Book your ParentPaperwork demo at SchoolsTechOz (free Expo)

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ParentPaperwork will be exhibiting at the SchoolsTechOz Conference at Firbank Grammar in Melbourne 12-14 September.  The conference is for all staff in the K–12 school education sector, and 750 delegates are expected. There are 240 breakout sessions, and a bunch of high profile speakers. It’s going to be an exciting few days.

Please come and meet the ParentPaperwork team on our stand, we can show you how ParentPaperwork can save your school time and money by replacing your paper-based forms.

The Expo is free, you do NOT need to have a paid registration for the conference. Head to this link and book your free ticket.

If you are attending the conference, or just coming in for the Expo, we’d be happy to book a specific time to demonstrate ParentPaperwork. Please email support@parentpaperwork.com and we’ll schedule an appointment.

 

ParentPaperwork wins at StartUp Victoria Pitch Night

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ParentPaperwork was one of five companies presenting at the StartUp Victoria Pitch Night in Melbourne yesterday in front of five judges and around 300 audience members. And we won!

For the past four weeks Fiona and David, the founders of ParentPaperwork, have participated in pitch training workshops organised by StartUp Victoria, led by two fantastic mentors Nic Hodges and Nick Rakis. They’ve been wonderful in guiding all of the five companies through a process of refining and distilling our presentations, to ensure we maximised our 6 minutes on stage. We’re very grateful to them for their advice.

The other four companies were:

Everyone had amazing pitches prepared by the time we turned up at Inpsire9 in Richmond last night, and with five such diverse businesses it’s a tough call on the judges to try to compare what some could call apples and oranges. Here we all are on stage (that’s David and Fiona on the left).

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But in the end ParentPaperwork was announced as the winner, which we are over the moon about.

Winning this is a lovely affirmation of our business idea and plans. The 5 judges were 75% of the vote, the other 25% came from the audience. A number of people were tweeting during the pitches, and some tweeted some pretty positive comments about us, so we can expect something of a network effect to continue on for a little while as people pick up on that activity online.

Our prizes include:

We already were excited by the future for ParentPaperwork, last night was a terrific affirmation for us that we are on the right track.

 

 

 

Updated email templates in ParentPaperwork

Months ago when we first conceived of ParentPaperwork and built the initial version of the system we created a set of email templates that somewhat put the emphasis on ‘Permission Slips’. That’s because this was the first real demand we had from the first group of schools we consulted with.

Of course over the last few months schools have found many more uses for ParentPaperwork, and the term ‘permission slip’ is now not very accurate.

We’ve now updated three key emails, both to clean them up visually and to replace the phrase ‘permission slip’ with the more appropriate ‘online form’. We have also strengthened the text at the bottom to make it clear to parents that the email is coming from the school.

New Slip Email

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Thanks for Response Email

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Over Due Slip Email

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New Feature: Send reminders for Slips to Parents; Clone and Delete options moved

Today we have released a great new feature for ParentPaperwork, the ability to trigger additional reminders to parents for Slips they have not yet responded to. Up until now there has only been one automated reminder sent to parents, based on the Due Date for the Slip. If a parent does not respond by the Due Date they are sent an email reminder.

Whilst we are seeing fantastic response rates from parents (in general our analysis shows greater than 50% of parents respond within 24 hours, and many even sooner than that) we all know that some people can require a little ‘hurry up’.

The new feature allows you to schedule a reminder to be sent the next morning for any of your Slips.

After you log in to ParentPaperwork, click through to view your Slip. You will find a new Action drop down menu at the top. There are three options:

  1. Send Reminder
  2. Clone Slip
  3. Delete Slip

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The Clone and Delete functions used to be buttons at the bottom of the page, but we decided to move them to this new menu for a couple of reasons: firstly they are not used regularly; secondly the row of buttons at the bottom was quite busy, so we left the buttons we see you using regularly, like Preview, and moved these two.

Clicking the Send Reminder button opens a popup window:

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If you click the blue Send Reminder button, we will add a new reminder to be emailed to Parents the next morning (the reminders are sent around 7am).

You can only schedule a new reminder for each Slip each day – eg you cannot send more than one reminder for a Slip in a day.

 

 

 

The Timetabler can now export student data to ParentPaperwork

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We’re very pleased to announce that the latest version of The Timetabler now can export data to ParentPaperwork. The Timetabler is the most powerful and flexible school timetabling software package around, and is widely used in schools throughout Australia, and many other countries. Their fantastic team has been wonderful in setting all this up.

Please follow these steps to create a CSV format file of student information that you can then import to ParentPaperwork.

Start on the Timetable Development Module Home Page

Click on File > Export Data > Admin System

On the drop down menu of file types, select ‘parentpaperwork.com’

Select an Export Folder location on your computer and click Export

The export file will be created

You should now see your export file in the folder you selected, and you are ready to select the file for import into ParentPaperwork

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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