Yes and I could go on responding to your comments too!
Maybe we should call it Duece! :D
Whatever MIS you are using then you need to know how to access all areas. There were obviously parts of SIMS that you did not use at the time. Profiles and Performance Analysis spring immediately to mind.
As you say tho' - can't spend any more time on this thread - so that is my final word too.
Handling very well I believe, as a very happy Serco user, allbeit after having to poke Serco to get a long standing issue resolved (that's common with many areas of IT Support though!), we do everything in it, all my eggs are in one basket.
It is far more powerful than SIMS but does need a team of people who are dedicated and know what they are doing its not just Word and Access with a pritty front end on it. You need time, dedication, commitment and a very good forward thinking staff for it. We have those and are going leaps and bounds ahead, some will be implemented now some will be next academic year but fingers crossed it will all be good.
Someone said about having to get Serco to do the assessments and stuff, you could pay them, or do the training and do it yourself as we do, we haven't used Serco consultancy in quite some time now, we talk to support and they assist us with niggles in reports we write etc but it works very well for us, but as I said you do need people that know what they are doing and have the time to work with it as its not a simple mail-merge style program. An SQL expert would be advantageous to working with it I would say.
bye bye serco
2 years away from sims and things seem to be looking good now, after talking to a capita trainer today about the upgrades breaking sims every monthly update "he said it does not do that anymore" i will post back when we run our first upgrade.
if you move to serco hope you are ok with editing xml files in notepad.(you will find out if you move)
check the fine print about the data transfer from sims what guarantee do you get that all your data will be transferred ask the question.
make sure your sims data is complete legal names,phone numbers in the right place (amazing what some people put in) as your office manager will age very quickly.......... whats the saying Garbage in Garbage out.
Another point i would ask about is how will it work with your vle
Ask about the Census data as we have quite a few problems with it
Eportal Is pretty good, sometimes flakey on IE but in general pretty good teachers can get access to the information quickly.
Facility is not the most user friendly piece of software i hated it
an expert in sql would be handy.....
our office manager was always on the phone as she could not get it to do what she wanted even 2 years down the line.
Serco did not work for us but some schools are really happy with it.