Competition To Recruit And Retain Students Drives CRM Market

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Constituent relationship management (CRM) systems are increasingly becoming critical tools for higher education administrators seeking to improve student recruitment quality, student retention, and alumni engagement. The result: the CRM market in higher education is projected to grow in excess of 20% over the next two years, according to a recently released Eduventures report, Constituent Relationship Management Makes Inroads in Higher Education.

Constituent relationship management (CRM) systems are increasingly becoming critical tools for higher education administrators seeking to improve student recruitment quality, student retention, and alumni engagement. The result: the CRM market in higher education is projected to grow in excess of 20% over the next two years, according to a recently released Eduventures report, Constituent Relationship Management Makes Inroads in Higher Education.

According to the report, despite estimated overall budget increases of less than 2% during the last academic year, institutions plan major increases in their CRM spending. The report indicates that an estimated 23% of institutions in the 2004-05 academic year had CRM software in place, with another 22% implementing CRM solutions during 2005-06.

“CRM can be a vital tool for higher education institutions,” said Eduventures’ Senior Analyst, Educational Technology, Catherine Burdt. “Improved ROI is the key driver, whether in the form of increased admission yields or retention rates. CRM systems are seen as critical to long-term growth and profitability, as institutions can capture, track, and analyze behavior among constituents.”

According to Eduventures’ research, 89% of higher education administrators believe that they need to use data to better manage their institutions and to efficiently build relationships with key constituents – from the admissions process through alumni relations. Today, CRM is often first implemented as a niche product by the admissions department in higher education institutions. Eduventures estimates that, in 2005, 95% of CRM revenues in higher education were earned through discrete departmental implementations. Technologies that work alongside CRM systems include e-registration, e-billing, online order entry and payment processing, and access to pre-student services.

CRM’s value to the institution rises considerably when deployments move beyond individual departments to create an institution-wide CRM infrastructure that provides a single view of constituent types. The benefits of institutions’ storing all data in a single database, without the need for integration or re-keying of information, drives efficiencies extending from customer interface to analytics.

“Strong double-digit growth over the next five years provides plenty of incentive for CRM suppliers to continue to invest in the market,” notes Burdt. “To harvest this emerging market, suppliers of CRM solutions should keep looking for ways to deliver more value through attention to the specific needs of individual college departments, while monitoring executive-level strategic initiatives.”

About Eduventures

For more than a decade, Eduventures has been the most trusted name in the education industry for market research, consulting services, and peer networking. Its clients include senior administrators and executives from leading educational institutions and companies serving the K-12, higher education, and corporate learning markets, as well as decision-makers in government agencies and the investment community. For more information, visit http://www.eduventures.com.

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