Parents now see the full ParentPaperwork form after submitting their response to school

Until now after parents completed and submitted their form to school they were shown just a quick summary of the form. If they clicked their link again, this summary was again shown. After feedback from parents and schools we’ve changed this so the full form is displayed after submission, including both the school data fields and the fields the parents completed in order to submit the form.

This makes a lot of sense. Some parents want to be able to print out the form to keep for their records – or if it’s anything like our house, stick on the fridge door to remind us our kids have an excursion on a particular day.

We’ve also done a little bit of work on the print version of the page, so it looks cleaner and more closely aligned to the form you see on screen.

Data is now exported from ParentPaperwork as an email

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We’ve made a small change to the exporting of data from Slips in ParentPaperwork. The resulting files are now emailed to you, instead of us keeping you hanging around while the data is assembled and compiled into an Excel file.

Wherever possible we try to abstract a user from activities that require more than a moment to complete, and handle the tasks asynchronously, by which we mean don’t hold you up, instead we process the task behind the scenes and provide the results to you when they are ready.

Another example is Importing Data, you upload a list of students or parents to import, we send that off to a processor in our online platform that completes the task, then sends you an email notification when done. Meantime you are free to continue working on other activities within ParentPaperwork.

As of today, if you choose to export the data from either a single Slip, or a number of Slips, we will email you the resulting file instead of showing you a download link within the web site. Usually this is within a minute or so, but if the export system is very busy it means we avoid causing you problems – we know there’s nothing worse sitting staring at a spinning icon on a web page wondering if anything is actually happening.

 

 

Parent Contacts now included in ParentPaperwork Slip exports

We’ve released a small improvement today for the Slip exports, which now include the Parent Contacts for each Student.

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You’ve always been able to export the Parent responses for a permission slip by clicking the Export List button at the top of the Responses list. This creates an Excel file containing all the data about the Slip – the Student Name, Student List, the Response given by the Parents along with any other data fields the Parent completed when they submitted the Response.

As of today the Excel file will include the Parent Contacts for each student. We’ve been asked for this a number of times, and it makes complete sense that the export should include all the information you might need to take with you on an excursion or activity.

Plus, as a bonus, we’ve reworked the export to make it a lot faster, we noticed that sometimes it was taking a few more seconds that felt necessary to generate the Excel and found a way to speed up the file creation so the download link becomes available more quickly.

 

ParentPaperwork now has two factor authentication for parents submitting forms to school

 

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What is Two Factor Authentication?

Two factor authentication is often explained as ‘something you know and something you have’, the idea is that two different things are used to prove you are who you say you are. It’s a concept that will be familiar to many users of online banking, where even after you log in, in order to initiate a funds transfer or some other specific activity you are asked to enter a code sent to your mobile phone.

Parent authentication in ParentPaperwork

Every email sent to a parent from ParentPaperwork is unique. It contains a tracking code unique to that parent contact, student and permission slip. That’s how we are able to determine that a parent has opened a particular email, even if they have not yet submitted a response.

The links in the emails the parents click are also completely unique, which ensures we know who is making a response when the parent clicks through to fill out the form.

This is the default authentication mechanism for ParentPaperwork – because the parent clicked a link sent to their personal email address that is completely unique to them, the student and the slip, we consider this authentication that the person completing the form is the designated parent.

Introducing Two Factor Authentication in ParentPaperwork

For schools who wish to have a stronger level of authentication ParentPaperwork offers two factor authentication. This requires parents to create a password the first time they complete and submit a Slip.

In order to create a password the parent must enter a four digit code number sent to their mobile phone. The code is only valid for 30 minutes, meaning the parent must have their phone close to hand, if they are not already viewing the slip via their smart phone.

The next time they submit a slip, they will enter the password they created. If they forget their password, they can create a new one using the same method, with a new code sent to their phone.

Two factor authentication is an optional feature, please contact us to arrange it to be enabled for your account, or if you would like a demonstration.

Exporting data from Slips sent from ParentPaperwork in a date range

UPDATE: We now email the file instead of showing you a download link

Did you know you can export data from more than one Slip within ParentPaperwork? This is a handy feature for archiving, analysis and other reporting.

On the Slips list, click the Action dropdown and select Export Slips.

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A window will open for you to enter a date range. These are the dates between which the Slips were sent. For example, you can ask for data from all Slips sent between 17 May and 16 June. By default the dates will be for the past 30 days.

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Click the Export button, the export process will start, be patient for a minute while the data is assembled.

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When the file is ready you’ll be shown a link to click to download the file, it will be in Microsoft Excel format.

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ParentPaperwork – the Melbourne business helping teachers get back to teaching

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PRESS RELEASE

ParentPaperwork is a Melbourne business is helping schools save time and money so teachers can get back to teaching.

Each year around the world tens of millions of people sign hundreds of millions of paper forms on behalf of their children or relatives. It’s a labour intensive, unreliable and inefficient process.

