Paradigm Trust is a 7-school Multi Academy Trust spanning Tower Hamlets and Suffolk. With Primary, Secondary and Special providers within their trust, they aim to develop and sustain great schools that make a big difference in improving student outcomes.
Our dedicated Customer Service Team sat down with Trust Data and Assessment Manager, Claire Brunning, to understand why they elected to move to Bromcom and the benefits they have experienced by switching to the cloud.
Making the switch
I have been working in schools for a number of years, during which time I have mainly operated SIMS. Over the last five or six years, I have been crying out for change, change which I hoped would be in the shape of Bromcom. Having been to a couple of Bromcom-led events, I was very clear that this was the software that suited our needs best.
We were all ready to action change when the pandemic hit. This meant any potential change of MIS was sent to the back burner.
Eventually, when the pandemic finally seemed to subside, we decided to look again. This process was accelerated with the SIMS contract extension decision and so we moved swiftly to procure Bromcom after a tender process.
All of our schools went live at the beginning of the 2022 academic year and so far, so good!
As I’ve already mentioned, I was familiar with Bromcom, having attended events such as The Shard and had seen, first-hand, what the system was capable of.
We knew, going into the procurement process, that Bromcom’s prestige was in the secondary market but that they also had a firm footing with primaries. John Condon conducted the Bromcom demo and was incredibly helpful throughout, answering all of our questions however specific. Ultimately it was the presentation and functionality that stood out to us.
Some of our staff really have taken to the new MIS quickly. Others have needed additional support but in general, most are now either onboard or almost there.
From my perspective, I’m delighted! I do all of the assessment work and I cannot tell you how much easier it is to create marksheets with Bromcom.
In general, it’s just so much more responsive. My secondary school-based colleague and I created our first assessment together. I then told him the sheet could simply be cloned for the other year groups. He was delighted because the Bromcom assessment system had saved him about six hours work!
Each of our schools has Bromcom’s One-Stop-Shop. All of our academies are now operating the core systems and we have recently introduced MCAS to our primaries. Our plan is to slowly introduce more and more of Bromcom’s modules so that eventually all of our data and third parties are consolidated into one system.
I’m just starting to play around with MAT Vision and plan to show how this can be implemented to our directors and governors around Christmas 2022.
In theory, it should now be far easier to draw through all our data and conduct analysis. I currently have an Excel spreadsheet with about 80,000 lines of data! Though it’s second nature, it will be nice to inspect all of the information with greater efficiency.
I must confess I think the Bromcom Help Centre is first rate. I think the team who put that together must be commended because it’s absolutely brilliant.
If teachers ever have issues accessing certain information or queries on how to conduct certain tasks, I point them in the direction of the help button on the right-hand side of the Bromcom platform. This gives incredibly helpful pointers as well as step-by-step guides. Essentially, staff can triage their own issues and crack on with their work without having to go to others for a solution.
The overall verdict
We’re not looking back, that’s for sure. We’ve been pushing for this change for a long time and are delighted that the transition has gone so smoothly. Our test system went live on the 26th August and yet we were confident to roll out Bromcom fully just a couple of weeks later.
If you’ll allow me one final anecdote to show the advantages of Bromcom; we had conducted the May Census and for some reason could not get it out of SIMS. The deployment team at Bromcom migrated one of our schools earlier than scheduled so we could complete the process. I managed to conduct this entire challenge in an hour, killing off all errors and submitting with no problems whatsoever.
I’d just like to add a huge thank you to the Bromcom team. All the staff have been incredibly supportive and we’re looking forward to exploring all the MIS can do.