From Intuition to Information: Using Big Data and Predictive Analytics to Support Enrollment Management

August 6, 2019

Bayh Sullivan, Director of Enrollment Management, The Ellis School, PA, and Andy Hannah, CEO, Othot, PA “Hey! How are the numbers looking?” “Are you feeling good about next year?” “What are our numbers going to be?” In enrollment management and admission offices, we are used to fielding these questions from our heads of school, board members, fellow administrators, faculty, and even prospective parents. But, are these questions really the right ones to ask of ourselves, our teams, and our schools? Figuring out the right questions to ask about your enrollment process is essential to successfully meet your goals. Cost impacts enrollment, doesn’t it? What about demographics? Mission and values? Effective marketing? Why do the families who choose our schools make the decisions that they do? What factors are most influential? Are they the same factors that we think are the most important? Do our past outcomes predict our future? How can we tell? By using big data, as well as your school’s data, you can uncover the right questions to ask and subsequently, the answers to your most essential questions: How likely are best-fit students to enroll in my school, and what can I do to predict and influence the outcomes of their decision making?

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