3 Things Every School Admissions Director Must Do Now

Back to School

It’s hard to believe that another school year has begun (unless your first day is after Labor Day).

I have always loved the first day of school. From my early days in university admissions to my current role consulting with schools, this is the day I always look forward to.

This is when you get to celebrate the fruit of your year-long labor and see the results of your hard work—new students and families at your school.

While you might be tempted to sit back and bask in the glory of reaching your goals, it is important to take advantage of this moment.

At the start of every school year, it is important for admissions directors, marketing directors, and heads of schools to do three things:

1. Conduct a New Parent Survey – Your new parents have just gone through the enrollment process. They have just been marketed to from you, as well as other schools in your community. What other schools did they consider? Why did they select your school? What marketing strategies were effective in recruiting them to your school? How would they evaluate the enrollment process?

Wouldn’t you like to know the answers to these questions? These answers can help you assess your processes and strategies from this past recruitment cycle. It can also help you improve your plan for the upcoming year. This first step is the foundation for number two and three.

In my work with schools, I have developed a new parent survey. From my standard set of questions, I can adjust the survey to reflect your school, as well as add any additional questions that are specific to your situation and needs. I can put this survey together for you, provide you with the link to send to your new parents to complete, and then produce a report of all of the results. If you are interested in learning more, click on the following link:

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2. Assess your Enrollment and Marketing Results – While you have certainly put in a lot of time and effort in your enrollment and marketing strategies, it is important to spend time assessing the results. Did you achieve your goals? What were the results of the strategies that you implemented this year? Can you actually track the results? What does your data tell you?

It is very important for you and your team to take time away from the office and assess these results. You should review everything that you did this past year. It is also valuable to conduct a SWOT analysis of your enrollment and marketing effort. By completing your comprehensive assessment, you will be informed about what worked and what didn’t work as you develop your plan for the upcoming year.

3. Develop your Plan for 2017-18 – Planning is an important part of this process. Without a plan, you won’t really know where you are going or how you are going to get there. You will need to begin the planning process by developing enrollment goals. These goals should include your total enrollment as well as retention rates and admissions funnel numbers.

After you have developed your goals, you will need to build your plan. This plan should include the strategies that you will implement to achieve your goals. For example, if you want to increase new students by 5%, you will need to align your strategies to achieve this goal.

These three steps are critical for you to take now. Please feel free to reach out to me if you would like to discuss these steps with me.

I will be conducting a Facebook Live session on this topic on Wednesday, August 31, at 2:30pm EDT, if you can join me. Click like on my Enrollment Catalyst Facebook page to make sure you receive my live notifications and join me live.

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