Migrating from old Sematime to SematimePlus: 10 things you should know
All over the past two weeks, we have been upgrading schools using the old Sematime to SematimePlus – our new parental engagement software for schools. We have really tried to make the migration as simple and painless as possible. All you’ve got to do is login to your old Sematime account after which your data will be migrated automatically then redirected to the new portal.
Whereas most of the things you already love about Sematime have remained the same or become better, it’s still possible to lose your way around the new software. In this article, I will look at some of the issues that will need some extra attention.
- Student contacts should have admission numbers
While in the old Sematime we were a little lax with this requirement, SematimePlus requires that all your contacts have admission numbers or registration numbers or any other unique identifier assigned to students. This will help us associate every student with a parent especially when parents dial *384*100# or use our mobile application.
- Double-click to edit contacts
It’s now event easier to edit contacts in SematimePlus. Identify the contact that you wish to edit then double click on the name. You will be presented with an inline editing bar
- Contacts categorization into folders
You can now categorize your contacts into these folders: students, teachers, non-teaching staff and others. Each folder can have as many groups of contacts as you wish. To prevent abuse of the unlimited bulk SMS for schools under the premium plan, we have added a contacts limitation feature to all the folders. For students, you can only add a maximum of the school population. We’ll also give you 50 more students as a bonus to cater for population changes. For teachers and non-teaching folders, you can only add a maximum of 100 contacts while the others folder can have at most one third of the school students population.
- Sms balance
Schools that are yet to upgrade to the premium plan, need to buy SMS units regularly. To view your SMS balance, click on the ‘Sms’ menu. Your account balance will appear on the top right corner. Sms costs are only Ksh 1.00 per SMS across all networks in Kenya. Upgrade your account to the premium plan to get unlimited bulk SMS – meaning you only pay once per year and send as many messages as you can.
- Adding exam results
While in the old Sematime the focus was to just send exams results to parents, SematimePlus emphasizes on adding exam results to your account so that parents can get them when they dial *384*100# or use our mobile app. Sending of exam results via SMS is optional. In SematimePlus, we are also giving you the option of adding more details about the exam such as class size, class average and best score. This is to help parents easily compare their son’s or daughter’s performance with other students.
- Updating fee balances
Parents of schools using SematimePlus, can use our self-service platforms to query for their outstanding fee balances. We encourage schools to regularly update student fee balances so that parents can always get accurate figures at all times. We always let parents know the last time their fees balance was updated. It’s optional to send fee balance notifications to parents via SMS.
- Moms’ and dads’ phone numbers
On SematimePlus, we have introduced support for secondary numbers. You will no longer be required to save both dads’ and moms’ contacts in separate groups. While importing contacts from an Excel file, ensure that you have two separate columns: one for the primary number and the other for secondary numbers. The system will add them both then associate each with the student they belong to.Note that secondary numbers are only enabled for schools that have upgraded to the premium plan. This functionality is disabled by default. Go to your account settings to enable it.
- Changing account settings
You can change your account settings by clicking the ‘My Account’ icon on your top right corner then selecting ‘Settungs’. Among other things you can change are, message signature, enable secondary numbers, add how to pay fee balance instructions etc.
- Editing the message signature
The message signature is that little message we append to your messages. For example, ‘Sent by St. Anthony School. Call 0706129100‘ To change your signature, go to your account settings on your top right corner.
- Changing your password
Whereas we provide a way for schools to specify user privileges for the secretary, bursar and dean of studies; some schools choose to share their password with multiple account users. This is a security risk. But if you must, we recommend that you regularly update your password to keep your data secure. To do so, go to your account settings on your top right corner.
While I have done the best to explain how to address the many issues our customers call to enquire about, this list is not exhaustive. If you should need a clarification, contact our support team on 0706129100 or email info[at]sematime.com.