Ms Michelle Lekay's journey with Rise School Management

Ms Michelle Lekay, an esteemed Bursar, gives an interview about her experience with Rise School Management and cover some useful features which helped her a lot in her job.
- Hello everyone. Today we're talking to Ms Michelle Lekay, an esteemed Bursar, who has been using Rise since 2019 and is eager to share how Rise has been assisting her, saving a lot of time and empowering her school. Hello, Michelle, thank you for being with us today.

Hello and thank you for the opportunity.

- Michelle, how did your journey start with Rise?

Our journey started with Rise in 2019. These were exciting two months. We had various role players and everybody had various questions because we were trying to formulate and confirm whether Rise would be able to meet all our needs. We're still on that journey because, I mean, if we live in an ever-changing country, needs are always changing and then we have the development to align us as such.

- When the system went live, what exactly was implemented?

We went live on the 1st of January. When we returned to school, we were then able to, with all the live information on the system, we were able to do our annual batch invoicing that means invoicing from pre-private grade or fees that means fees from school fees ranging from grade one to seven, as well as all of the key school fees. That was done in a very simplified manner because it wasn't the necessity opposed to the old system where we had to do class book class or grade per grade, we could actually do bulk and batch invoicing, so it really simplified the process.

- Sounds great. Was the onboarding process complicated?

With our first year, we were guided and were assisted by Rise to help us import our budget, and from there I was able to import it by myself every year consecutively, you know, after the guidance. So yes, in onboarding, there are always teething issues, but it went. In my opinion, we had quite an experience and at the end of the day everything is simply easier.

- I’m really glad to hear that. What do you like about Rise most of all?

In terms of the system itself, it is very user-friendly. If you are able to read, we will definitely understand where to go. You cannot break the system, and there's nothing that you can't undo or get help before.

- How long have you been using Rise School Management? Any advice you can give to new users to pay attention to?

This is our third year on the Rise system, and I know for many bursars it would be the first time they see the electronic 043 that really simplified my life as a bursar. Obviously, the system is based on accuracy because we all are people, you know, whatever garbage you put in you're going to get out, so accuracy and attention to details when capturing from the live Bank stream is very important because that form gives you a whole lot of reports.

- Ok, great. Let’s move on to the functionality. What can you say about reporting and analytics? Do you find the system tools convenient?

There is such a lot of information available at hand. I even use this Home page, and then we have our meetings and I need to present, you know, where we are at for expenses, income, unpaid school fees, I can use this Business pulse as an accurate measure of presenting the figures. And it's so nice to be able to go to the meeting without having to take a lot of documentation, and you can simply use the pie sheet or you can use graphs just to illustrate to the committee members where you are financially.

- Ok, thank you. What about the electronic O43 form, how do you find it compared to what you had in the past?

This for me as a bursar was a very-very complicated method in the past that has now been simplified. I know for all bursars this is a very intense report that took a lot of time, and it's really been simplified, and we are always grateful for this.

- Were there any issues with setting up O43?

There were some in year one, but we had an accountant official at Rise that would sit with us and link our 043 entries correctly because there was a linkage issue, and we were able to balance it out. So we were very happy about that.

- We’re always glad to assist. Can you also say a few words about school fee statements?

School fee statements provide a great initiative and a simplified manner of sending out batch statements to the school. It has really saved us so much time in doing this. Obviously, you all should have a very stable internet connection and from there all should be well.

- Ok, and what about life Bank stream? Any benefits you can mention?

Live Bank stream is such an important screen because this is where each and every transaction that takes place gets imported into the system for us. If I need more detailed information on a particular transaction, I can simply double-click into the payment receipt, and it will give me the exact details. It is very convenient when we get the strict financial evaluations, and the SFRO, the School Finance and Record Officer wants to know what the amounts are made of, and when you're sitting with your laptop, and you don't have paperwork, it's really-really streamlined. You can click in there and you can present all those payment receipts with all the information required to the SFRO.

- Ok, the last question. Can you summarize how exactly the system simplified your job?

The system has really helped in many-many aspects. I will reiterate: saving time, saving money, and also when there is something that you don't understand and you need help with, that's simply an email. The team will try their best to get to it as soon as possible.

- Thank you, Michelle, for such appreciation for the Rise system and our work. We wish you all the best.
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