Best HR Software system for school with about 140 staff

Does anyone have some useful recommendations on which HR software systems would be most suitable for a high performing school with about 140 staff? I am trying to find and introduce an HR system which helps us simplify all HR processes from recruitment to staff development, performance management, payroll interface, attendance management and improve employee engagement? Also, we are a UK registered charity and I am ideally trying to find some providers that would offer discounts to smaller sized charities. Would be great to hear your suggestions.

  • Hi Britta

    I'm currently trying to find one for our MAT (900 staff and growing!) as Sims just isn't cutting it.

    We had HCSS in for a demonstration as they've just released a HR package, which is a bonus if you're using the accounts system too. Demo was good and there's numerous add-ons available.

    I'd be interested to know if you come across any other suitable software.
  • In reply to Kimberly:

    Hi Kimberly - I came across this analysis of HR software for SMEs which seems quite useful:


    However recommendations from users in similar sized organisations would be even more useful!

    Kind regards,

  • Hi Britta, I know you posted this some years ago, but wondering how you got on? I currently work for a Boarding School (charity) with just under 300 staff and looking to introduce a new HRIS. We currently use PeopleHR but are having issues with this, managing all aspects of a boarding school compared to a commercialised company. We're looking for something with a comprehensive ATS system, integrated payroll and link to SIMS, substantial training platform, performance management, absence management and reporting. It also needs to perform as an employee portal for booking holiday, appointments, training logs, performance reviews etc. Thanks in advance.
  • In reply to Sarah:

    Hi Sarah,
    We introduced Cezanne HR at our school about 2 1/2 years ago. Now, I could not imagine managing our HR data in any other way. However, while it covers most of the areas you would like to use the system for (we are not subscribing to the performance management module though) there is no integration with payroll (for that, we are using Moorepay). However, we are able to record pay grades and annual salaries based on working times as well as ancillary payments and allowances and set up salary reports for our finance manager who is dealing with payroll, which is partly outsourced. Hope this helps?
  • In reply to Sarah:

    Hi Sarah, we installed Natural HR about 18 months ago, and I'd say that the implementation is still ongoing (independent day school, approx 200 staff). That's just the nature of schools (only time to focus on any kind of development work in the school holidays!) and a global pandemic hitting. I'm pleased with the work we've done so far, but recognise there's a huge amount more that we can achieve. As a system I'd say it has the advantage of being flexible/customisable which I really value - set against that is the time investment that flexibility requires. Very happy to talk it through if that's helpful.
  • BrightHR - fantastic HR portal interface
  • In reply to Nina Waters:

    Hi Nina
    I would be interested to know if Natural HR also integrates with your Payroll function? We are considering changing our HR and Payroll provider.
  • In reply to Zoe:

    We don't use the payroll system, which didn't exist when we set up our database and is a more recent addition. I can't really help with that system therefore I'm afraid, but happy to chat about anything else.
  • In reply to Nina Waters:

    Thank you Nina. Does it integrate with your existing Payroll system?
  • In reply to Zoe:

    Nothing like that useful I'm afraid, but the issue is with our payroll system. We can use it to share reports and changes, but those are through workflows/email exchange rather than an automated update. I don't doubt that the API could be created (and I think Natural HR does link to several) but our payroll system is definitely in need of review and updating.