Higher Ed eCommerce Gurus on How to Make Students and Staff Happy
I love how honestly and openly schools tell each other what works and what doesn’t. Spalding University and Indiana Wesleyan University recently chatted about how they make students and staff happy. I wish you could have joined us for this eCommerce discussion for clients of Colleague® by Ellucian
But you don’t have to miss out on the best quotes. Here are some of our handpicked highlights.
Service fees save money while satisfying students
1. “We had a PR concern about charging a service fee. But students and parents did not push back when we introduced a fee to pay with debit or credit card. We mitigated upsetting them by offering eCheck for free. Now we save $500,000 per year and do not unfairly raise tuition for all students due to the small segment that pay with cards.” – Zach Whitesel, Director at Indiana Wesleyan University
2. “We switched to charging a service fee for card payments. I thought this would lead to complaints from students. We did have a few students call, but we told them they could still pay with eCheck for free and that satisfied them.” - Sarah West, Bursar at Spalding University
Real-time payments interface enabled student self-service and reduced costs
3. “Selecting a strategic partner of Colleague by Ellucian makes a big difference. We tried in the past to integrate a vendor that was not a strategic partner. This required so much IT time that we actually scrapped the software.” – Zach
4. “Students expect to do everything instantly, including see their payments post. We addressed student concerns by integrating our payment plan in real-time. Now we get a lot less questions from students about when payments will post.” – Zach
5. “Launching real-time Colleague integration for payment plan and campus payments reduced our staff count. Because of the efficiencies gained we saved the salary of one full time employee through natural attrition.” – Zach
6. “Before we were doing everything manually. The woman who was previously keying these payments wanted to decrease her hours in preparation for retirement. But she did not want to leave the university strained. Now that we have real-time payments and payment plan integration, she is now only working 3 days a week.” – Sarah
These comments align with what I hear as well from colleges and universities. A survey of 78 of our higher ed clients reported that after upgrading their eCommerce system, they saved 19% on related staff time. Schools incorporate all of these results into their business cases for upgrading their eCommerce systems.
The biggest surprise from our discussion was that institutions create these fact-based business cases in only 40 minutes. Schools forecast the revenue and cost savings based on the results similar colleges and universities achieved. These business analytics make it easier to make smart decisions.
Want to see more? Watch the replay of our discussion.
Related Blog Posts
How Italian Banks and Processors Can Capitalize on Digital Transformation
The European payments landscape is in an era of significant change thanks to PSD2 and other macro factors, but there is more than one way to deliver real-time and open payments to meet PSD2 requirements and its technical standards. Banks and processors must manage this alongside their own set of domestic challenges and opportunities.
SWIFT gpi: Leveraging Cross-Border Payments for the Real-Time World
SWIFT gpi represents the evolution of business done over the SWIFT network, bringing correspondent banking into the digital era.
I’ve covered this topic before, but with gpi now reaching the two-year milestone, it’s a good chance to reassess the progress that has been made – and what is needed to drive further adoption.
Instant Payments in Italy – And Beyond: Lessons from Il Salone dei Pagamenti
ACI was invited back to Il Salone dei Pagamenti – Italy’s premier payments event organized by the Italian Banking Association (ABI) – to participate in a panel, “SEPA Inst – the Future.” As expected, the session was packed with stats and advice for a more efficient roll out of instant payments – in Italy and beyond.
Dedicated Followers of Fintech: Why Transaction Banking Never Goes Out of Fashion
Taking part in a panel at a recent corporate treasury conference, I was introduced as a ‘consumer payments expert’ – not an obvious qualification for sharing stage-time with serious corporate liquidity and cash management folk, but as the talk track was on mobile wallets and Open Banking, I had some reasonably safe and relevant content on which to fall back.
Sibos Preview: The Five Trends Transforming Real-Time Payments
Real-time is now a reality, with more than 30 schemes live around the world. And real-time is in the spotlight as banks and financial service providers make their way to Sydney for Sibos 2018. What better time to look ahead at the key trends that are going to shape the ongoing development of real-time payments.
API Management: The Reason Digital Open Banking Can Fly
When it comes to thinking about the different roles that an API Manager can play for an organization, I personally think that an airport provides the perfect analogy. The customer is the passenger, the third-party organizations using a bank’s APIs are the airlines and the airport itself is the bank. I also think this analogy helps to visualize the variety of API management capabilities – including the role of an API gateway.
Can Corporate Banking be as Easy as Ordering Pizza?
ACI recently hosted Greenwich Associates on a webinar to discuss corporate banking. While not a topic that would usually make attendees salivate, the discussion turned toward ordering pizza (maybe, because it was close to lunchtime) and Greenwich highlighted how corporate banking should be as easy as ordering pizza.
Modernizing Cross-Border Transfers with SWIFT gpi
The customer experience for domestic payments – retail and corporate – has recently undergone a complete transformation. There’s still plenty more that could be achieved, but the advent of real-time payments in combination with open APIs has seen the launch of Request for Payment services and direct eCommerce instant payments in the UK and Europe. And it’s not just the PSD2 push in Europe that’s driving change – in the U.S., Zelle is moving beyond standalone P2P payments to become an integrated part of the retail banking app experience, as well as being included in new kinds of corporate disbursements.
Instant + Open Payments = A Winning Combination
I recently joined a panel discussion at EBAday 2018, alongside representatives from across the payments ecosystem, and the clear consensus was that real-time payments will be the new normal. This was evidenced by some of the interactive polls carried out.
Maintain Vs. Invest: What the Digital Era Ushers in for Banks
Taking place this week in Brussels, the European Credit Research Institute (ECRI) will host a high-level debate on how policymakers can build on the process of digitalisation of banks to raise competitiveness in light of increased competition from fintech start-ups and tech giants.