All Alma SIS Reviews

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Tom

Education Management, 51 - 200 employees

Used unspecified

Review Source: Capterra
This reviewer was invited by us to submit an honest review and offered a nominal incentive as a thank you.

OVERALL RATING:

4

Reviewed February 2024

Alma SIS Review: Great for elementary schools

User Profile

Said

Verified reviewer

Education Management, 201-500 employees

Used daily for less than 2 years

Review Source: Capterra
This review was submitted organically. No incentive was offered

OVERALL RATING:

5

EASE OF USE

4

VALUE FOR MONEY

3

CUSTOMER SUPPORT

4

FUNCTIONALITY

5

Reviewed July 2021

Alma the soul of your education

For a long school year such as a semester or a full year it has been phenomenal as a portfolio for classes with my students

PROS

As a teacher I can say that Alma is one of the best virtual classrooms that I have tried, it is an all-in-one and something that I love is the management of evaluations and students without having to resort to any other external platform. The function that I use the most is evaluative management since right there I can check my lists for the student report card system as well as the grade assigned to the same task and document

CONS

It is difficult to say that Alma has something bad, rather something not so good and that is first-hand integration, but once learned it is phenomenal

Reasons for switching to Alma SIS

Because I needed more control

Ingemar

Education Management, 11-50 employees

Used daily for less than 2 years

Review Source: Capterra
This reviewer was invited by us to submit an honest review and offered a nominal incentive as a thank you.

OVERALL RATING:

5

EASE OF USE

5

VALUE FOR MONEY

5

CUSTOMER SUPPORT

5

FUNCTIONALITY

5

Reviewed January 2021

Excellent, Comprehensive, and EASY TO USE

This has made running our school so much easier. I am so glad we switched from the old software.

PROS

We moved from PowerSchool to ALMA and it is sooooo much better! Everything is intuitive. No paying for extra training for everything. No extra modules being hawked to you every month. No need to pay for someone to "maintain" the software. It isn't some old Database software that you need to learn equations for. It looks wonderful, is easy to use, and super adaptable. All of the new additions that you get charged for with other software are free updates with ALMA. If you do have a problem, ALMA *wants* to hear from you! It's an entirely different relationship. And it has more features. Because it is a modern piece of software and not something based off of antiquated 90's era software, there are more bells and whistles. New options are being added every couple of months. Often based on what the users have asked for. This makes my job 100% easier!

CONS

Some things are still a little complicated but it comes with online instructions to help you along.

Reasons for switching to Alma SIS

The old software was difficult to use and maintain. We were paying extra to be trained on things as simple as taking attendance. It looked like a program from the 90's. ALMA has a wonderful interface and everything is intuitive.

Katy

Used daily for less than 12 months

Review Source: Capterra
This review was submitted organically. No incentive was offered

OVERALL RATING:

1

EASE OF USE

1

VALUE FOR MONEY

1

CUSTOMER SUPPORT

2

FUNCTIONALITY

1

Reviewed February 2018

The absolute worst year I've had as a professional school counselor.

none.

PROS

You can log in quickly. The people who have come in to assist with how horrific this year has been have been mostly humble and at least tried to help.

CONS

Absolutely impossible to have what we need at our hands as high school counselors. Everything is laborious or actually impossible to do. It has taken MONTHS to get even tiny bits of advances to make this usable. Transcripts, which are an essential piece for our kids, took 6 months to have functioning, and they're still inaccurate. Scheduling is months behind because the programming is inept for a school this size. It lacks confidentiality and privacy that's important for our students. Household units are not available, access to other buildings makes it impossible to know who has siblings and other people living in their home, which poses a safety issue when filing reports to CPS, report cards are still completely wrong and inaccurate. I could truly go on for an awfully long time, but I digress. At the end of the day, I think I can vouch for every person in my building when I say that this program was rolled out in a deplorable way, changes and improvements are slow and sometimes non-existent, and it's made me reconsider even working in this corporation due to how terrible this system is. A program in its infancy has been detrimental to every single stakeholder in this corporation, and I've been disappointed since the first day of training in August.

