Improving education recruitment

With so many students eager to kickstart, advance, or augment their education, it should be easier for schools to recruit enrollees. But the truth is, education recruitment remains a challenge for many institutions — from schools and universities to recruitment platforms and study abroad consultants. In most cases, the problem is rarely related to what’s being offered. Many organisations have exceptional programs and services suitable for various demographics. The issue lies in their ability to effectively communicate their strengths to potential students or keep interested enrollees engaged in their recruitment efforts. In this guide, we’ll explore the different ways to improve education recruitment.


Enhance your digital presence

In this industry, a website is no longer a repository of information—it’s a primary recruitment tool. Universities and recruiters must optimise their digital presence since students (and their parents!) primarily research prospects online. Your website must be searchable and accessible and should contain all the necessary information that an interested student may need to stay engaged and eventually convert.

Universities and recruitment agencies should also leverage social media. These platforms are a great way to connect with prospective enrollees, especially when user-generated content (UGC) is utilised to exhibit value.

UGC is any piece of content created by people (in this case, students), rather than the institution (i.e. the university). It increases relatability; students who see their peers vouching for programs or universities are more likely to be influenced to take the next steps in recruitment.


Use personalised digital marketing

Aside from an optimised website and active social media accounts, personalised digital marketing is another effective way to capture students online. Young people are highly engaged by targeted marketing efforts. It helps them feel more connected with the school or recruitment agency—as if their personal success is being supported. For maximum effectivity, it’s best to define the student personas you’re targeting to better understand what will appeal to them. It’s also best to take a more human tone in your marketing. Be more like a peer or a guide, rather than a university brand.

There are many personalised digital marketing techniques that you can use. One of the most effective ones is email marketing, especially since students continue to prefer email as their primary communication channel in academic contexts. You can create customised email marketing campaigns and use automated tools to send relevant information to recipients based on their preferences, which can push them further into the funnel and encourage enrolments.

Chatbots are also a great medium as they’re able to quickly provide interested students with answers to frequently asked questions. That said, it’s still important to provide a reachable way to contact the recruiting institution if a more complicated query comes up.


Create community partnerships

With so many options out there, your offers or services might not even be on the radar of most students. In this case, it’s best to seek out connections by partnering with other organisations that these learners already know and trust, be it their high schools, local businesses, mentorship groups or other community organisations. This will increase your visibility and gain positive public relations (PR), which can boost your recruitment efforts.


Hold hybrid recruitment events

Hybrid recruitment events are accessible recruitment solutions that allow students to gain greater insight into their desired institutions or recruitment portals. Not everyone has the time or resources to physically attend tours, seminars or info sessions. Providing online alternatives allows you to accommodate students in different situations. Plus, these transitions to more tech-savvy solutions prove your organisation’s flexibility to keep up with the times and exhibit a high level of being future-proof.

Hybrid recruitment events can come in many forms beyond just a giant Zoom meeting. To engage students, you can set up:

  • a mobile app
  • a 3D working environment
  • group chat rooms
  • moderated Q&A’s.


Practice transparency

Most people want their recruitment to align with what they can expect to experience as actual students later on. And the best way to help them get a clearer vision and establish a positive match is to practice transparency in your strategies. Be clear about scholarship opportunities, post accurate student statistics and be honest about what you can offer.

A dishonest education recruitment strategy may drive away students. It could potentially put the process in a negative light, which could translate to lost leads down the road.


Tap past clients and alumni

A lot of students base their academic-related choices on career prospects. A good way to exhibit how your programs or services can promise a good future is by getting successful clients and alumni to share their stories and vouch for you. They can offer testimonials and demonstrate work opportunities that students can potentially access when they follow through with your recruitment process.

You can hold alumni Q&A events, highlight client success stories, or even provide mentoring opportunities.


Promote university life

People attend university not just to broaden their academic horizons, but to grow holistically. You’ll want to show that you can support their socio-cultural growth. You can do this by promoting life beyond the four walls of a classroom.

Some ways to showcase university life include:

  • creating a day-in-the-life video series featuring existing students
  • having student takeover days on social media
  • promoting a hybrid learning environment
  • highlighting campus facilities
  • maintaining portals for student life.


Offer preparatory programs

Many students feel like they’re not prepared to take further steps toward higher education right away. In these instances, traditional recruitment solutions might get too overwhelming for them. You can, instead, offer these learners preparatory programs, such as La Trobe University’s Tertiary Preparation Program (TPP), the Australian National University’s preparatory and bridging courses or the University of Adelaide’s University Preparatory Program. These can help them better transition into university life. You can provide support and guidance; building this trust with your students may eventually push them towards your recruitment process.


Introduce pathways

You’ll likely come across students who are just below the cut to enter a program or a university. These are still potential enrollees, and you can capture them by introducing pathways or alternative educational routes through your system. Pathways include bridging courses, certificates and diploma programs. They may also include other specialised training that prepares students to handle the demands of tertiary education, especially as they relate to their desired field of study.

Using pathways is a great way to keep students in your recruitment funnel while effectively helping them stay on track to achieve their goals.


Improve education recruitment with GSP

Global Study Partners maintains a large network of universities and recruitment partners. We work together to support students from all over the globe in connecting with their dream universities and programs. Connect with GSP to learn more about improving your education recruitment strategies!

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