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Hope to see you at the UCAS Annual Admissions Conference 2014!

We're proud to be bringing Student CRM to the UCAS Annual Admissions Conference in 2015. Click here for the 2015 details.

We're pleased to announce that, once again, we are exhibiting the UK's most loved student recruitment software, Student CRM at the UCAS Annual Admissions Conference at the Celtic Manor, Newport in Wales from Monday 14th April to Wednesday 16th April 2014.

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Pop by and say hello (stand 5) just look out for the lime green stand handing out pick and mix sweets! We're looking forward to meeting Universities and Colleges from across the UK. 

If you're responsible for student recruitment at your University and would like to enhance your student recruitment process and activities, simply book a free demo of our 21 apps and we can give you a live demo at the conference.

Drop into the stand to say 'hi' to Dom, Peter and Andrea!

Managing Student CRM Projects

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We manage the implementation of your Student CRM using professional Project Management software, and following established PM practices to ensure success.

The online tool we use is called TeamworkPM. For a quick overview watch this video:

This tool allows you to monitor progress on your desktop, laptop or tablet, in real time. You can get involved at whatever level you choose and we can invite your colleagues in too.

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We assign you one Project Manager here at DH as well as several DH team members, all of whom are visible in TeamworkPM.

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We break the project down into Milestones and work with you and your team on Tasks to achieve those milestones in time.

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By encouraging open communication streams between project team members we are able to respond to changes.

  1. We manage your project including allocating task responsibility, timescales and milestones to individuals.
  2. You can satisfy your senior stakeholders by producing reports, visibility of the plan and Gantt charts showing progress towards delivery.
  3. You can stay up-to-date with daily task updates by email, simply ticking tasks off when you have completed them.
  4. We can order the tasks into priority and set dependencies between tasks - one task can’t start before another is completed.
  5. You can use the Apple or Android app on your tablet when away from your desk.

Whether you are new to implementing new IT projects or are a battle-hardened Prince2 practitioner, we will ensure that the implementation of your Student CRM stays on track and you stay fully informed throughout.

Universities register Open Day attendees with tiny barcode scanner

Do you scan barcodes to register students at your open days, and keep queues to a minimum?

Only if you are using Data Harvesting's Pre-Applicant Open Days or Applicant Open Days apps, that produce personalised programmes for each student with a barcode printed on.

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Welcome each student personally and scan their barcode to keep the queues down.  The next generation of handheld barcode scanners* are so small you can wear one on a lanyard all day and scan each student in less than a second.

No more bottlenecks as students arrive – clients using our system easily scan several thousand students using these barcode scanners.

Monitor registrations and attendance, and student feedback, via our reports.

  • improve internal workflows
  • replace repetitive human tasks and eliminate human error
  • reduce processing costs
  • speed up fulfillment turnaround times
  • reduce traditional costs
  • free up your key staff to concentrate on core tasks

* Our system works perfectly with the wonderful pocket-sized Opticon OPN-2001 Barcode Scanner

A good CRM improves your league table position

Gaining a better position in the league tables in what we all aim for. Marketing to those students who you really want to study at YOUR university is a vital key to your university's continued success.

We're happy to see that several of our university clients appear within the top 20 universities in the 2014 League Table University Guide by The Guardian again. We like to help our clients to gain a higher position in the league table, but fully acknowledge that our Student CRM is but one part of the story. The part we know about.

Having a valuable CRM makes a whole world of difference to your recruitment activity.

  • Better targeting and qualification of students
  • Personalised marketing communications
  • Automated touchpoints within your workflows
  • Better activity log of the student journey
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Students feel more loved and valued and are more likely to enrol with you. And so, assuming everything else is equal, with your improved engagement and numbers comes league table promotion.

Student CRM Recruitment Funnel

Do you know what your University's Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) are for the current recruitment cycle?

  • How engaged are your prospects?
  • How many will apply?
  • How many will enrol?

The Student CRM Recruitment Funnel below displays the journey a student makes from initial enquiry (alongside tens of thousands of others) all the way down the funnel to enrolment (a few thousand) at the bottom.

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KPIs help you to simplify your numerous and often quite separate recruitment activities into simple numbers.

Take the following sample figures:

  • KPI 1: Interested = 50,000 prospects
  • KPI 2: Engaged = 20,000 prospects
  • KPI 3: Applied = 10,000 applicants
  • KPI 4: Accepted = 3,000 applicants
  • KPI 5: Enrolled = 2,950 students

From these KPIs you can see your engagement rate is 40%, your conversion rate is 29.5%, and so on. This information supports your recruitment decision-making for the rest of this cycle and into future cycles too.

KPIs play a vital part in helping you shape your student recruitment activities.

