Owners of daycare centers, home daycare providers, and preschools are affected by our waning economy. Many daycare centers report that their enrollment rates have decreased as a result because unemployment is increasing. With less clients enrolled, childcare center owners are forced to lay off staff or cut staff hours and reduce services.
OwnADaycare asked childcare center owners and daycare business owners for solutions that may help raise enrollment and get clients back in to daycare. Responses varied:
Joseph Schumacher, CEO of Goddard Systems, Inc., suggests focusing on customer care and client relationships. In addition, Schumacher advises childcare centers to continue to retain professional staff and uphold high-quality standards.
“Child care providers must continue to focus on customer care and building relationships each day. Providers are also staying in contact with families who have had to withdraw, through correspondence such as newsletters and including them in school events. Finally, in some instances, providers must be willing to adapt to families with changing economic circumstances, including offering expanded hours and/or “job interview” care for parents seeking employment.
Retaining and developing a professional faculty is the best way to continue word-of-mouth marketing from current parents. A school’s faculty is the only real inventory it has and parents are willing to pay for the experience these educators offer their children,” explains Schumacher.
Julie Moye, co-owner of Kids ‘R’ Kids preschools in Cary, Morrisville and Research Triangle Park, N.C., also stresses the importance of continuing to provide high quality services, personal touches. Moye also suggests offering scholarships to clients:
“We have offered scholarships to many of our students whose families are in financial difficulty. Kids R Kids operates its schools much like a family, and as a family, we are in this difficult economy together. I think parents appreciate this approach and value this type of loyalty. There is no substitute though for employing the finest teaching staff, management and implementing an excellent curriculum to bring families back to your school,” says Moye.
It may be necessary to consider offering unique and specialized child care services that other daycare businesses don’t offer in order to attract new clients. In this economy it is extremely important to market your daycare business as a high quality and unique business so that it stands out from others. Specialized child care services are in very high demand and offering them can be extremely lucrative for your thriving daycare business. These specialized services include 24 hour daycare, vacation daycare, green daycare, sick daycare, and drop-in child care.
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