Management Information System (MIS) for schools
Data and Insight | School Operations
Category : Blog
School Data Managers play a vital role in how schools run, yet they can sometimes get forgotten. Doing everything from resetting passwords, to churning out graphs and spreadsheets – it’s a really varied role. Often as one of the only members of staff with highly technical skills, it can sometimes seem like magic how Data
School Data Managers play a vital role in how schools run, yet they can sometimes get forgotten. Doing everything from resetting passwords, to churning out graphs and spreadsheets – it’s a really varied role.
Often as one of the only members of staff with highly technical skills, it can sometimes seem like magic how Data Managers are able to transform data into something understandable for other staff. But behind the scenes there’s a lot of (usually manual) work involved.
Arbor Key Account Manager, Leanne, who worked as a Data Manager for almost 12 years, mostly for large secondaries in London, shares her insights into what this important role involves day to day.
“Being a Data Manager is a really rewarding role, especially in the right school and I am lucky to have worked in some of them. I loved my job, loved helping people and seeing small things I did have big ripple effects on the staff and students I worked with.”
The role of Data Managers is varied and complex, with the results of their work driving a lot of the decisions made in schools. Depending on the school, the Data Manager will either be relatively specialised on data analysis or perform quite a generalist role, covering IT and systems admin. Some Data Managers are responsible for exams and timetabling, whilst some schools have separate Exams Officers and Timetablers. Schools also usually have a separate Attendance officer who handles attendance data.
The general areas of oversight for a Data Manager are usually managing the core systems of the school, including the MIS (Management Information System), collecting data from Teachers, generating key reports for SLT and Heads of Department, and managing statutory reporting and census.
Data Managers are expected to be the expert on everything about all software in the school. A large part of the role is therefore training colleagues on how to use new systems, as well as supporting them on how to manipulate and learn from data.
In busy schools, staff roles often include lots of other responsibilities around school, and the Data Manager is no different. They will commonly have lunch or break duties, and will often help colleagues out with general daily tasks like answering calls, covering reception, post, collecting students from classrooms and taking them to reception.
Data Managers often have to also respond to urgent queries or requests from colleagues that could come at any time, sometimes when they’re halfway through doing something else. The most time is usually taken up with working out exactly what the staff member is looking for, for instance what they want to use that piece of data or report for, before they can work out a solution.
Data analysis and reporting
Statutory reporting and census
Arbor’s built-in data dashboards give staff at all levels accessible data they can understand and act on day to day. In fact, 81% of Arbor users say Arbor has improved how they understand and analyse their data.
Data Managers say this helps reduce their workload as staff can complete their routine reporting without having to go to their Data Manager for every small request. Instead, Data Managers have more time to get on with the deeper, more satisfying analysis that they love. Our Microsoft Power BI Connector, for example, makes it easy to explore Arbor data in the popular analytics tool, Power BI.
Read more about Arbor’s Microsoft Power BI Connector here. If you’re an Arbor school and you’d like to get started with our Microsoft Power BI Connector, get in touch with your Account Manager at email@example.com .
Discover 5 ways Data Managers are using Microsoft Power BI today
Hear more from Kate Ferris, Data and Systems Analyst at Baxter College, about how using Arbor has transformed how she works with her colleagues.
If you’d like to find out how Arbor could transform the way you work, come along to our free webinars to see the system in action. You can also arrange a personalised demo here or get in touch with us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 0208 050 1028.
You can also download our guide to Arbor for Data Managers for free here.
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