Vendor Response

We truly appreciate you taking the time to help us improve the Alma experience. Change can be difficult, and while most Alma users have had positive experiences, we are continuously improving because our mission of serving educators like you is our life work. Along those lines, we have the industry's leading response time to customer inquiries by a factor of 10. We love working with your corporation because of the positive impact it is having on its students -- and we know its an organization you can be proud to be a part of. Other similarly-sized districts in the Alma family currently enjoy the flexibility, security and power our platform provides - and we'd love to explore how we can bring you to that same opinion. Your account manager will reach out to set up a time to go over (and fix) any issues needing attention.

Replied February 2018

Eric

Primary/Secondary Education, 51-200 employees

Used daily for more than 2 years

Review Source: Capterra
This reviewer was invited by us to submit an honest review and offered a nominal incentive as a thank you.

OVERALL RATING:

5

EASE OF USE

5

VALUE FOR MONEY

5

CUSTOMER SUPPORT

5

FUNCTIONALITY

4

Reviewed January 2021

Easy to Use and Functional

Alma has allowed us to improve our communications within the school and with parents and students. Parents and students can see middle school students' grades and assignments. We also use it to broadcast emergency messages such as snow day closings.

PROS

Alma is very easy to learn and to use. It has a lot of great features that make it flexible for the needs of different schools. Most importantly, the customer service is fantastic. They get back to you quickly, are helpful, even pleasant with some of my "stupid" questions to which I should know the answer and are open to ideas for improvements and new features.

CONS

Some may wish for an "all-in-one" SIS/LMS system. Alma is more an SIS+ with some features that would allow a school to get away without an LMS, but certainly not all the features one would find in a combined SIS/LMS system. However, I think this is a good thing, as it provides flexibility to meet the needs of particular schools. For example, we are a Google Classroom school and don't currently use a full featured LMS such as Schoology or Canvas.

Reason for choosing Alma SIS

Alma was easier to implement then many of the bigger options and had a more up-to-date interface them some of the other smaller options.

Reasons for switching to Alma SIS

Easy Grade Pro, our gradebook for years, was no longer being supported and we needed a new SIS system to replace Rediker, which was not meeting our needs.

Ivana

Education Management, 51-200 employees

Used daily for less than 12 months

Review Source: Capterra
This reviewer was invited by us to submit an honest review and offered a nominal incentive as a thank you.

OVERALL RATING:

4

EASE OF USE

5

CUSTOMER SUPPORT

5

FUNCTIONALITY

4

Reviewed January 2021

Ivana B's Review

PROS

The software enables us to have all the data related to students, teachers, curriculum and assessment in one place. There are many things that are just "one click" tasks and things don't have to be re-done at the beginning of each school year. They can just be copied, transferred, modified... I also like that there is always a solution to everything, even if an option does not exist in the system, the support team helps find ways to make sure we get what we need.

CONS

There are some things that we would like to have. For example: the option to show attendance on the report card per class (as opposed to per day), or the option to include a digital signature on the cover. These are some tiny things that we have found ways to resolve, but we have communicated them with the support team and we feel confident that they take our feedback into consideration.

Reasons for switching to Alma SIS

I'd just like to emphasize (as it doesn't let me choose more products above), we had two products that we used: one for grading (Classroom Monitor) and another one for attendance and other data (Admin +). We made the switch so we can have one system for everything. I am not sure why Alma was the choice but I do know it was recommended by one of our administrators because of their experience with it in a previous school.

Jonathan

Education Management, 11-50 employees

Used daily for less than 12 months

Review Source: Capterra
This reviewer was invited by us to submit an honest review and offered a nominal incentive as a thank you.

