Child care centres will experience some of the fastest employment growth through towards 2020, according to research in both US and Australia sectors. But with more staff — and more children to look after — centre managers need to invest in new tech to optimize their day-to-day operations. Here are three of the biggest child care centre management trends for 2017 that you need to know about.

 

1. Streamlined Payment Solutions

 

The average cost of centre-based child care ranges between $70 and $200 in Australia. With the cost of child care at a premium, more child care centre managers are investing in solutions that streamline payment collection. Long gone are the days when parents and guardians had to pay for child care in person, usually in cash. Now, they often pay for child care online with a credit or debit card. Customers can pay for the full year upfront or make recurring payments on a monthly or quarterly basis.

 

 

 

 

2. Better Accounting

 

Child care centre managers require an accounting solution that calculates estimated taxes and projects income and expenses. Many child care centres once relied on pen and paper to keep track of their finances, but now various digital tools optimize account management. In 2017, expect more child care centre managers to control account management processes via their smartphones. These digital payment platforms let managers send payments to staff and receive payments from parents and guardians. Many apps integrate with child care centre management software, too.

 

3. Social Media Marketing

 

More child care centre managers will communicate with parents and guardians via social media this year. Websites such as Facebook and Twitter also provide managers with ways to promote their centres to people in the local area and attract new customers. Research shows that mums with children under 5 are the most active social media users. Social media can also be useful to notify people about centre closures, fee increases and special events.

These three trends will change how child care centre managers handle their accounts, send and receive payments, and promote their businesses. You can expect these technologies to dominate child care centre management this year.