Is your online teacher evaluation software easy to use? How much training will we need to train our educators and staff? These are two questions that most decision-makers ask us as they are migrating from a paper-based or Google Docs solution to an online evaluation solution. While every sales rep from every vendor will say their software is easy to use, how will you be assured that the solution you pick is indeed intuitive and will require minimal training for your staff?
4 Steps to Help You Evaluate Software for Ease Of Use
Here are 4 recommended steps many schools and districts follow to ensure that they are selecting an online teacher evaluation platform that is easy to use:
- Create an Evaluation Committee consisting of the key players that will be using the software—teachers, principals, IT, administrators
- Make a checklist of typical tasks (conduct observations and teachers provide reflection, upload evidence, reports with graphs on summary of all data from self-evaluations, etc.) that you want the teacher evaluation tool to perform for you.
- Get access to a full trial version of the software so you can take the “test drive” of the software like you do when you buy a car. If no free trial version is available, perhaps this is a red flag.
- Ask each member of the committee to rate ease of use for each of the typical tasks you identified.
You may also want to have your evaluation committee answer the following questions about the software interface and support.
- Is the interface and screen layout logical, effective, and consistent?
- Is the on-screen text clearly readable?
- Can you determine basic functions of the software?
- Did you get lost in the software?
- Is there online support available for the software?
- Does the online support provide step-by-step directions on software features?
- Are there online video tutorials available for review?
- Is there technical support available by phone from a live person or via email?
Besides reviewing a full trial version of the software, have your sales rep provide you with a live webinar or in-person demo of the software features that are on your checklist. Based on your preference, you can do this first or after your “test drive”.
Selecting the teacher evaluation platform that is right for you as well as intuitive to use, will result in a smooth transition and successful implementation for you. If you have additional suggestions to share, feel free to add as a comment to this blog.
To learn more about how TeachPoint’s platform meets your ease-of-use test, please reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org.