OVERALL RATING:

4

EASE OF USE

5

CUSTOMER SUPPORT

4

FUNCTIONALITY

4

Reviewed January 2021

Review for Teachers

I have had a good overall experience with Alma. They have focused on having good customer service and it has worked out well from my perspective as a teacher.

PROS

This is a pretty good product, not perfect, but good. The most useful part here is the link to google classroom for grading. This helps me be able to give feedback in one place and have it connected to my students and their parents. The parts that would be nicer for our specific use would be if Alma would be able to be linked to Atlas, Inc. this is what our school uses for different organizational goals.

CONS

There have been a few glitches in the system that our administration has run into. First dealing with the report cards for 6th grade did not work out with the Semester 1 Reports. So we had to give the parents the Nine weeks report cards for our school. The one part that is disappointing is the link does not work with standards based grading. This problem does not stem from Alama, but is from Google not doing standards based grades. Other than that it has worked much better than the Power School System we had in place before.

Reasons for switching to Alma SIS

Power School did not have an option for standards based grading system that worked well. Our administration had to go through LOTS of hoops to get the report cards looking good.

E.

Education Management, 11-50 employees

Used daily for more than 2 years

Review Source: Capterra
This reviewer was invited by us to submit an honest review and offered a nominal incentive as a thank you.

OVERALL RATING:

5

EASE OF USE

5

VALUE FOR MONEY

5

CUSTOMER SUPPORT

5

FUNCTIONALITY

5

Reviewed April 2020

Great Support!

We have always had great success with Alma. They are supportive, friendly, and responsive.

PROS

The customer service reps are always kind and supportive. They are quick to respond and ready to help out. They even change their software based on suggestions.

CONS

There is nothing that I find to be the least liked about this software. They are always willing to help and update.

Reason for choosing Alma SIS

Alma was more user-friendly and more cost-effective.

Reasons for switching to Alma SIS

Alma was more user-friendly and more cost-effective.

Jenny

Education Management, 51-200 employees

Used daily for less than 12 months

Review Source: Capterra
This reviewer was invited by us to submit an honest review and offered a nominal incentive as a thank you.

OVERALL RATING:

4

EASE OF USE

5

VALUE FOR MONEY

4

CUSTOMER SUPPORT

5

FUNCTIONALITY

5

Reviewed May 2022

Alma Makes My Job SOOOO Much Easier!

Overall, our experience has been very positive. The quick responses to questions and the help available is wonderful! We do have some questions about standardized grading (we plan to tackle those questions this summer!!)

PROS

I LOVE the customer service, everyone is very personable and quick to respond. My questions are answered completely and I am always directed to where I can find answers to my questions. The program is very easy to use and, typically, I can figure out most issues I am having using the resource pages.

CONS

It might be lack of knowledge on our end, but the teachers are not happy with the standardized grading in Alma. I would also like to be able to allow more detailed access to only certain teachers with specified things.

Reason for choosing Alma SIS

We have had Alma previously and it was a good experience.

Reasons for switching to Alma SIS

Powerschool was "clunky" and frustrating. It would sometimes take days or weeks to get the customer service or help needed. Every time we spoke to someone there was a different answer to get where we needed to get. It was not intuitive and it felt messy.

Justin

Education Management, 11-50 employees

Used daily for less than 2 years

Review Source: Capterra
This reviewer was invited by us to submit an honest review and offered a nominal incentive as a thank you.

OVERALL RATING:

5

EASE OF USE

5

VALUE FOR MONEY

5

CUSTOMER SUPPORT

5

FUNCTIONALITY

5

Reviewed May 2020

I Love Alma

My overall experience has been great. As I was the one pressured to find a SIS software program for our organization, I am glad that I decided to go with Alma. I didn't know what the outcome would be but I am happy in the decision that I made.

PROS

It is very user friendly. It has everything that our school needs. It is also syncs data with other programs we use within our school.

