2020 – a year to remember! Great plans for a new year quickly turned to ideas of the past as every business in the world had to pivot their structure to accommodate the new normal.
As we head into the new year, let’s look back on the positive things that 2020 brought us. Youth activity centers, just like yours, showed the world their strength by adapting to connect with students and instructors like never before. And along the way, we continued to innovate to provide you with everything you needed to close out another year.
The top 18 product features of 2020 with Jackrabbit Class
The team at Jackrabbit Class spent 2020 releasing new features, refining existing features, and planning for what’s to come. Here’s a list of the top 18 new features that were released this year to give your parents the best experience with your program, help instructors in the classroom, and make life easier for office staff!
1. Absence and makeup scheduling for parents
That’s right – giving parents the ability to schedule absences and makeups on their own from the Parent Portal. This one proved to be a game-changer for a lot of our clients that spend time every day updating absences and helping parents schedule makeups. Of course, you set the rules of what can be scheduled when and where, but taking that off the shoulders of the office staff is a great way to save admin hours or use that time to focus on more pressing tasks.
2. View waitlisted classes from the Parent Portal
When parents are enrolling their students in classes for the new season, they are coordinating family schedules, school schedules, and more. Oftentimes, they choose a class that is full and enroll in their 2nd choice for the time being. As activities get underway and school starts, it’s easy to forget exactly what class they waitlisted for. It was important to allow parents to use the Parent Portal for as much as possible, including viewing waitlisted classes. Fewer emails and phone calls to the office helps you get more done!
3. Online streaming of classes through the Parent Portal
Spot TV and Jackrabbit started working on our partnership in 2019. We had no idea what was about to come but we knew that secure, online streaming of dance classes, swim lessons, gymnastics practices, etc. was a new and exciting service to offer.
For some, this became essential in order to reopen, especially for gyms that needed to close their lobbies but stay Safe Sport compliant. With the integration of Spot TV to the Jackrabbit Parent Portal, parents can easily log in to see their child in class without entering your building or distracting children in class. Talk about a win-win!
4. Accept donations to a charity with ease
One thing I noticed through 2020 is that even when times were hard, people didn’t stop helping one another and it was a beautiful thing! Whether it was a local family in need or an organization they love – people kept on giving when they could. With Jackrabbit’s newest partnership with the Hope Floats Foundation, supporting charities with monetary donations is simple. Parents can login to the Parent Portal and donate at their convenience, any time!
Tell us which charity your program supports in the comments section below!
5. Reload punch cards through the mobile app
Mobile Inventor is the industry’s leading mobile app creator for youth activity centers. Aside from integrating with the Jackrabbit Parent Portal and your website, it’s a great way to build customer loyalty to your program. Especially now when people might not want to commit to a full session of classes, offering a punch card program is a way to keep the money flowing in and it’s super easy to accommodate redeeming and reloading the card as needed through the app!
6. Access to virtual classes through the portals
When the world went virtual, the Jackrabbit team pulled together basically overnight to deliver the ability to add virtual class links to each one of your classes. And with that came the ability for staff, students, and parents to access the classes directly from the Staff and Parent Portals. As rules and regulations change in your area, it’s easy for you to go completely virtual or offer a hybrid schedule of classes to accommodate your families and reach a broader segment!
7. Effective resource management
Being able to attach files to a family, student, class, or staff record was always in the plans for 2020. With the changes that came with the year, it was clear that the original scope of this enhancement needed more.
Enter resource management.
Not only can you attach files to records in Jackrabbit, but you can also add links to important information. Whether it’s a page on your website or an instructional video – the options are endless! Any resources added to a class can also be shared to parents or staff via the portals.
8. Schedule upcoming absences from the Staff Portal
When instructors are taking attendance in class, it’s not uncommon for a student to let them know they will be absent the next week. Instead of then having the instructor remember to let the office know after class, the instructor can go ahead and mark the future absence in the Staff Portal while taking attendance as normal. The more streamlined the process is for staff, the better results and more accurate data you have in the end!
9. Gender inclusion and customization
Gender inclusion is near and dear to our heart as a company that supports youth activities and sports. We truly believe that all children should feel welcome, safe, and included as their authentic selves every day! It was a no brainer to update the software application to allow you to customize gender options or completely hide gender from your online registration form and Parent Portal.
10. Easier personalization of emails
Making emails personal is the best way to catch the recipient’s attention. Jackrabbit made it easier to connect with families by adding the student’s name, as the family contacts’ names. Not only did this make addressing your emails better, but it cut down on navigating back and forth between the account page and the email page.
11. Mass changes to class schedules
Anytime there was a new release that allowed you to do something en masse, I did a happy dance. Being able to drop multiple classes for a student or an entire family is no different. While dropping classes isn’t the most fun thing to do, just imagine the family that has 3 students or the child that takes 8 classes because they are on the competitive team. Dropping each class individually because the family moved is not how you want to spend your time but dropping them all at once makes it a lot better.
12. Record multiple absences for a family or student
If a parent lets you know they are going to be absent from class for a week or two, you can easily record all of the absences at once for the student or the entire family. This is especially helpful when a student is taking multiple classes or a family has multiple students. This can significantly cut down the amount of clicks and I am here for it!
13. Apply credits in bulk to family accounts
Finding credits and applying them to family accounts before your monthly billing process can be very time-consuming. Especially when you add in facility closures during a pandemic and lockdowns that led to more account credits than ever. Here’s another great thing that came out of all of this – quickly searching for those credits and applying them in bulk to multiple accounts at one time. I mean, does it get any better than that!?
14. Automated bulk class discounts for more classes
Discounting and Prorating was a large part of 2019’s enhancement list but it just keeps getting better. Previously, you could set up automatic discounts for students who take up to 6 classes. However, we noticed that more and more of our clients had students taking more classes, especially when they could zoom classes from home! We know it’s important to let Jackrabbit do the work for you so it was a given to increase the automated discount for up to 20 classes.
Ready to learn more about automating your business?
15. Track employee training and industry certifications
It’s important that owners, managers, instructors, and office staff continue to learn and grow their skills and develop professionally. Whether it’s a CPR certification or mastering the Jackrabbit application with our on-demand training system, it’s important to keep track of these accomplishments for performance reviews. And with those certifications that are only valid for a certain amount of time, it’s easy to see who has an upcoming certification due and who is past due.
16. Update accounts and communicate with families easier
Whether you need to contact all of your families who haven’t agreed to your new policies or update multiple family accounts at once, the All Families page is your new BFF. Equipped with smart grids, data visuals, and filters for anything you could possibly dream of, the All Families page just might be the most powerful page in the system to date!
17. Quick access to student data and current enrollment
Modeled after the All Families page, the All Students page has the same power but works with information found on the student record. It’s a great way to see who is spending the most time in your program, add a note to multiple students at once, report on attendance trends, and much more!
18. Simplified navigation with a new menu
It’s possible for a system to be robust and not complicated. And here at Jackrabbit, we want the power of the system to be simple to navigate. This fall, our team introduced the Simplified Menu that not only is decluttered with reduced redundancy but also lays the groundwork for the bigger and better features to come!
Needless to say, this year has been full of excitement despite the challenges we have all faced. As we head in 2021, we are excited to share what’s in store from our Product and Engineering teams as we grow and adapt with you!
Want a sneak peek at the 2021 product roadmap for Jackrabbit Class? Stream BOOST on-demand now for only $19.99!