As Digistorm’s Director of Sales and Marketing, Chris leads our client-facing teams with almost as much vigour and enthusiasm as his passion for the golf course.
What does your school’s enrolment process look like? Are you still taking enrolment applications via printed and scanned forms? Although this process is still relatively common amongst schools, it requires a significant amount of time and effort. If you think that it might be time to update your admissions process, here’s a solution that schools can explore to streamline their process and this is an online enrolment system.
Implementing an online enrolment system is an effective way to reduce administrative tasks, make the process user-friendly for parents, and remove all manual data entry from the process. If you’re thinking about implementing an online enrolment system for your school, here’s what you can expect – both for prospective parents and for your school administration team.
Not only does going paperless do a world of good for the environment, but it has a positive reduction in administration time too. It’s the most obvious benefit of implementing an online enrolment system as it boosts efficiency and productivity for schools. Any data that’s collected through an online enrolment form will be sent directly into your school’s customer relationship manager (CRM), rather than needing to be sorted and manually entered into a spreadsheet or database. An online enrolment process also reduces the risk of paper documents or spreadsheets getting lost, deleted, or incorrectly filed.
With Digistorm’s end-to-end online enrolment platform, Funnel, Schools are able to create custom digital forms that can be hosted on their school website. These forms are designed to reflect your school’s branding and can include custom data fields to collect specific information about your applicants. If this sounds a bit too technical – don’t panic! We also provide support and training to all of our schools to ensure the transition goes as smoothly as possible.
As mentioned, many enrolment applications require parents to provide copies of documentation for their children such as identification and birth certificates. To make this process easier for parents, schools can include a section on their enrolment application that has an upload function that parents can access from their computer or mobile device.
Take a look at the example below, from Sunshine Coast Grammar School. Here, parents can easily upload files directly to the application form by selecting or dropping the documents into the upload area.
Our enrolment product also allows schools to send communications directly to parents during their enrolment process. Say a parent started to fill out an online enrolment application but forgot to upload the necessary documentation, your school could send a reminder email to the parent requesting for the documentation to be uploaded. This extra communication and nurturing improves the parent user experience and decreases the chances of form abandonment.
Enrolment form abandonment is when an application is started, but never completed. Users can abandon forms for a number of different reasons but a common influence is a design of a form, the length, the devices it’s available on, and the complexity of the form. Using a well-designed digital form provides parents with a process that they can easily start, pause, and complete at their own pace.
So we’ve covered how the online enrolment process improves the parent experience, but there are also significant benefits for K-12 schools. Once a parent has filled out their application form all of the student’s enrolment data is kept in one place. This is extremely helpful for your admissions team as they can view and update the progress and stages of all of their enrolment leads and send personalized communication where necessary. Communication between your school staff and administration teams can also be increased with the ability to create and leave notes for each lead.
Another benefit of an online enrolment process is that schools can review completed enrolments and even see important information such as where their enrolments are coming from, by using basic analytics in the system. This is handy as schools can attribute different marketing campaigns to successful enrolments so they can see where they should be maximising their social media marketing to drive enrolments. Many schools will also utilise school management or information system’s and Digistorms enrolment product offers a simple data export that can be mapped by the Digistorm team and uploaded directly into a school system. We do the hard work for the schools so that the enrolment information is transferred easily and exactly where they need it.
The handling and processing of offline enrolment payments can be a risky process that can sometimes influence form abandonment, but with an online enrolment application, you can streamline the process with a safe online payment system. Digistorm’s online enrolment platform allows you to offer a secure payment portal on your enrolment applications so that prospective parents are more likely to finish the form and complete the payment. If you want to reassure parents that the portal is secure you can also provide further payment information on the terms and conditions page on your application that outlines fees and payment terms.