The student recruitment process becomes more and more focussed as the student moves down the funnel, becoming more interested and closer to applying, accepting and enrolling. Therefore it is important that your CRM supports your team effortlessly ensuring consistent communication with students, engaging with them fully at every stage of the process by sending automated communications from your specified workflows and touchpoints.

Answer students' email enquiries faster with Inbound Emails

We have released our new 'Inbound Emails' feature that makes email enquiries much easier to handle.

When a student sends you an email enquiring about studying at your University, how do you know if you already have that student in your Student CRM?

How do you add that email as an enquiry for your Student CRM team to deal with, ideally alongside the other enquiries that come in from your website's Enquiry form?

Use the new Inbound Emails feature to automatically create new enquiries in your Enquiries app.

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Simply forward any student enquiry email from your inbox to the Student CRM, and make it easy to handle all your enquiries within your Enquiries app in the Student CRM instead of relying upon your email inbox.

Seconds later, the email arrives in your Enquiries app. You simply read it and reply. If you like you can edit the message to remove any unwanted text to tidy it up.

A new student record is automatically created in your Student Database (unless that student already exists, in which case the enquiry is added to the student's record). Your department can even set up a new rule / redirect from your inbox which automatically forwards emails to the Student CRM, hands-free.

Clever stuff huh?!

And the best bit? It's completely free and already waiting in your Enquiries app for you to start using.

That's not all, we've got more exciting features to announce later on this month.

Flattering prospectuses ‘mislead’ students

David Matthews writes in his article in THE that some University marketing materials do not always reveal the true picture.

Universities invest a considerable amount of time and money each year planning, designing and writing their prospectus, painting an idyllic picture of university life. Some are also however embellishing facts and polishing certain statistics in order to promote themselves. Mmmmm. Desperate measures in tough times?

Read David's full article here:

http://www.timeshighereducation.co.uk/tablet/EA4021A2/2010564.shared

Here at Data Harvesting we believe that time spent on engagement is the better alternative. Authentic engagement.

Improving the process of actually getting your prospectus to the student and facilitating proper engagement with your institution should be the goal. Leverage the powerful features of today's modern student recruitment systems like our Student CRM, which manages the whole process simply and efficiently, doing the hard work for you.

How a CRM builds trust and authenticity into messaging.

When a student visits your University website, do they engage like Sam in this example?

  • At 11:00am Student Sam completes the online Prospectus Requests form.
  • She gets an instant, personalised, branded email thanking her and confirming that her prospectus will be posted soon (AUTO).
  • At 3pm a PDF file of ready-to-print labels is automatically emailed to Recruitment Officer Chris in the office who mails out prospectuses each day. Sam’s address is in that daily file and gets posted out.
  • Sam’s prospectus arrives by post the next day.
  • One week after requesting, Sam gets a personalised email with more useful information (AUTO).
  • Another week later, Sam gets an email with a link to book on an Open day (AUTO).

AUTO: set up in advance and 100% branded with business rules and merged personalised content, these communications increase your accuracy, responsiveness and engagement appeal. Our Student CRM’s Prospectus Request app allows students to request a prospectus by post, download or email and follows up each student with a personalised contact plan to ensure student satisfaction with an accurate and instant automated service.

So as you can see, it’s all very well attracting new students with brightly coloured, smiley-faced prospectuses oozing with exciting “facts” but this needs to be backed up with a professional automated engagement process which allows you to follow the student journey through the initial enquiry, prospectus, open day, application and on to enrolment.

Contact us today to book a free Student CRM demo to see how it could improve your student recruitment.

Student CRM satisfaction promotes University league table climb

Is it true that student satisfaction is amongst the most easily and rapidly affected part of the rankings scoring system? Can short-term gains in advancing through the rankings be achieved by focussing on student satisfaction to the degree that it is assessed in the ranking process? Where are you in those all-important University league tables?

Is it far easier to satisfy students than to build a better reputation for research?

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Certainly student recruitment officers have a natural feel for and understanding of customer satisfaction in their private lives as demanding consumers of all the goods and services required to negotiate adult life. So it is an easy initiative to graft student satisfaction into the recruitment process.

We all have a natural sense of when we are experiencing good or bad services and communications. We also have ready tools and techniques at our fingertips to deploy the fixes. Technology tools like recruitment software is now strengthening universities up and down the UK as the student (customer) demands satisfaction (service).

Not only does a focus on student satisfaction drive your University up the league table rankings but you also recruit more/better students as a happy consequence.

Working with Universites around the UK, we help our clients to discover that our Student CRM is a capable and flexible student recruitment platform with which to execute their student satisfaction strategy once written. The results materialise in Year One for recruitment conversion and in Year Two for rankings (all else being equal).