CONS

There is nothing I least like about the software. If there is a change I would like to see made, all I have to do is contact customer care and they will reach out to their engineers to see if its possible.

Reason for choosing Alma SIS

I was given a particular budget that I had to work with and out of all the other programs I had looked at within the same price range as Alma, Alma's interface is what stuck out to me the most. Having had to make an important decision like this alone, I would say that I got lucky.

Courtney

Education Management, 11-50 employees

Used daily for less than 12 months

Review Source: Capterra
This reviewer was invited by us to submit an honest review and offered a nominal incentive as a thank you.

OVERALL RATING:

5

EASE OF USE

5

CUSTOMER SUPPORT

5

FUNCTIONALITY

4

Reviewed January 2021

Alma Review

Overall this has been a great student management system from the teacher perspective. It was easy to learn, and just takes some time to get used to the new/different features after transitioning from a different system.

PROS

Alma is very user friendly; you can figure it out without much training at all. The gradebook has great color coding and customization options. Many features have streamlined options such as the "mark all present" for attendance.

CONS

Alma does not currently have the ability to link standards to gradebook assignments in a way that categorizes sub-scores on report cards. I also wish it had features such as a "fill-down" button for gradebook assignments. There's also my multiple "click-steps" to entering a a score in the gradebook, which is tedious at times.

Reasons for switching to Alma SIS

Illuminate was no longer offering student management services.

Mark

Education Management, 51-200 employees

Used daily for more than 2 years

Review Source: Capterra
This reviewer was invited by us to submit an honest review and offered a nominal incentive as a thank you.

OVERALL RATING:

5

EASE OF USE

5

VALUE FOR MONEY

5

CUSTOMER SUPPORT

5

FUNCTIONALITY

5

Reviewed January 2021

Powerful - 21st Century - Highly Recommended

When you have been with company for years is it hard to make a switch. From day one Alma made our transition to their software painless. Lets face it, people do not like change, especially a secretary that has been here for 30 years. Alma made it easy with their robust training and support our secretaries were smiling "like the butchers dog" The days of our principals spending all summer creating a master schedule are over. Alma's schedule builder is amazing! Overall I would highly recommend Alma and If they continue to stay on the cutting edge of innovation we will never need to make another switch.

PROS

There are so many GREAT features about Alma, to list just one is hard to do. I love the feed back that I receive from parents, teachers and administrators stating what they love about Alma. As an technology administrator you only hear when something is not working. Alma provides so many easy to use features everyone loves it. From the administration scheduling, it's seamless integration with Google Classroom, easy custom reports, on-line student registration and the awesome communication link with parents and students.

CONS

Well there really isn't anything I do not like about Alma, they continually update and add new designs and innovation to it's all inclusive student accounting system. Understandably some suggested features take longer to add then others.

Reason for choosing Alma SIS

Alma didn't nickel and dime you with additional needed features and conversion expenses. They had a sense that they were creating a possible lifetime partner. GREAT JOB!

Reasons for switching to Alma SIS

MMS was making and made major changes to their software form switching servers and operating systems, to changing database software. The outages and lack of response and complaints form everyone made me start to my research. I spent months contacting vendors, getting quotes and participating in demos. I contacted other schools from our surrounding area and other states. Alma seemed to always stand above the rest.

Kris

Education Management, 11-50 employees

Used daily for less than 2 years

Review Source: Capterra
This reviewer was invited by us to submit an honest review and offered a nominal incentive as a thank you.

OVERALL RATING:

4

EASE OF USE

4

VALUE FOR MONEY

5

CUSTOMER SUPPORT

5

FUNCTIONALITY

4

Reviewed April 2020

Great value, excellent support

Our biggest benefit with Alma in the last two years was when they implemented their online enrollment process. At the time, we were considering moving from Alma to PowerSchool to gain this function as we were still doing paper application and enrollment. PowerSchool was quoting $20,000 to provide this, and that was a discounted price! Alma's online enrollment was brand new, but I spent a month going through their Study Guide to create our first process. The online support was a huge help! At the end of that 30 days, I was able to confidently recommend to our Head of School that we say "no" to PowerSchool and stick with Alma. This feature and many others have only improved since then. We appreciate that Alma charges us less and lets us create this and other processes for ourself.

