How to Modernize the Higher Education Admissions Process


In a previous post, we discussed how increased competition for students, as well as increased recruitment costs, are forcing higher education institutions to rethink their recruitment strategies. Colleges are challenged to supplement traditional methods such as campus visits and open houses with more personalized outreach via mobile and social media. Many colleges are turning to recruitment software to help them manage, track and optimize recruitment efforts.

Contributing to recruitment complexity is the fact that students are applying to more colleges than ever before. In fact, the most recent State of College Admission report from the National Association for College Admission Counseling found that 32 percent of college freshmen had submitted at least seven applications, a 10 percentage increase over a five-year span. Transfer applications are up as well. Online applications, which now represent more than 90 percent of all college applications, are making it easier to apply to more schools.

Depending upon the size of the school, higher application volume could mean sifting through thousands of transcripts, test scores, essays, letters of recommendation and other materials that may be required. For many colleges, this is still a manual, pressure-filled process, and admissions teams are struggling to meet decision deadlines. Unfortunately, the human component increases the risk of errors and omissions and slows the flow of information throughout the admissions process.

To make the admissions process more efficient, easier to manage, and less prone to error, a number of higher education institutions are using automated admissions software solutions. These tools can be used to provide each prospective student with a personalized, online interface for creating and updating profiles, requesting information, registering for events, uploading documents, and submitting application materials. Online applications can also be customized to establish each school’s unique requirements, such as test scores, fees, residency, interviews and recommendations.

If a student has begun the application process, they can see what steps have been completed and receive alerts and reminders until they’re finished. Access to these accounts is tightly controlled. All interactions with prospective students are tracked and logged, and progress can be monitored through real-time reports and analytics. Admissions teams can filter data based upon a wide variety of criteria.

Specialized admissions software provides admissions teams with one accurate, up-to-date data set for each prospective student. This allows teams to share data, collaborate more effectively, and render admissions decisions in a timely manner rather than pushing paper documents back and forth.

From a business perspective, schools can use admissions software to manage and optimize admissions activities and make better decisions about future recruitment tactics. For example, a school can calculate the ROI of various events and trips and use this historical data to determine if each specific activity should be continued. Managers can also monitor the workloads and performance of admissions staff.

Axiom modernizes higher education admissions by overcoming the challenges of data sharing and data entry, adding efficiency and accountability to admissions strategies, and engaging prospective students in a powerful, personal way. Let us help you take control of your admissions process so your school is better prepared to meet its enrollment goals.