Improving Higher Ed Processes & Productivity Starts With Your Inbox

TargetX Summit | Best Practices in Higher Ed |

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Woman Checking Email On Laptop

Your work in higher education likely involves recording a lot of data related to conversations and follow up with students. Managing communication touch points and nurturing relationships across the student lifecycle amounts to a lot of time spent on recording relationship progress activities.

If you’re already using a CRM, like TargetX or Salesforce, then there’s a place where all that information is supposed to live—where any relevant party can have easy access. But with CRM adoption averaging 50% of individuals within an organization, half of the people on your campus aren’t properly recording activities and tasks.

The secret to finding success across departments within an institution lies in the ability to increase campuswide CRM adoption. The easiest way to do that? A tool that bridges the gap between various systems—and more.

Here’s how Cirrus Insight can improve higher education processes and productivity, starting with your inbox:

Admissions Offices: Better Prospecting

There are so many ways that admissions offices make use of Cirrus Insight to improve their processes and productivity.

  • The Productivity feature makes it easy to track email opens and other relevant activities within the inbox. Admissions departments use this tool to understand which students are most interested in attending, then use this information to prioritize follow up activities. 
  • The Attachment Tracking feature can also help you understand how prospective students are interacting with university marketing materials you’ve sent via email. Using built-in analytics tools, you can definitively answer the question of what’s working and what may need to be updated or removed from your process altogether.
  • The Enterprise Scheduling tool cuts down on the annoying “What time works for you?” back and forth for any meeting need but it’s especially useful for setting times to chat with potential students and scheduling campus tours.

But perhaps the most-loved Cirrus Insight feature for admissions departments is the ability to automatically log email activity to a CRM, like Salesforce:

More Activity Logging, Less Time

Using Cirrus Insight allows higher education admissions and other departments campuswide to integrate with Salesforce. With this connection, logging email activity happens automatically—there’s no need to manually enter something that just happened in your inbox again in Salesforce!

For higher ed, this can come with tremendous time savings, as staff doesn’t have to directly login to Salesforce often—if ever. Using Cirrus Insight essentially makes a lack of CRM adoption a non-issue, at least in terms of making relevant email activity shareable to all relevant parties.

Individuals responsible for constituents can change, but the information on those students and their activities will remain. In this way, using Cirrus Insight with a CRM helps to increase institutional knowledge from a student’s initial inquiry through graduation and beyond!

Selling University Athletics Tickets & Amplifying Advancement Efforts

You may be wondering what your university’s athletic department and your university’s fundraising efforts have in common? A lot more than you think.

Specifically, both of these teams within your organization are tasked with building and maintaining relationships over time. Team members must follow up with relevant individuals on a regular basis in order to make ticket sales and fundraise. An email or call on it’s own usually isn’t  enough to build a relationship that converts.

To systematize and automate the process of follow ups, many higher education institutions make use of Cirrus Insight’s Flight Plans feature. For athletic departments, this might involve automating email sends related to game schedules and increasing ticket prices. For fundraising and advancement teams, this might involve automating email sends related to specific giving initiatives and reminders to donate.

You can think of Flight Plans as email drip campaigns, initiated by individuals. Using merge tags, it’s easy to send a group of contacts the same follow up messaging with a little personalization. In addition to emails, you can also use Flight Plans to schedule follow up calls and see them at-a-glance as tasks.

Final Thoughts: Improving Higher Ed Processes & Productivity with Cirrus Insight

Two People Working On Laptops

Though Cirrus Insight is often associated with sales professionals at corporate organizations, there are many features that can also be used to achieve productivity improvements by higher education professionals. Cirrus Insight can help your institution bridge the gap between the inbox and your CRM, making it easier to collect and share useful data throughout the student lifecycle.

 

Give it a try for yourself: Cirrus Insight is free to use with a 14-day free trial!

 

*Special thanks to Maddy Osman, Content Strategist at Cirrus Insight, for guest-writing this blog post. Maddy enjoys the fast-paced nature of working with (or for) SaaS companies, like Cirrus Insight — an all-in-one sales productivity platform with world-class Salesforce integration that helps professionals work faster and smarter from the inbox. Cirrus Insight is a Gold sponsor of the 2018 TargetX Summit.