PROS

The support for Alma is exceptional! As I am learning to use different features the Help guides & live support answer all my needs in a timely manner. I brag on the Alma support to other companies who are not as helpful. I also appreciate how Alma listens to my suggestions for improvements. In the almost two years I have used the product, I have seen many of the features I have asked for being implemented. I get a regular email (weekly or bi monthly) that updates me on new features and almost every time, there is something there that I have been wanting. You've got to love a company that listens to and responds to its customers.

CONS

Alma has added many features that I didn't even know I wanted - thank you! The only feature they do not yet have is a way to accept and charge for payments. We can track financial info on Alma, but cannot have it accept funds. That would be a huge thing for us because we could eliminate using a separate program for this feature - we actually use two: MySchool and TADS.

Reason for choosing Alma SIS

Cost mostly.

John

Used daily for less than 2 years

Review Source: Capterra
This review was submitted organically. No incentive was offered

OVERALL RATING:

5

EASE OF USE

5

VALUE FOR MONEY

5

CUSTOMER SUPPORT

5

FUNCTIONALITY

4

Reviewed February 2018

Shifting to Alma has positioned us well as we transition our district to competency based learning.

PROS

Alma has a modern interface that is intuitive for our users with all of the information they need right at their fingertips, or one screen away. The student/parent portal is informative and is enabling us to move toward a more paperless registration process. Our teachers love the communication tools built into their grade book that enable them to immediately reach out to a student and their parents without having to jump out of the work they are doing. The report card and grading systems are flexible enough to support both traditional and proficiency-based philosophies. Alma is also proactive in cultivating relationships with third party vendors to add additional functionality to the environment. Alma has also been proactive in monitoring our state reporting requirements and updating our state report templates which is no small task. And Alma's support team is nothing short of amazing. My teachers have the freedom to reach out and get the support they require and that is priceless.

CONS

There were a few features I would have like that did not come "out of the box" such as robust reporting tools, and built-in scheduling tools. That said, Alma has worked to integrate those into the system and future users will not have that problem. The one other piece that I believe is in process is updating the transcript system so that it employs the same interface as the report card generator.

Anonymous

51-200 employees

Used daily for less than 6 months

Review Source: Capterra
This review was submitted organically. No incentive was offered

OVERALL RATING:

1

EASE OF USE

3

VALUE FOR MONEY

1

CUSTOMER SUPPORT

3

FUNCTIONALITY

1

Reviewed January 2020

I want to love Alma but...

I really want to love Alma. There's so much potential but the problems we are running into keep building up and fixes are few and far between. Luckily we only have about 1000 students and a few schools. I don't know how we would manage if we were a larger organization.

PROS

It's the only SIS that looks like it was designed in the past decade. The site itself is easy to use. The basics (scheduling, attendance, calendar, student bios, medical) are all well done, user-friendly, and look great. Gradebook is excellent. Frontline support is helpful.

CONS

Reporting is a nightmare. Reports come in random formats. The descriptions are confusing. The filtering is confusing or doesn't work right. The screen where you choose reports is just a long confusing list. There's no preview of what the report is or looks like. Some information that you'd expect to be readily available (like a student's current grades) require running one of those confusing reports to find. The district portal is useless. New features that have been added (fees, report builder) feel unfinished and lack basic functionality that one would expect. While the front-line support is good, anything that has to go beyond them gets lost in a black hole when sent to "engineering". There are some quirks to the program that just make no sense. Little things here and there.

