2nd June 2021 All Posts

Connect Childcare chats to Bright Sparks Nursery

Connect Childcare chats to Alice Haigh

Connect Childcare chats to Bright Sparks Nursery

With over 3,500 nurseries in our portfolio, we’ve decided to shine the spotlight on a different one each month, to get to know them a little better!

So, as part of our new, regular Q&A series, it’s over to Alice Haigh, head of early years at Bright Sparks Nursery, to tell us more about their workplace, job role and their experience using nursery management software.

  1. How long have you worked in the nursery sector?
    I’ve been in the industry since 1998 – over 23 years now. I graduated from university as a primary school teacher, and I then did this for eight years – teaching Key Stage 1 and 2, and reception.
  2. Sum up your typical working day in three words:
    Rewarding, challenging, happy.
  3. Why did you choose Connect Childcare?
    We got a recommendation from a fellow nursery – a chain – and they explained how time-saving and efficiency-driving the technology was for them. We use both the Connect Childcare and iConnect solutions together, enabling us to have a truly integrated approach to our operations – from invoicing and reporting through to child observations.
  4. Describe our nursery management software platform in one word?
  5. And your favourite feature?
    From an admin point of view it’s the invoicing element – it streamlines the payment gathering process – and from a management perspective, it’s the strategic overview. The technology enables us to plan effectively – we can look at budgets, occupancy numbers, and staff ratios and make informed decisions based on the data, to help the growth of the setting.

    As a result, we’ve also noticed a massive change in our time management using Connect – we now have more hours to dedicate to child development and business planning.
  6. What’s your biggest challenge as head of early years?
    The unknown. There’s always a situation you’ve never come across before and you have to be adaptable and resilient to face it head on and resolve it to the best of your ability.
  7. But what do you love most about your job?
    The fact that we have such an impact on children’s lives – not just when they’re in the EY setting, but well into the future too.
  8. Complete the sentence: ‘Connect’s technology has enabled us to’…
    … efficiently manage our finances – helping us to dramatically reduce aged debt and improve our cashflow. For us, it’s like having crystal ball because you can see foresee any payment issues and act upon them proactively instead of reactively.
  9. When you’re not at work, how do you relax?
    I love to read – especially crime and thriller genres – I also listen to music, and I always have a jigsaw on the go.
  10. Finally, what advice would you give to nurseries considering investing in management software?
    First and foremost, look at what you need and then do your research based upon this. Investigate the various software platforms out there and pick the one which meets your setting’s requirements. Finally, remember that any solution will only be as great as the information you put in – you need to work together with the technology to get the results you want.

Feature on our blog!

If you’re a Connect Childcare client and you’d like to take part in our Q&A, complete the form by clicking the button or drop a quick note to our PR manager – via amy@scribapr.com – and she and the team will take it from there.

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About the Author

Marketing Lead at Connect Childcare