If your university isn’t managing data processes online yet, you need to get on the bandwagon. Not only are most of your students and alumni online, but using an online data management tool (like a form builder) can save hours of time for your team.

Higher education institutions across the nation use Formstack — a versatile online form solution — to engage with prospective students and alumni and grow campus enrollment. Here are a few reasons your university should join these institutions and embrace an online data management platform:

Streamline workflows and data systems

When you work in higher education, you have a lot on your plate. There are donations to process, new students to get on campus, applications to review, and more. A form solution eliminates stress by automating these processes for you. With online forms like donation forms, university enrollment forms, and student feedback forms, you can collect vital information and route submitted form data to web apps like your CRM, email marketing platform, analytics platforms, and payment processors.

You can also streamline form approvals for additional process automation. Formstack offers an Approvals feature that helps you set up approval systems for different processes. For example, if you’re using a registration form to collect applications online, you can send completed applications to specific approver emails for their review. A comment system lets approvers submit reasons for accepting or rejecting an application to ensure your approval process runs smoothly.

Additionally, you can organize different workflows to create a more efficient system for managing student and alumni data. Formstack’s Workflows add-on allows multiple people at your university to review, edit, and complete a single form. You can assign each section of your workflow form to a different person, and once each fills out his or her portion, all data will be combined into a single submission. This centralized, automated workflow system is great for managing student enrollment, campus event planning, and more.

Reach more students and boost campus enrollment

Streamlining your data processes is all well and good, but it won’t be every effective if you’re not getting good data in the first place. If you’re often pressured to get high registration rates for campus events or to bring in large numbers of new students, you need to use optimized online forms to achieve your goals. Encourage more sign-ups by making it easy for prospects and students to fill out your forms. Add Social Autofill to your applications and event registrations so students can autofill form fields with information from their social media profiles.

To streamline your online forms further, use insights from your analytics platforms to identify problem areas. With Formstack, you can use Field Bottlenecks to pinpoint which form fields are causing users to abandon a form and not click Submit. And don’t forget to use mobile-friendly forms to reach people where they spend most of their time—on their mobile devices.

Engage with more alumni and increase donations

Last but not least, ensure students stay connected after graduation with email newsletter sign-ups, surveys, and event registrations. Sending a confirmation email as soon as a form is submitted creates a personalized experience for your alumni. And connecting your forms to an email marketing platform will help you keep alumni engaged through ongoing communication.

Embed donation forms and event registration forms on your website and in your emails to encourage more participation. Remove barriers to completion by hiding irrelevant information with form logic and integrating your forms with a payment gateway for effortless payment processing. And put alumni at ease by including a security stamp on your form to let them know their information is protected.

The key to success

Streamlining your processes with an online data management solution like Formstack can go a long way in making your team more organized and efficient—and that, of course, breeds success.

About the Author

Ashley Walsh has worked in multiple areas of the B2B marketing sector and is currently the vice president of marketing for Formstack, an online form building solution based in Indianapolis.