Reason for choosing Alma SIS

User interface, modern design, promises from salesperson

Reasons for switching to Alma SIS

Modernization

Vendor Response

Sorry to hear you aren't sharing the common elation of switching to Alma that nearly all of our customers experience. It sounds as if you may have actually missed out on some introductory training, and we'd love to set that up for you. As you have chosen to keep your identity anonymous, I cannot flag your concerns to your account manager. Looking forward to hearing from you soon via Capterra so we can remedy this. Update: Hello again! It's been almost a month, and we haven't heard back from you yet. We really would like to address your issues. Our customer service staff is ready and waiting!

Replied February 2020

Lynette

Education Management, 51-200 employees

Used daily for more than 2 years

Review Source: Capterra
This reviewer was invited by us to submit an honest review and offered a nominal incentive as a thank you.

OVERALL RATING:

4

EASE OF USE

4

VALUE FOR MONEY

5

CUSTOMER SUPPORT

5

FUNCTIONALITY

4

Reviewed May 2019

Alma: A Teacher's Point of View

Our overall experience has been satisfactory. We rarely have the "drama" we dealt with when using our previous software. Keeping up to date more quickly and making changes to make the teacher use more efficient and faster would be of big help.

PROS

Our school was first drawn to Alma because it combined a good software to meet student, parent, and teacher needs with great value. Customer service is fantastic. If any of us ask an online question, help is quick.

CONS

Alma takes a long time to keep up with the times. For example, we have used it several years, but they just added the ability to enter a score on one student's grade book for a given assignment, and then hit enter, and then an automatic opening to the next student's grade to enter. In effect, it now performs well with a number key pad. Entry was singularly entered one a time which was so slow. In addition, there should be a quicker way to approve report cards. Finally, because we want students to monitory their grades, it would be helpful for them to have their own password access for limited viewing, keeping the parent password private for fuller access.

Matthew

Education Management, 11-50 employees

Used daily for less than 12 months

Review Source: Capterra
This reviewer was invited by us to submit an honest review and offered a nominal incentive as a thank you.

OVERALL RATING:

4

EASE OF USE

4

VALUE FOR MONEY

5

CUSTOMER SUPPORT

5

FUNCTIONALITY

3

Reviewed July 2021

ALMA Year One Review

Alma has been highly responsive. Their customer service beat all other SIS products that we have worked with. Many of the issues that we are having are due to a specific issues to California schools.

PROS

ALMA is colorful with a high ease of use for parents and students. It is easy to access and manage student and school data. Class scheduling is a breeze. We can accomplish more in one day that we could in one week with our previous product.

CONS

Printing report cards is a disaster. There is no option to batch print report cards all in one job. There is no page break option, so RCs end up getting copied to the backs of one-another if they have an odd number of pages. The only option is to print each .pdf individually. There are several remaining issues with data reporting for California accountability reports.

Reason for choosing Alma SIS

Cost, customer service.

Reasons for switching to Alma SIS

Cost, end-user experience.

Susan

Education Management, 501-1,000 employees

Used daily for less than 12 months

Review Source: Capterra
This review was submitted organically. No incentive was offered

OVERALL RATING:

1

EASE OF USE

2

VALUE FOR MONEY

1

CUSTOMER SUPPORT

2

FUNCTIONALITY

1

Reviewed March 2018

Dysfunctional, Disorganized, Shallow, Time Consuming, Primitive, Not intuitive, Poor Design

None

PROS

I have found little positive to say about the functioning of the software. It does not fit the size of our organization and the design structure is too primitive. There are too many steps involved for transactions.

CONS

*the que*lack of confidentiality*process of accessing information, having to scroll through entire population to select students for reports*scheduling functionality is primitive* data reliability and validity for student grades and transcripts* student and parent use has diminished* report card processing is cumbersome* student display of schedule; no full year* student print out of schedule and on and on

Vendor Response

Wow, Susan. We are dismayed to see your experience with Alma doesn't match the rest of our users! Thank you for the feedback. As you can see from nearly all of Alma's other rev