What is the true value of an open spot within an early childhood education and care service? While a straightforward question, the answer is anything but. There are so many factors to consider when you start to dig into the concepts of service economics, revenue optimisation, and increased profitability.
Enrolment, revenue per child, and efficient staffing practices all contribute to the success of a service. Included within all of these is the nuance of occupancy management. Services typically aim for 70-90% occupancy and that could vary greatly, which is difficult to staff for. If you consider the original question within this context, you may be asking yourself what the revenue value is from those 10-30% open spots. Better yet, how can you improve your operation to minimise shifts in occupancy or increase your casual bookings to fill some of those spots?
Today’s approach to managing casual bookings can be a huge time drain on you or your staff and may lead you to avoid it. For Educators and Directors, dealing with the daily responsibilities while having to drop everything, pick up the phone, check the room schedules for availability and ensure you have the proper staff on hand to handle any last-minute incoming children increases stress and adds to burn-out. Kangarootime’s new casual booking functionality eliminates the need to constantly monitor centre attendance when it comes to last minute bookings. Now you can configure the setup so that open spots become visible in the KT Connect (Parent) App automatically or based on your service’s dynamics for that day. No more emails, phone calls, or schedule checks. Stop avoiding the drop-in opportunity and embrace it! You will be able to fill more spots and increase revenue. With your costs already in place, your margin improves significantly.
From the perspective of a parent, having to react to last-minute changes in the schedule will only become more common and somewhat of an expectation as many parents navigate their work life/balance that has been thrown up in the air due to a certain worldwide pandemic. ECEC services ability to streamline the communication and securing of available spots to accommodate last-minute changes will certainly be a game changer for parents, and positively impact the retention of staff and families.
Now you can start to view your open spots as significant opportunities to help offer flexibility to your families, increase predictability for your staff, and grow your business.
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