Home' Campus Technology : February 2013 Contents CAMPUS TECHNOLOGY | February 2013
nications in the GSU Office of Admissions, recruiters are
now in position to help prospective students through the
application process, in large part because the necessary
materials are immediately accessible via mobile app.
3) Predictive Analytics
In this era of Big Data, centralized storage of CRM data
means one thing: Predictive modeling won't be far behind.
Sure enough, schools are beginning to use CRM data to
predict everything from the likelihood that a student will ap-
ply or enroll to whether he's a dropout risk.
According to Esqueda Schmidt, GSU uses various mark-
ers within its CRM to assign accepted students a rank of 1
to 10 (with 10 the highest), based on the likelihood that a
student will enroll. If a prospective student with a 1 or 2 rank
contacts the school---calls with a question, for example, or
likes a GSU Facebook page---that information is captured
and the student's rank is bumped up a couple of points, trig-
gering a targeted communication from the school to "keep
Georgia Southern in mind."
Schools can also use data gathered during their interac-
tions with students to predict the likelihood that a student
will leave before graduation. According to TargetX's Niles,
the main indicator is a drop-off in attendance, which can be
tracked through the LMS. But, he says, other data points---
a reduction in the use of a student's access card or campus
parking, tracked via the school's ERP---are also factors.
Obviously, the data points that schools use to alert them
to student problems vary from institution to institution. One
school might track sign-ups for classes that are required at
a certain point in the degree cycle; at another school, a stu-
dent's failure to pay fees or sign up for the next semester's
classes might trigger an automatic notice.
4) Personalized Contact
A university's relationship with its students lasts a lifetime,
and CRM systems can help schools nurture these relation-
ships---from the first contact in high school, through stu-
dents' on-campus years, all the way to alumni outreach. At
every stage, personalized touches are key to success, for
students and institutions alike.
For Risa Forrester, VP for admissions and marketing at
Oklahoma Christian University (OCU), the ability to seg-
ment the market using Ellucian Recruiter means the school
can build one-on-one relationships with prospective stu-
dents, and can serve a diverse range of constituents. Using
the Recruiter toolset, for instance, Forrester can send tar-
geted communications to traditional students, international
students, night and weekend students, and other potential
subgroups. Such tailored messages address the needs
and experiences of the students in a more meaningful way,
forging a stronger connection between school and student.
For students who have already embarked on their degree
studies, many CRMs offer retention support (also see "Pre-
dictive Analytics," above). The top reason students leave
college is money, so many CRM systems are now monitor-
ing student financial data to help schools keep students on
track and in school.
Lisa Goldberg, director of Go-to-Market at Ellucian, be-
lieves the CRM tools embedded across Ellucian's ERP of-
ferings---Banner, PowerCampus, and Colleague---can ac-
tually help at-risk students feel connected to the institution.
Schools can communicate with students about financial-
aid information, she notes, "providing due dates, informa-
tion about money that's available, and helping them handle
the problems with money they might be facing."
The better the data, the more fine-tuned the messages
that students can receive from schools. Better data, for ex-
ample, means students don't get spammed with reminders
to make payments or sign up for classes or meet with ad-
visers if they've already completed these tasks. But it also
means that schools can reach out to students in meaningful
ways. With Hobsons' AgileGrad, for example, schools can
You can't really talk about
constituent relationships without
talking about social media.
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