Page 18 - Campus Technology, May/June 2019
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IT Management
that we need to investigate.”
The same type of setup is helping Briggs
respond to deans and others who want to understand use of the new LMS among instruc- tors, by department or college.
Data Usage in a Smaller School
While Clemson has been able to plow heavy- duty expertise and tools into its use of data ana- lytics, not all schools are big enough to have the same motherlode of resources. That doesn’t mean they can’t take advantage of the data they have on hand to improve operations too.
At The King’s College (NY), a 520-student institution in New York City, Stephanie Brews- ter, associate director of admissions and new student financial services (and a graduate of the school), has found numerous places where her department relied too often on manual processes that belied easy scaling.
As one example, the office used a tedious combination of Outlook and mail merge to send communications to prospective students. Financial aid, which was awarded by the admis- sions team, was managed in an Excel spread- sheet. It had “very complicated formulas in there,” said Brewster, “but it created all kinds of other problems because it could never be quite as sophisticated as we wanted.”
Two things happened to set King’s on its path to modernization. The first was adoption of Salesforce for constituent relationship manage- ment. The use of Salesforce Marketing Cloud has enabled admissions to set up “integrated automated journeys” that eliminate the manual e-mailing steps that were so painful in the past, said Brewster. Its use also allows her to set up and send targeted messages by each student type or cohort, which “allows us to communi- cate much better to our students without taking a lot of time from a staff member.”
The second driver was the creation of a tech- nology governance committee where users from the different departments come together to make campuswide IT decisions, including those
involving data. One ongoing project undertaken by that committee is mapping out the data jour- ney followed by students from the moment they first hear about the college during the admis- sions process all the way to alumni giving. The committee has also developed metrics by which to rate new data projects, to “prioritize the ones that are most important to us.”
But Salesforce in itself isn’t the sole tool helping King’s find success with its data work. The institution also needed something that would simplify integration of information main- tained by the college’s multiple systems. A big- gie: pulling student data from the school’s cur- rent student information system — CAMS from Unit4 (previously, Three Rivers) — into Sales- force.
Brewster turned to Jitterbit to expedite the Salesforce integration work, which allows her to set up connections between the two applica- tions. Previously, she recalled, a job of getting the student data out of Marketing Cloud and moving it into the SIS “took hundreds of hours.” Now it takes “less than five minutes.”
Additionally, with the use of SQL scripts she wrote herself, Brewster has facilitated a two- way information trade between CAMS and Salesforce. “I didn’t want this to just be a one- way connection,” she insisted. “It’s no fun when a student has already talked to someone in admissions about something but that data didn’t get passed into the SIS, so that when they go talk to financial services, they’re looking at something completely different, which means they have to retell their story. It causes a lot of frustration. We want to be as responsive as pos- sible to [student] needs and give them the best experience we can.”
An advantage of automating such connections is that it builds in “redundancies,” Brewster pointed out. “Instead of one person having to be very technical to understand how to do a process, now Jitterbit can do the process.”
There have been bumps along the way. Fre- quently, the various applications that Brewster

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