ParentPaperwork is a new online platform to automate paper forms in education, dramatically reducing cost and improving liability management.  The system manages excursion forms, permission slips and many other forms parents need to complete for their children and send back to school.

Fiona Boyd and David Eedle founded ParentPaperwork after counting the dozens of forms they had signed for their three children over the course of a few months. They started consulting a number of schools in their local area last year and uncovered just how much teacher time and school resources are needed to manage the many paper forms sent out by schools each year.

ParentPaperwork has only been available for a few weeks, but Fiona Boyd, the company’s CEO says the response has been strong:

“The feedback from schools is overwhelmingly positive. We are now live in two schools and have another two dozen more who we have demoed to or are negotiating with. We’ve even had enquiries from New Zealand.”

“Principals and teachers know just how much work is needed to look after all their paper forms, every hour we save them is another hour teachers can spend in the classroom.”

Fiona and David have a long track record in online ventures, they founded the online jobs and news company Artshub.com.au in 2000, selling the business in 2006.  Schools can find out more at www.ParentPaperwork.com.

END

More information:

Fiona Boyd     0418 576409
David Eedle    0419 876 942

New feature: Managing your form template workflows

Workflows are a powerful tool in ParentPaperwork to ensure that the proper permissions are secured before a Slip is distributed to parents, or that certain tasks are completed – for example, for a Victorian state government school enter the information to the DEECD Student Activity Locator. Up until now users have had a limited ability to manage the workflows associated with form templates. Today we’ve introduced a new way to manage and edit the workflows.

Click on Forms to list your Form Templates.

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You’ll see a new edit option under the Workflow column, this will display the workflow associated with your template.

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Depending on the Step type, you can edit various information about the Step. For example, the first Step, to ‘Create’ the Slip cannot be removed, neither can the ‘Queue’ and ‘Send’ steps as these are required in order to trigger distribution of the Slips. For example, if you click to edit the ‘Create’ step, you’ll see that you cannot edit the Action, but you can allocate which Users can action the Step.

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You can insert new steps by clicking the relevant Add New Step button. Typically this is to introduce an Approval step, whereby you want the workflow to move to a particular person (or selection of people) who can approve the sending of a Slip.

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You should add two new Steps, firstly the ‘Send for Approval’ step. When this is actioned by the User, it will trigger an email to the ‘approver’ so they are notified that they need to log in and action the Slip. Secondly an ‘Approve’ step, which the approving user(s) will action to show that they have signed off on the Slip. They would then usually action the Queue Slip step. Thus the workflow might look like this:

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If you change your mind, you can delete the Steps you have added. Y

 

 

 

New feature: Email from name and address

We’ve released a small update today in response to feedback from schools, the ability to configure the ‘From’ email address for the emails sent by ParentPaperwork to schools.

In the past the emails sent to parents always had the ‘From’ and ‘Reply To’ emails as ‘noreply@parentpaperwork.com’, and the ‘From Name’ as ‘ParentPaperwork’.

We’ve made two changes:

  1. The From Name will now be the name of the school, instead of ParentPaperwork. We think this makes much more sense, parents can now easily recognise the email is coming from the school.
  2. Users can now control the From/Reply To email address. By default it remains as ‘noreply@parentpaperwork.com’, but you can now configure it to be something else. This is important if an email ‘bounces’ because the recipient’s email is incorrect, the bounce message will be sent to the From email address, thus a school can now choose to receive those bounces and know that a parent’s email address has problems.

Here’s what the email might look like:

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Notice the From Name is the name of the school, and the email address is no longer ‘noreply@parentpaperwork.com’.

How to change the From Email address

As part of these changes we’ve also slightly reorganised the Settings menus. If you click the cog at the top right you’ll find an option called Settings.

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Click this, and it will open a new page that consolidates together your options.

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Click the Configuration option.

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By default the From Email Address will be ‘noreply@parentpaperwork.com’. To set your own, uncheck the Use Default option and type the new address in the field. You could set up a special email address at school just for this, for example, slips@schoolname.com.

To reset back, check the Use Default box.

 

 

 

 

New feature: Limit the number of responses from parents

We’re pleased to announce a new feature for ParentPaperwork, the ability to limit the number of responses submitted by parents. This has been an idea suggested by several schools, and made complete sense when it was explained to us.

Some schools are using ParentPaperwork to capture RSVPs for events and functions, for example, a Father Son Breakfast, and usually these types of events have a limit on numbers.

When you add or edit a slip you will now see a new set of options called ‘Limit Responses’. By default it is set to ‘All’, meaning all parents can respond to your Slip. If you change this option to ‘First’ a new field will appear where you can enter the number of responses you wish to capture. For example, if you only want the first 30 responses you would enter ’30’ into the field.

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When the 31st parent clicks the link in their email to respond to the Slip they will be shown a message explaining that the number of permitted responses has been exceeded.

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