If you find yourself in a busy music department, it might be time to consider music school management software to help manage your department more efficiently.

But what does this actually mean? Where is the best place to start?

Whether you are using our music management software Maestro or another platform, the ideal solution should be able to help you save time on the admin tasks carried out by staff on a daily or weekly basis; enabling Directors of Music, administrators and visiting music teachers more time to focus on building a thriving department.

Finding the best music management solution to match your specific requirements and budget can be a challenge, but a good way to make this process easier is to create a checklist before starting your search.

Here are some ideas of what you may want to consider when choosing a music school software for your department:

Does the software include music department specific features (in other words features aimed specifically at music departments & schools)?

Scheduling features are a great example of something to look out for. Between rehearsals, standard lessons and lessons with visiting music teachers, scheduling a busy music department can be a big logistical challenge. Ideally a music MIS should give you the ability to:

  • Move backwards and forwards in scheduling rotation, as well as fix students in a schedule
  • Add breaks to a schedule
  • Detect clashes and add protection rules
  • Distribute schedules individually to students, parents and teachers

Does the software make it possible to automate certain processes and reports (such as invoicing and calculating employee hours)?

At its core, a software solution should make your life easier. Finding a platform that’s intuitive and runs key reports and processes with little data input is key. With Maestro, for example, you can:

  • Produce and manage communications for schedules, billing and important information
  • Contact parents, students and staff from within the system
  • Produce emails with merged content for distribution

Can the software grow with the music department?

As schools get bigger and as we move away from restrictions put in place as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic, there will undoubtedly be more events, lessons and rehearsals to schedule. It is important to use software that offers the same amount of functionality regardless of input or pupil numbers.

Can the software be integrated within your school IT infrastructure?

Having to duplicate data across different systems can be incredibly time consuming and frustrating. When different software solutions can’t talk to each other they definitely don’t make your life easier! To avoid this it is worth checking that the software you are considering has an API (Application Programming Interface) that allows for integration with third-party software. For example, if your school is using a finance system and you want to use this for invoicing and billing from your department, you will need to check if the music software system you are considering will seamlessly integrate with your school's finance system via an API.

Other areas to consider include:

  • Is the software user-friendly and department specific?
  • Is the software mobile friendly and can it be accessed from anywhere?
  • Is it a cost-effective solution?
  • Will the overall solution also benefit the rest of the school, for example, by enabling safeguarding in tracking where a music student is located at any one time
  • Does the software provider have good support?

Maestro is the market-leading music department specific software and we are confident it meets all the above requirements and more; especially the final point about the support it provides for each customer, as Millfield School explains:

“We received fantastic support and training from the Furlong team. We liked that the software could be moulded to our own personal preferences. Overall, a great piece of software that will help us to run our instrumental lessons/ensembles much more effectively.”

With a quick phone call, we can explore what features of Maestro would be most beneficial for your school and give you an idea of what it would cost to implement Maestro in your music department. We can harmonise your school!

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