One year since the start of the Coronavirus pandemic, we have witnessed fundamental changes in the way we operate as a society. Globally we have reckoned with outdated working cultures and antiquated systems that are supposedly in place to help us operate as normal, but are actually slowing us down.
During this time, businesses have learned to innovate and adapt more than ever before, allowing us to explore the online frontier and discover just how effectively we could operate in never-before-seen digital capacities. Not only are companies that traditionally run much of their day-to-day online, reshaping core elements of their businesses, but sectors that have operated offline for many years are only just discovering what can be done with the right technology. We have already seen schools shift to an unprecedented online space, but one industry that is also finding a place online, albeit at a slower pace, is childcare.
“The pandemic has challenged many aspects of how we live our lives and how we conduct business. That also applies to the childcare industry,” 1Core Solution Co-Founder Simon Ho says, whose company is providing innovative online solutions to childcare providers. “One critical area that all childcare providers should evaluate is whether they have the right technology solution platform that will help them not only survive but thrive in the ‘new normal.’ ”
Ho believes that the pandemic has allowed us to see the current shortcomings in center management software in the childcare sector. “The childcare industry is still filled with ‘silo’ and outdated technology,” he explains. “Their shortcomings are certainly magnified by the pandemic. The good news is that the pandemic accelerated the development and adoption of the new generation of technology that is designed to deliver peace of mind to all the users in the ecosystem.”
Ho’s business 1Core Solution has been at the center of this revolution, where his team created a one-stop shop childcare software that was designed with many of the concerns of the pandemic in mind. It was created with the intention of giving child care providers more ease and flexibility in navigating the ‘new normal’, also providing benefits to family members and children. Some of the key features include: touchless sign in, daily health screenings, direct messaging, online registration with eSign, fully automated billing with integrated online payment, staff scheduling, family engagement and more.
The team at 1Core Solution operates with the belief that the child care industry is more important than ever during this time. “A significant portion of the U.S. workforce relies on dependent childcare so they can go to work. The pandemic clearly shows why childcare is not only essential but truly the backbone of the economy,” Ho explains.
Despite this, traditionally the industry has been slow to adapt to new technology. Ho believes this is primarily due to the fact that the majority of childcare providers are independent, small businesses that face technology ease-of-use and affordability challenges. With a new generation of cloud-based solutions like 1Core that is designed to be super easy to use and affordable, more and more childcare providers are jumping on the cloud-based, subscription Software as a Service (SaaS) bandwagon. In addition, the current generation of parents with children of childcare age, are digital natives who help to push childcare providers to accelerate their adoption of cloud and mobile technologies.
One of the most recent innovative offerings from 1Core Solution is 1Core Connect. Staff management, particularly staff scheduling, is one of biggest challenges in running a childcare business, in normal time. During the pandemic with highly disruptive enrollment and uncertain staff availability, this key logistical challenge is further compounded. “1Core Connect is designed to make it super easy for the center directors to communicate and schedule staffing more flexibly on a on-demand basis,” Ho says.
“Beside helping childcare providers to connect with their staff, 1Core Connect is designed to allow the child care providers to connect with other fellow providers for community support. The 1Core Connect platform can also be adopted easily by any providers regardless of their existing center management software.” — 1Core Solution Co-Founder Simon Ho
The grand vision for 1Core Connect is that over time it can serve as the industry hub platform for providers, staff and parents to connect with each other.
With the pandemic forcing businesses around the world to pause and take stock, the opportunity to reassess and evaluate how to best future proof businesses has led to many new technologies and software innovations. One silver lining from the pandemic for the childcare industry is that it will accelerate the adoption of technology to benefit the operators, staff, family members as well as the children. Ho is optimistic that an all-in-one, easy-to-use and affordable solution designed to deliver peace of mind to the users will play a key role in this childcare industry transformation for the better.