April 13, 2009
Meet Cindy Heitzinger, Skyward Quality Assurance Manager
Born and raised in Stevens Point, Wisconsin, Cindy Heitzinger had her first experience with Skyward software when she worked for the Stevens Point Area School District in their library and office. She worked with the health records and attendance modules and found the Skyward software to be very user-friendly when navigating through the different areas to accomplish multiple tasks. When Cindy started working at Skyward in 1998, she found that her experience with the school district was a valuable asset when assisting Skyward customers.
Cindy worked in Skyward's Customer Service Department for five years and then transferred over to the Quality Assurance (QA) Department in 2003. In 2006 Cindy became the Quality Assurance Manager. The QA Department is responsible for testing all programs developed by Skyward before sending them out to customers and also to ensure the software is current with all state-reporting requirements. Each department member is well-versed in QA testing as well as state reporting requirements for assigned states.
Skyward’s State Reporting Group, part of the QA Department, plays an essential role in developing Skyward’s state reporting portion of the software. Each of the 17 employees in the State Reporting Group maintains a relationship with state departments of education to keep up-to-date with changes or additions in state reporting.
“In the past, Skyward’s Programming Department worked to test state reports,” said Heitzinger. “But with No Child Left Behind and the call for greater accountability leading to increased data requirements in state reports, Skyward saw the need to assist customers by dedicating an entire group to satisfying the unique reporting needs of each state.”
The relationship Skyward’s State Reporting Group has with each state’s department of education helps to ensure the accuracy of the reports in the software. The group actively communicates with each contact from the state departments of education by emailing, calling and attending vendor meetings to learn of any new changes in state reporting. Brett Duvall, the Network Administrator at Fort Leavenworth US 207, Kansas, commented on Skyward’s commitment to being recognized as a qualified vendor in state reporting:
“I was pleased to notice Skyward’s participation in a recent Kansas State Department of Education (KSDE) vendor conference. Their hard work in receiving certification with KSDE clearly demonstrates their dedication to schools," said Duvall.
Maintaining a relationship with state departments of education is not the only way to assure the reports are accurate. The State Reporting Group runs all reports through a series of tests, breaking down each field to make sure the report will run smoothly and accurately. The group also works very quickly, as deadlines are the key factor in getting state reports submitted.
“District funding depends on the accuracy of the information in state reports," said Heitzinger. "Every student is critical and Skyward makes sure the reports are dead-on so districts can get the funding they are entitled.”