After evaluating the software and putting out an RFP, it is time for Susan to take the next step in the process. The fictitious school nutrition director needs to decide which school nutrition software is the best fit for her district. Once Susan makes this decision she must bring it to the school board for approval. This serves as a type of check and balance to ensure that Susan is making a smart financial decision. Susan is so excited about all the wonderful benefits her program will reap from the new software she cannot wait to share with the school board members. She will tell the board all about the lower costs and increased efficiency as well as the many other positive results.
Susan understands that running a school nutrition program can be expensive—which is why she feels delighted each time she can break down the costs. Explaining the cost benefits to the board can be difficult, so Susan begins by discussing how this new software will help her better manage the inventory at each site. Her software helps her plan meals and because it integrates with inventory, she is sure to order the right amount of food. This integration helps Susan understand what products she needs and when. The inventory module of her software also allows her to reconcile her accounts whenever she wishes. Susan and the district no longer have to worry about paying for food they did not receive. This makes inventory a hassle-free and cost-efficient process for the school nutrition program.
Part of being a manager is paying your employees. Susan and her district are no longer shocked by this expense, however, they love getting the most value for their money. The new software allows Susan’s employees to make better use of their time because they are no longer required to perform manual processes. This opens the door for much more productive work time which, in turn, saves the district money.
Next, Susan points out that her new school nutrition software will increase revenues for her program as well as the district. Susan can see the confused look on the board member’s faces as she begins explaining how this will occur. She points out that the student eligibility module determines each student’s eligibility level in a timely manner. The new program determines eligibility almost immediately. If a student with free eligibility enrolls in school today the district can claim all of her meals from the beginning. In the past many new students’ meals went unclaimed for 3 or 5 days until their eligibility was processed, losing money for the district.
Susan believes that if you serve 100 meals in a day you should be able to claim all 100. Being able to only claim 90 meals loses revenue for the district, but she knows this new system will make this less likely. Also through this system Susan’s district will probably experience higher numbers of students meeting eligibility through direct certification. Because of this, the district can cut down on the time and expenses that cause Susan a headache during student eligibility time.
Increasing accountability with compliance
Susan and her school board both want their school nutrition program to receive great reviews from the state. So she highlights the increased accountability that comes with the new school nutrition software. The software helps you follow regulations so your district gets a glowing administrative review. In Susan’s new software there are tools to ensure she is serving legitimate reimbursable meals. This includes checking the foods, menus, and serving sizes of each meal. Besides meal evaluation, the new system also allows Susan to maintain appropriate documentation. This means Susan will always be able to find any information the school board or state may request.
Improved efficiency of staff
In the past, Susan’s district has struggled with the productivity of their staff but this is no longer the case. With the new, easy to use software the staff can learn the system with little trouble. This ease of use and understanding of the software will improve staff efficiency district wide. To increase efficiency even further, the new software is available everywhere because it is web based. Susan’s school nutrition staff can now access it from any device at any location. When traveling or visiting other schools the staff member can log in and work from their device. Susan believes because of this feature she will never see those low productivity days again!
Better communication with parents
The last benefit Susan highlights to the school board is the new software’s communication features. Contacting parents is a breeze with the automated phone call and e-mail systems. Susan can set the system to alert parents when their students have a low balance on their account. This reduces the number of parents calling to check on the status of their account. The communication system creates better customer service between the school district and the parents.
As Susan finishes sharing her excitement with the board she will reiterate the importance of a reliable school nutrition software. She is confident that this new software will lower costs, increase revenues and accountability, create efficiency, and improve communication. All these things are crucial to the success of her school nutrition department as well as the entire school district.
Now that Susan has sold her board on the purchase you see just how easy it can be! Just tell them everything you love about the software and they are sure to buy in. Have you sold school nutrition software to your board? Share with us what you did to win them over.