Stephen Gibbons (LSE has climbed to no 3 in this year's University league table), author on the SERC Blog wrote on Tuesday, 1 October 2013:

"…. a 10 place move up a table of 100 universities only increases applications by around 2-3%.  An improvement in position encourages a slightly more able pool of applicants (based on A- level tariff points). The effect of changes in league table position is also slightly bigger in subjects and places where there are more providers from which to choose."

 Why not book a free demo!

UK Govt abolishes undergraduate student cap for universities

Yesterday the Times Higher Education revealed that Chancellor George Osborne has announced that the government sets to abolish the cap on students numbers in 2015.

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He also stated that there will be an extra 30,000 students places next year as an interim before the cap is completely abolished.

The change comes as a result of 60,000 young people each year who have the relevant results are prevented from going to university because of the capped figures.

So with increasing numbers of students expected to apply and be offered places, naturally more university resources will be required to fulfil these places and put an extra strain on recruitment staff following through the journey of each student. This surge of new students is easily handled by the Student CRM, making admin, marketing and recruitment employees' lives simpler by automating processes and making it far more efficient for higher educational establishments to recruit students.

It is excellent news for students, universities and the UK as a whole. There has never been a better time to buy a CRM for your student recruitment.

75% of students have their mobile on them 24/7

Today's students expect mobile. Tomorrow's students live it. Many other sources state that mobile is becoming increasingly important for higher educational establishments to utilise in their marketing and attracting attention throughout the user journey process of recruiting students.

  • 93% of students feel their smartphone makes life easier
  • 58% of students can't go an hour without checking their phone
  • 94% of students text every day
  • The average teen sends more than 50 texts a day

The latest trend is SoLoMo - meaning social, local and mobile is the best way to reach your audience. With this in mind, Student CRM has devised a selection of apps geared towards attracting and retaining students, from the birthdays app which sends a personalised birthday message on their special day to the mobile event capture app which quickly and efficiently captures students' details at open days and various events. Check them out and see which ones could best aid your recruitment process.

Source: Ellucian

500,000 little code buds blooming

Our Cloud CRM solution never stands still.

Whilst it's taken over 3 years to build and develop the latest version of our Student CRM with its 21 pick and mix apps, everything has advanced again since we rendered this cool visualisation. Running from our in-house development team's log files, this video transforms code into beautiful buds that bloom before your eyes. This is our 'behind the scenes glimpse' (a bit like the latest popular John Lewis advert, just a bit less festive).

Watch the video below to see years compressed into seconds and what it takes to build the UK's best-loved Student CRM.

Your international treasure chest

A recent article in THE written by Jim Northover states that UK institutions aiming to reach overseas student markets must keep branding firmly in mind.

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It is clear that the UK government sees international higher education as a key potential source of income for the country and that it is ambitious for growth. It is estimated that international student numbers will grow by as much as 20% over the next 5 years, resulting in 90,000 additional students. That's A LOT of new students for universities to market to and target. Luckily Student CRM makes the whole student journey a simple process for the recruitment teams, even sending an email or text message to students in the database on their birthday.

University College London seems to be following the government’s suggestion to tailor-make courses to suit other nations’ requirements, while claiming consistency with its own brand positioning as “London’s global university” making them attractive to both UK and overseas students.

Our Student CRM's courses app is excellent for managing different courses for different entry years and can easily be amended to add additional ones.

With all these extra students in the UK competing for places on courses within top universities, Student CRM ensures that the student journey from initial enquiry and prospectus request, to open days and applications is smooth and seamless.

Click here to read the full article on THE

UCAS DIGI

In October we took our Student CRM to London to exhibit at the UCAS Digital Marketing & Social Media Conference.

We attended some really great seminars and met plenty of digitally like-minded people. Conference host Andrew Hargreaves said "student recruitment is now all about acquisition and conversion" which of course our Student CRM is geared towards.

Another hot topic also on the agenda was mobile marketing. Mobile is key to student engagement; experts predict that, in 4 years' time, 98% of students will own a smartphone - indicating that all digital strategies must include now mobile.

Which is partly why we developed our Mobile Event Capture app due to the need to be able to capture data at events or whilst out on the road.

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Jamie Smith from South Staffs College won praise and admiration (and gasps!) from follow delegates when he spoke about their 25-second online application form! Making the whole application process super simple for busy students.

And Jim Tudor urged delegates to think SoLoMo = Social Local Mobile.

Data Harvesting's Student CRM was even top of the leaderboard for Tweeting whilst at the exhibition for a few minutes but I think Jamie Smith overtook us in the final furlongs.

