Students are doing their homework before making decisions about what college or university to attend. They’re looking for the school that offers the best value for their investment, and often a variance of as little as $100-$500 in net costs can make the difference in whether a student will attend your institution or look elsewhere. This consumer-driven approach means that competition for students is fierce, and subsequently, institutions must adapt with either new or more refined recruitment strategies.
One option is to intersect strategic decision making with data analytics. Today, sophisticated methods for attracting students are being implemented at higher education institutions across the United States. Predictive analytics, financial aid leveraging, geo-fencing, machine learning, regression analysis, and “big data” have shifted the way enrollment management offices conduct activities. However, achieving success in the data analytics arena requires leaders to have significant familiarity with mathematical and technological approaches to strategically market, attract, and support students.
This cannot be done in a vacuum – it requires the cultivation of a data-driven culture, which presents several potential key barriers:
- Limited access to data
- Inability to extract data
- Lack of high quality data
- Siloed knowledge between information technology staff and enrollment management teams
- Lack of skilled staff to prepare and deliver data in a format that is usable to the end user
Creating a data-driven culture is not simple, but it is imperative to be competitive in an ever-evolving and dynamic marketplace. For practical recommendations on how to create a data-driven culture and leverage your data in a more strategic way, read the full article from Enrollment Management Report here.
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