PowerSchool Enrollment Express Review

Karin1108
Journeyman

PowerSchool Enrollment Express Review

We are currently looking into purchasing both PowerSchool Enrollment Express and e-Collect. 
We are trying to find opinions from current users of these products to help in our decision.
 
If you are a district using these products can you answer the following questions:
  1. Pros and cons of using PowerSchool Enrollment Express
  2. What were you using previously for registration/forms?
  3. The difficulty level of transferring to the use of PowerSchool Enrollment Express
  4. Do you also use eCollect form? What are the pros and cons of eCollect if you use.
  5. Any suggestions or other insights you can provide?
Thank you so much for any information you can provide. 
6 Replies
JeromeO
PowerSchool Champion
PowerSchool Champion

Re: PowerSchool Enrollment Express Review

Pros and cons of using PowerSchool Enrollment Express
Pros

  • Vast improvement in simplicity and intuitiveness compared to our previous product (see below)
  • I only have one line here compared to the cons below, but the scope of improvement in usage is far wider than the individual nitpicks I outline below.

Cons

  • Lack of customizability of the pre-registration form. Self-service changes are very limited, and others that CAN be changed require a support ticket. Other portions can't be customized at all.
  • The AutoComm method of consuming pre-reg records results in a deluge of e-mails to your PowerSchool admin account. Make a rule in your mail client to automatically dump those into a subfolder or delete outright because they will fill up your inbox every 15 minutes. EVERY 15 minutes.
  • Student data clutter. All students who pass through the pre-reg phase are brought into the SIS and dumped into a single non-reported "school" that acts as a holding tank. The Transfer Info page for students who go through the enrollment process is a mess because of how EnEx enters a new transfer info record. Those students also persist whether the family completed the enrollment process or not.

What were you using previously for registration/forms?
PowerSchool Enrollment/Registration/InfoSnap/WhateverNameItIsThisWeek


The difficulty level of transferring to the use of PowerSchool Enrollment Express
The mental shift of how forms are presented to families and what the district responsibility is was the toughest to get over because of how different the review/approval process is. But once that's learned, it's smooth sailing thereafter.

 

Do you also use eCollect form? What are the pros and cons of eCollect if you use.

Pros

  • Flexibility and self-service. Make forms for nearly everything you can think of.
  • Expanded audience for form submission. Not just admin portal, but teachers, parents, AND students.
  • Very granular permission and security controls for both forms and elements within forms.
  • Map element data to core PowerSchool fields or custom extensions you've created yourself. Expand beyond built-in form reporting and incorporate form responses into in-house customizations, if you have any or build any.

Cons

  • Limits on the types of forms that can be created. I only say this because we want to push the envelope of what we can do with Ecollect and sometimes, we hit roadblocks because an idea we've had doesn't work in real life or we push beyond what the product was designed to do.
  • Some elements available for use on a form are very, very rudimentary and may be a hindrance more than a help, depending on your expectations and workflow. You only discover this when building forms, though, because it's hard to predict what you want to create and how you'll use it.
  • Built-in form reporting is only useful if you have a small number of clearly identifiable fields on the form. It gets unwieldy for larger forms or forms with repeated elements.

 

 

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Troy School District, Troy, MI, USA
District Size: 13,000+
Server Config: On-prem/Self-hosted 3 app+1 db+2 test

I am not a PowerSchool employee

RichardB16
PowerSchool Champion
PowerSchool Champion

Re: PowerSchool Enrollment Express Review

@Karin1108, you are more than welcome to private message me, and I will be more than happy to talk to you and answer any questions you might have regarding either product, Enrollment Express or Ecollect Forms.

 

I hate to toot my own horn, but you can also watch the video that I made with the sales staff regarding Enrollment Express - https://www.powerschool.com/casestudy/marysville-exempted-village-school-district-flexibility-and-ti...

 

@JeromeO did a great job with his responses, so I will only add a few notes here.

  • I have barely touched my Enrollment Express form in our 4 years using it, so customizing through a support ticket is not a big deal.
  • Definitely set a rule for the AutoComm emails, that is they are even set to go to the correct email!
  • I do a purge at periodic times throughout the year to "transfer out" students who did not finish the enrollment process.
  • For the Ecollect Forms side - if I can't figure out a way to do something, the help desk almost always can.
  • Large Forms need to be broken down into smaller, more manageable screens and exports. If you have any many-to-one tables in your forms, they also create havoc for the normally easy export process.
  • Previously we had a Filemaker database with web access that needed multiple imports and much more difficult maintenance. We started with the old FormBuilder product for our registration process but kept Filemaker as the front end for one more year before they came out with the previous version of Enrollment Express, and have been using both ever since.

 

Hope the additional info helps!



Richard Bernadella
PowerSchool Manager
Marysville Exempted Village Schools
Marysville, OH

Karin1108
Journeyman

Re: PowerSchool Enrollment Express Review

Thank you for sharing your video. It is definitely helpful. I appreciate your response as we make our decision.

 

Karin1108
Journeyman

Re: PowerSchool Enrollment Express Review

Thank you so much for the information. I appreciate all of the input. It is helpful as we make our decision.

cbroadus
Hobbyist

Re: PowerSchool Enrollment Express Review

Jerome,

We recently got contacted about upgrading from Enrollment to Enrollment Express.

It sounds like you've had both products and from your review you'd recommend going to Enrollment Express over Enrollment any day?

I'm just trying to figure out if this is something we should do or if we should just stay with Enrollment. There have been times we have been very frustrated with Enrollment, but we feel like we are somewhat getting it figured out, so it makes me nervous to jump to Enrollment Express and have to "start over" (not that we would have to start from scratch, but it would be all new to us again).

Thanks!

 

JeromeO
PowerSchool Champion
PowerSchool Champion

Re: PowerSchool Enrollment Express Review

@cbroadus sorry it took 2½ months to see your question and respond!  I don't know if you've gotten your answers already, but I figured I'd post a confirmation for anyone else reading who stumbles by.

 

Yes, our experience between Original Enrollment and EnEx/EC has been night-and-day.  When we made the decision to switch, we had just received self-service form dev permission in Enrollment and I had revamped the form packet as a contingency. We were still dissatisfied with the technical support model as well as performance issues that plagued Year-round Update.

 

But overall, EnEx is only one component of the whole package.  For us, Ecollect is where the greater value lies.  I just published a set of forms for students to apply to test out of prereq classes in some subjects. I added more automation to our math test-out form this year in consultation with our secondary math curriculum specialist so that the form grabs the student's current math class and teacher, and the next course in the math progression.

 

The student only has to acknowledge all the requirements of the test-out procedures, and then the schools review & approve (or not). Then they can build their testing session rosters.

 

We also harness extra power by combining the data collected by Ecollect with Freund Resources' sqlReports.

 

There is definitely the hassle of starting all over again. But what we really noticed when we pushed through it, though, was fewer complaints from parents. Set-up and implementation was scary for the same reasons you mentioned -- just getting the hang of the existing product, not wanting to put everyone through learning another new thing, etc.  But after getting past that hump, it's been much simpler overall.

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Troy School District, Troy, MI, USA
District Size: 13,000+
Server Config: On-prem/Self-hosted 3 app+1 db+2 test

I am not a PowerSchool employee