Oops_my_bad (2nd February 2009)
It doesn't matter which one you pick.... all of them will send you round the twist anyway.
Oops_my_bad (2nd February 2009)
Any schools in Scotland using Bromcom?
If so does it have modules to tie in with SQA requirements?
And how are you finding it, of course?
I've worked in a school with SIMS pre-.net, the old .4/5 modules, no 6. That was a nightmare upgrade. We had the bromcom grey folders which were good which ran over the bromcom-only wireless (GPRS i believe), which they are no longer selling, not sure about support.
We ended up going only to SIMS mainly because the Bromcom server was old and needed replacing and Bromcom could not deliver what we wanted. We did do a number of pilots but we never got everything we wanted, they were never giving a written date of anything we wanted, like PLASC, unlike (Capita) SIMS who would say, this would cost £x , it will take y days.
Don't get me wrong, Bromcom support is excellent, I liked the fact IT Techy's could get on, any problems with Bromcom you just got the person to phone Bromcom and they sorted it, the problem we had was we need it to link into SIMS for the bits it didn't do. I believe it's a lot better system, we did have the client application, but upgrades were manual, which was good, but also bad, deployment was a nightmare, but I think, they were backwards compatible from what I can remember, so it didn't matter if staff was on an out-of-date version, not sure if Bromcom would recommend it tho. I beleive the current Bromcom system is completely web-based.
At the end of the day, just decide what MIS system looks easy enough to use and does EVERYTHING you want to do, if it doesn't ask yourself is there away around, are you going to export to access and create a custom report or such? Are you able to accept this? What happens if your off\leave? SIMS is the safest bet, it does pretty much everything and support is everywhere.
Getting people who are SIMS trained is pretty easy.
The gold rule I would recommend would be to choice something and stick to it. Don't keep changing MIS packages, your lose the staff faith, waste money and get your data more and more corrupt. Whatever you decide, you're stuck with it for 5 years+. No MIS is perfect.
PS: Anyone who moans at SIMS and upgrades should think about "AutoSOLUS" script.
There are some apps that run on the server; tools and access to the SQL, but the front end has been web based for ages.
I've posted previously, in this thread actually with a link to some other posts, check post #29.
Really need someone from Bromcom to comment, i'll ask John Condon or someone else to give you some info.
Although not completely web-based you also have ePortal from Serco and e1 from Pearson Pheonix.
RM Integris G2 is web based as well, never used it though.
Just a quick reply (as due to snow we are all working on huge workload backlog :P).
Yes the core system is completely Web based. The only components that are not are specific Admin applications for some of the ancillary products (eBehaviour for example).
Registration can be taken via browser, standalone app (winFolder), PDA, Mobile phone, Mac etc.
I won't clog the list with sales patter (especially cos I am a techie) but info is at Bromcom Computers Plc | Management Information Systems for Schools & Colleges
Alternatively you can PM me on here as well for any more questions.
Have tried to look at all the comments on Facility and SIMS but may have missed a few so i apologise if i go over whats been said.
I have used SIMS and Facility although i must admit to not using SIMS.net much.
I found with SIMS that it was a great product and did exactly what it said on the tin, yes there were updates and upgrades but you have that with everything. The problem was that it wasn't very cusomisable... It did what it did and you had to stick with that
With Facility there is alot more to setup and "TWEAK" before you have it doing what you want. You dont have to have a knowledge of SQL queries for the reports just a general idea of how databases work. Serco Helpdesk are very good at getting your reports working if you get the basics of it setup in the first place.
It took us about 1 year to get it how we wanted but now its fine and only little tweaks here and there add to the many features and all here agree it was worth the initial problems, although the upgrade to version 8 was a nightmare it was quickly sorted.
Last edited by coquet636; 3rd February 2009 at 04:24 PM.
There's a software review in Funding for Independent Schools - Feb 2009 which list some of the players. We're looking at Hebron Engage at the moment - looks excellent and flexible but SIMS is okay too - we use that as well. Hebron much more interested in pleasing the customer, however.
Nothing specifically wrong that I'd want to discuss on a forum Phil. It's just a relative thing. As I said SIMS is basically fine but, obviously with 22000 Capita customers any individual client will get less attention than in a smaller organisation.
Designed for independents so does some things really well that you can't get from the mainstream products. Tech backup great and very willing to help. Updates take all of 10 mins to install, no tech input, and most of that time is spent drinking coffee. We really like it and it's dead easy for teachers to use (some didn't bother turning up for training because they'd sorted it out for themselves).
Definitley worth a look I would say:
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