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Improving Student Services: Queuing Systems for Higher Education

By Brandon Munson Subscribe to RSS | June 14th 2012 | Views:

With an ever increasing number of students, and a more competitive pool of higher education institutions trying to attract those students, it's the higher education institutes that work to improve their student services that will find more success.

In today's higher education marketplace, many colleges are investing huge amounts of money into complete redesigns of their recruitment and registration systems in order to improve those student services. However, huge revamps (requiring thousands of dollars in specialized equipment and systems) aren't necessarily the best answer.

Improving student services can be as simple as utilizing the tools and technology those students already has. One way to accomplish this is with a virtual queuing system for higher education. Cloud solutions such Student Q uses SMS test messaging to alert students when it’s their turn in line, student’s no longer have to be herded like cattle to register for classes or see financial aide services.

Higher Education Students Today

To start, let's look at some quick facts about students today.

A recent study found that 99.8% of college students today have cell phones. Furthermore, According to Michael Hanley, director of Ball State's Institute for Mobile Media Research, 97 percent of the students he surveyed used text messaging as their main form of communication.

As a college, be it for registration purposes or for communicating with current students for other purposes, taking advantage of this simple fact can vastly improve student services without a huge cash outlay for expensive capital redesign projects around student flow.

Queuing Systems For Higher Education

SMS queuing system will allow student service professionals a simple way to communicate with students without large lineups or frustrated students or staff. Rather than sitting and waiting in line, a queuing system allows for instant messaging to students when it's time for the student to meet with a faculty member. This frees up more time for staff and for the students themselves. It's like having virtual lineups where each student has their turn in queue, and where they don't actually have to stand in line.

When compared to redesigning a whole department (such as your registration office) SMS queuing systems are inexpensive. More than that, the queue management system utilizes a students' preferred method of communication. The virtual line in queue allows for staff to simply text a student when it's time for them to meet with a registrar, teacher, counsellor, etc.

The system works by allowing staff to put the student into a virtual queue. When a staff member, such as a registration professional, is free they simply click a button to text the next student in the queue. This lets the student know that it's their turn and solves issues with large lineup and long wait times. There by improving student services without the need for complex (expensive) equipment.

Improved Student Services

To go further, let's use one example. A queue management system could be used for everything from registration to organizing extra-curricular activities. But, for one second, just imagine a registration line without an actual lineup. Each student takes his/her turn in queue and meets with a registration advisor in sequence.

The system itself is interactive. Advisors at the college can manage the queue, and students can interact with the queue management system to: request more time, view their spot in line, and more. With a system like this the entire registration process becomes cheaper for the college and more effective at the same time. It also results in happier students who didn't spend 4 or 5 hours waiting in line.

Brandon Munson - About Author:
SMS queue management system such as is flexible enough to be utilized in many areas of communicating with and retaining students. In short – it is one of the most cost effective ways to improve student services in higher education.

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