Upgrade to Premier Independent School Admission Solution Launched at 2006 NAIS Conference

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PORTAL 3.0 features built-in smart-merge email, enhanced reporting, integrated web applications, and enhanced security.

inRESONANCE, a leading developer of technology solutions for schools and educational institutions, today announced a major upgrade of its premier admission management solution. PORTAL 3.0 is a full-featured admission and enrollment management solution that is easy to use and can be customized by non-technical users. The new version, which features built-in HTML email broadcast, will be shown for the first time at the 2006 National Association of Independent School Annual Conference (http://www.nais.org/), at the Hynes Convention Center, Boston, March 1-4, in booth #124.

“PORTAL 3.0 is the tool that admission directors choose when they get to choose,” said Kevin McAllister, president and CEO of inRESONANCE, Inc. “PORTAL’s easy to understand searching and integrated reporting puts their finger on the pulse of their admission season. The built-in productivity tools save the staff hundreds of man-hours per season compared to the competition, but it is PORTAL’s ease of use that makes it the preferred choice for admission directors and officers.”

The solution manages the entire admission cycle from inquiry to decision, as well as enrollment and re-enrollment. PORTAL 3.0 tracks and reports on inquiries, applications, recommendations and transcripts, file reading, decisions, interviews, tours, visits, sources and feeder schools. The solution’s relational structure easily accommodates multiple families per child and multiple children per family. This means that users can flexibly generate contracts, mailing labels and name tags.

The optional PORTAL Web Services provide integrated web capabilities, including online inquiries, applications and decision notification. Families can log-in to a secure website to learn the status of their application and even receive their decision online if desired. Inquiries taken online can be filtered and reviewed and then be electronically transferred into the system, saving hours of retyping.

A key feature in PORTAL 3.0 is that an admission professional’s productivity is achieved without leaving the solution. Emails, letters, labels and reports are all merged and generated directly, without needing to export to Excel, Word or Crystal Reports. Many of the tedious reports that an office compiles separately in Excel each month are available instantly with PORTAL.

PORTAL 3.0 is an open solution, so reports and views can be customized. Because it is based on FileMaker Pro 8, PORTAL 3.0 provides easy querying without requiring that professionals know SQL. PORTAL 3.0 is also cross-platform, supporting mixed computing environments and seamless data sharing between Windows and Macintosh users.

New Features in PORTAL 3.0

  •      Easy and Powerful Email Broadcast Integration

Using PORTAL’s smart email capabilities, users can quickly send broadcast emails to any group of constituents — without exporting to an email program. Typical merges might include reception invites, interview reminders and missing item notices. The emails can contain HTML forms. These emails can dynamically refer directly to data in the database such as interview dates, child and parent names and reception locations.

  •      Enhanced analysis and reporting for better decision-making

PORTAL lets professionals view their data directly and report on it — without having to export to another application. Rapid analysis and reporting without the need for a data administrator means faster, more accurate decision-making.

  •      Enhanced security

Enhanced security features include connectivity to Open Directory and Active Directory, as well as more granular control of screens and fields. Data can be encrypted on the network.

  •      Faster database query and response

The improved database engine driving the PORTAL 3.0 application is significantly faster, even over a WAN. Without learning SQL, non-technical professionals can create and run their own queries and eliminate having to wait for reports from a database administrator.

  •      Export data in nearly any format

Because data in PORTAL 3.0 can be exported to nearly any major office application or other enterprise database, professionals can easily transfer data to non-PORTAL users. PORTAL 3.0 even comes with both PDF Maker and Excel Maker capabilities, so professionals can convert data into PDF and Excel documents to share with people who do not have access to PORTAL. This means that PORTAL is appropriate for schools that use other systems in other offices.

  •      Enhanced data entry features

The migration to FileMaker Pro 8 brings type-ahead, auto-spellchecking, drop-down calendars, and help menu pop-ups to make data entry even easier.

As with all inRESONANCE solutions, PORTAL 3.0 users can also take advantage of consulting and training services provided by inRESONANCE, as well as tapping into the company’s experience working directly with independent schools across the country and around the world.

Customers Praise PORTAL 3.0

“Every admissions office is unique, so it's a major benefit that PORTAL can be customized for our situation—and customized by a non-programmer,” says Leo Marshall, Director of Admission & Financial Aid for The Webb Schools, Claremont, CA. “On a day-to-day basis, PORTAL provides easy-to-learn and easy-to-use data analysis capabilities, which lets our staff track admission trends and, thus, advise our Board on important strategic decisions.”

“PORTAL lets our office of four people generate the productivity of ten,” said Tom Sheppard, Director of Admission, Stevenson School, Pebble Beach, CA. “PORTAL’s scripting ability allows us to generate large volumes of personalized letters or emails instantly. And the notifications feature allows families to track the status of their application on line, which saves many phone calls and outdated reminder letters on our part. Most importantly, PORTAL puts us in control of the data. When we think of something new that we want the database to do to enhance our operation, we do it ourselves.”

"PORTAL provides a number of time-saving features that increases admission office productivity," said Everett Logan, Director of Institutional Marketing with Northfield Mount Hermon School, Northfield, MA. "The ability to make custom reports saves countless hours of time compiling data, and the ability to create personalized, mail-merged group e-mails directly from the database is invaluable to us for keeping families updated. What I can do automatically in a few minutes with Portal is superior to what would take hours to do manually with all other solutions."

"Since converting from a solution provided by a larger vendor, our experience with PORTAL has been outstanding," said Jon Sheehan, Technology Director, Pomfret School, Pomfret, CT. "The admission office is so far ahead of their daily operations that at times, they think that something must be wrong. They are weeks ahead of where they have been in the past. The first round of admission decisions for day students could not have been more efficient."

Multi-Platform Solution

Because PORTAL 3.0 runs identically on both Macintosh and Windows computers, departments or individuals do not have to change their hardware. Users on either computer platform can now share data seamlessly with each other without any conversion or transfer.

Based on FileMaker Pro 8

The PORTAL 3.0 solution is based on the award-winning FileMaker® Pro 8, the #1 selling easy-to-use database platform. FileMaker Pro 8 recently won “Product of the Year” awards from both PC Magazine and Macworld magazine. FileMaker is a favorite among K-12 schools and universities. More than 10,000 schools worldwide use FileMaker Pro, including the largest 250 U.S. school districts. FileMaker is also used 49 of the top 50 U.S. undergraduate universities and 121 of the top 126 doctoral universities, according to latest rankings by U.S. News & World Report.

Availability

PORTAL 3.0 will be available March 1. For more information about the solution, or to schedule an online demo, contact Peter Baron at peter@inresonance.com or inRESONANCE at 413-587-0236.

About inRESONANCE, Inc.

inRESONANCE (iR), based in Northampton, MA, provides technology solutions, services and web development to schools and non-profits. iR focuses on developing a long term strategic partnership with clients, providing strategic IT consulting in conjunction with solutions and training. iR provides complete CMS-based websites as well as FileMaker Pro-based databases with integrated web applications. The company has deep roots in education, with a combination of more than 40 years of experience in schools. For more information, go to http://www.inresonance.com

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