Best CRM for Childcare

Contributor, Benzinga

Operating a childcare business requires regular communications with customers and prospects. To do that, you need effective contact organization and communication automation tools.

From sending marketing emails to parents who have expressed interest in your business to updating parents via newsletters about field trips and parent-teacher days, having a CRM for childcare industry will aid you in all areas of your operations. 

Learn how you can find and nurture leads faster, communicate with parents, market your center and grow your business with a childcare CRM.

Factors Affecting Choice of CRM for Childcare

The most robust childcare CRMs are a fully integrated suite of software services designed specifically for your industry. You can use all-in-one childcare software to power your accounting, payment processing, communication, classroom planning and more. 

To make sure your software offers more than just a CRM, here are some of the most important things to look for in the software.

Features: CRM systems for childcare centers need to be packed with helpful features that do more than just organize contacts. Look for a system that includes billing and payment processing, parent communication, digital check-in and check-out, meal tracking, door security and more. 

Affordability: Over the last several years, the software industry for childcare has exploded with many options. But like any software, price does not indicate quality. Good childcare CRM software balances the features you need with a fair pricing structure. Be sure you don’t choose software with limited features that cost too much based on your operation’s needs.

Cross-platform: Parents are busy. To reach them with your CRM messages, you need to consider cross-platform reach. Many childcare software programs feature cloud-based web apps, mobile apps, integration with wearables and more. The more communication channels you have with parents, the better to make sure you never miss an opportunity.

Customization: Childcare businesses are extremely unique. Because of that, there’s no one-size-fits-all software on the market that serves all childcare centers. Customization within the software is essential, whether that be in how you bill or how you reach out to parents. Avoid rigid CRM programs that don’t give you the customization you need to run your business.

Analytics: With analytics, you can learn how effective your interactions with customers and prospects are. Gain a better understanding of the right times to reach out to prospects after they’ve expressed interest, how many times to follow up and what content works best in reaching them. Analytics provide valuable insights to help you adjust and grow your operations.

Customer support: Your focus is on caring for children and interacting with parents. Not being able to do what you need to do in your CRM should not hold you back. With good customer support, you can focus on your business while your software company helps you with your technology.

What is the Best CRM for Childcare?

We’ve put together a list of the top options to answer your questions about what are the CRM software for childcare. Get information on the best system to meet your needs based on the type of childcare you operate.

1. Best for Multiple Locations: Procare

Procare offers tools and resources for large enterprise childcare operations. Parents can self-register through the convenient parent portal so that your CRM is up to date. Set reminders for when parents need to update their contact information so that staying in touch with parents is simple. Manage multiple locations and enroll children in various programs with ease.

Pricing: Procare pricing is based on the number of children you care for. Centers with up to 60 students can purchase the software for $49 per month. 

2. Best for Mobile Friendly Centers: HiMama

The HiMama mobile and tablet application is one of the best on the market. If your childcare center uses these devices in the classroom, you’ll appreciate the ease with which you can take notes and communicate with parents from the app. But you’ll also find in-depth reporting features, helpful parent-teacher communication tools and smart billing options. 

Pricing: You have to request a quote to get pricing information from HiMama, but it appears to be based on how many children you care for.

3. Best for Customer Support: EZCare

EZCare has a very user-friendly interface and outstanding customer support for childcare centers that have limited technology resources. And, the software offers parents many self-service features, like a payment portal to manage payment methods and schedules. Parents can enroll their children using the online registration, which keeps your CRM updated with important information.

Pricing: Prices start at $59 per month for the introductory plan that includes scheduling, billing and the parent portal. To get all features, you’ll need to pay $149 per month. 

4. Best Free Option: Brightwheel

Brightwheel offers helpful features to automate your childcare business practices so you can do less manual work. Parents and staff will enjoy the digital check-in process. Administrators can use the childcare CRM to learn more about their attendance records and areas of opportunity to enroll more children to maximize their capacity. Communicating through the mobile app is simple and parents will appreciate the regular messages and updates about their child.

Pricing: Childcare centers with less than 20 students that only need one user login account can use Brightwheel for free. Larger centers must request a quote.

5. Best for Automation: Kangarootime

A CRM should save you time through automation. Kangarootime has in-depth automations that you can set to free up more time for you to focus on caring for children. Free up time to focus on prospecting and networking with local parents to grow your business. Kangarootime has a helpful parent app to make check-in and check-out simple each day. And parents will appreciate the option to receive SMS text messages or messages through the parent app. 

Pricing: You have to reach out to sales to get a custom price quote based on your childcare operations.

6. Best for After School Centers: CloudBB

CloudBB offers unique solutions for afterschool programs. Manage secure pickup from the child’s school and provide parents transparency about when you make the pickup. The digital sign-in and sign-out process is also very straightforward for parents. And once they sign out, they’ll get an email recap of their child’s day with notes from the teacher to facilitate open communication. The built-in marketing tools help you take full advantage of the CRM so you can automate prospecting emails to ensure more parents choose your childcare.

Pricing: For childcare centers with 200 or fewer active students, CloudBB is $800 per year. Additional students over the 200 limit are an additional $5 per year. You can also add live online course instruction to your package for $2 per month per student.

Automate and Expedite your Childcare Operations

From the moment parents express interest in your childcare, you need to show them that you’ll be responsive and transparent in your communication. A CRM childcare helps you manage your prospecting and customer communication to fuel your business.

Schedule a few free demos with the top CRM options listed above to get started with automating and expediting your childcare operations.