Another consideration is whether to include the youngest users. You may take the stance that whatever their age, if they have a device they
need to be protected. We know from our own data that mental health is affecting youngsters as young as five and monitoring can be an
important means of finding those children who may be suffering in silence.
Compare like for like
When considering the price of more than one vendor check that you are comparing like for like. For example:
- Are the services fully moderated or self-service? In other words, is there a specialist team of people checking and grading the alerts,
removing false positives, and alerting you to those you need to be aware of? (Fully moderated). Or will you be expected to go through
the alerts yourselves, and make staffing provisions to do so? (Self-service).
- If fully moderated will all notifications appear inside the dashboard – requiring a DSL or staff member to keep checking in, or will you be
emailed or phoned for more serious alerts – allowing you to focus on other things?
- Is the service school hours only or 24/7? It’s worth remembering how much time pupils spend online in the evenings and at weekends.
We would always recommend 24/7 protection.
- Does the fee include training on the solution itself and support during the technical deployment stage?
- Does the fee include staff, are they extra, or are they free of charge?
Some vendors will offer discounts the more users you have, although do bear in mind that the more users there are, the more trained moderators
the vendor will need to monitor the alerts, so there could be limitations around this.
There are likely no discounts for simply being a school since these solutions are designed for schools and not used in other sectors.
If the vendor is an education specialist, they may have other safeguarding technology solutions and there could be discounts if you are an existing
customer or if you intend to purchase other solutions. E.g. Web filtering, record management, and others.
Check whether the vendor charges annually or every 3 or 5 years and decide whether this is right for your organisation and if not, whether there is
flexibility around this.
If you have any questions or would like a quotation for Smoothwall’s award-winning Monitor Managed Service please get in touch.