A big thank you to the talented Events & Technical Co-ordinator Justine Atkin from UCAS for managing this wonderful event. Here are a few snaps from the conference:

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Student CRM is exhibiting at the UCAS Digital Marketing and Social Media Conference on Friday 18th October 2013

The Student CRM roadshow is always out and about. Student CRM is next exhibiting at the UCAS Digital Marketing and Social Media Conference on Friday 18th October 2013. Come to London and take a look at the UK’s most loved ‘Student CRM’ – our cloud computing SaaS solution for Universities and Colleges. Besides meeting the Data Harvesting team on our exhibition stand (yes, lots of free giveaways again!) you have plenty to discover on this one-day conference for Marketing and communications professionals from the higher education sector:

UCAS describe this event as:

The Digital Marketing and Social Media Conference 2013 will be focussed on providing the tools and knowledge to help you enhance your digital marketing potential.

Key themes for the conference include:

  • Maximise audience reach, minimise cost - 25 digital trends to take away - Future Index
  • Higher education - why is a user experience led digital strategy so important now? -Webcredible
  • How Google Panda and Penguin have created the 'new SEO' - Emarketeers
  • Delivering an Exceptional Student Experience - IBM and South Staffordshire College
  • Social Media best practice - nurturing your digital customer - Havas People
  • Student engagement through mobile technology

Who should attend?

Marketing and communications professionals from the higher education sector.

Plenary sessions

Break-out sessions

  • The key components of a successful online brand
  • Optimising your digital assets for mobile devices
  • Email campaigns - personalisation and amplification
  • Social Media best practice - nurturing your digital customer

Product demonstrations

Networking opportunities to share knowledge

Student CRM is exhibiting at CASE Europe in Manchester

If you are already registered for CASE Europe from 26th to 30th August 2013, do pop along to our Student CRM exhibition stand. You can see why we are passionate about providing the UK’s most loved ‘Student CRM’ – our cloud computing student recruitment SaaS solution for HEIs. If you have yet to register for CASE, take a look here: www.case.org/Conferences_and_Training.html

View the CASE Europe Annual Conference 2013 Programme

The Future of the Higher Education Curriculum

Data Harvesting exhibited at this year's ‘The Future of the Higher Education Curriculum' conference held on Thursday 13th June 2013 at The Royal College of Surgeons of England, Lincoln’s Inn Fields London.

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Thank you to our existing CRM clients who visited our exhibition stand and helped us to get rid of more sweets (you are good!). As you know we don't like to take leftover sweets home following an exhibition.

Great to meet new CRM-curious friends on the day. A big hello to Gavin, Mandy, Jane, Kathryn, Linda, Stella, Charlotte, Andrea, Karen, John, Malcolm, Maggie, Simon, Ross, Linda, Chris and Craig.

Spot the Data Harvesting choristers?

Craig Yates (yes THE Craig Yates from Only Men Aloud) assembled a 60-strong choir from the delegates attending the 3-day UCAS Admission Conference in Newport, Wales in March 2013.

Andrea Finnagin and Dom Yeadon from Student CRM specialists Data Harvesting were amongst its number. Great fun, especially as none of us knew we were going to a part of Craig's choir until the day it happened! And a big thank you to Craig Yates - what a superstar!

Not sure Sony will rush to sign us, but we make a happy sound!

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Video: The Data Harvesting singers in full voice at The Celtic Manor Resort to a packed conference hall. Great fun and amazing results considering we only met each other to form this temporary 60-strong choir of sopranos, altos, tenors and bass, and had 100 minutes of rehearsals!

Pick and Mix Apps is a sweet success at UCAS

With over 9kgs of pick and mix sweets given away so far on our stand at the UCAS Admissions Conference in Newport, Data Harvesting's Student CRM stand has certainly been a sweet success. Our 21 pick and mix apps are all geared towards Student recruitment, so the Student CRM is certainly catching the attention of the 400 delegates.

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This has been a great chance to catch up with clients old and new, and make many new friends. Hello to all our HE clients - great to see so many of you! And to new friends Steve Crompton and Marta Texidor from Microsoft's Yammer - worth checking out their tech below.

One highlight on Monday (apart from naming our Quiz team the imaginative 'It's bad karma to harm a llama farmer') was singing in the 60-strong Only Admissions Aloud Choir Challenge assembled from delegates on the day and performing live on stage on the last day.

The adoption of CRM by HE continues to be strong, as VCs across the country demand accountability from their Recruitment Heads. The blend of multiple different and complimentary marketing activities is vital in strategic decision-making. We are pleased to be able to make that process a whole lot smoother, accurate and faster with our built-in reporting.

Back to the conference now.

Newest Student CRM at UCAS Admissions Conference

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Data Harvesting will be unveiling its newest Student CRM at the UCAS Admissions Conference at the Celtic Manor Resort, Newport between Monday 25th March and Wednesday 27th March 2013. Already causing quite a stir in the student recruitment marketplace, this new CRM continues to win business from UK Universities and Colleges.

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Come and visit us on stand 5 to see for yourself how to recruit more students with Data Harvesting's Student CRM.