76% Singapore Students Suggest Universities to Change Digital Strategy Related to Administration

May 27, 201610:15 am441 views

Research into student administration shows universities need to deliver a better digital experience. Unit4, a fast growing leader in enterprise applications for service organizations, released the findings of an independent global research study into the student digital experience around administration.

7 in 10 students across nine markets globally would recommend that their university reviews and changes its digital strategy related to student administration. Around one third of students feel their administration systems do not meet their expectations, making them less likely to recommend the institution.

The research was designed to deliver insight on whether providing a great digital experience to university students gives institutions a competitive advantage. Specifically, the goal was to measure students’ perceptions of their universities’ current digital offer for administration.

The survey was conducted by DJS Research in March and April 2016 among more than 2,000 full time and part time students studying at university level in the US, Canada, United Kingdom, France, Germany, Benelux, Singapore, Australia and New Zealand.

Interestingly, student responses were fairly consistent across undergraduates and postgraduates and from country to country. Students want their universities to do a better job in digitizing student administration and collaboration.

Globally, 44% said that student admin is managed digitally ‘a little or not at all’. In Singapore, 55% felt that admin is so complex that it means they spend less time studying. Almost half of the local students (44%) currently have three or more different log-ins for digital services. 65% of the students also said they would expect administration to be easier to manage, given the fees they pay.

The research also found that a lack of modern, digital solutions for student administration has a negative impact on the student’s perception of the university. Globally, 41% said they would have a better experience if they could interact more digitally.

Over 50% in Singapore would be more likely to recommend their university if digital interaction was better, while more than a quarter (28%) of respondents think less of their university because their systems are poor.

A third of students feel there is too much paperwork and get frustrated with the amount and complexity of admin. Students are currently least satisfied with managing financial aid, course transfers and communicating with faculty advisors. Managing academic progress and coursework, paying tuition and other institutional fees and admissions are also areas for improvement.

“Legacy IT systems are the bane of almost every organization today and education institutions have not been spared either. The market for Student Information Systems (SIS) hasn’t seen real innovation for more than a decade. Most of the existing systems used are on average more than 13 years old,” said Jack van der Velde, Managing Director, Asia Pacific, Unit4.

“The survey findings support the concerns we hear from the industry and our customers. Universities today increasingly need to adapt, embrace the digital age and offer students an experience similar to the device/app experience they now live their lives by.”

When asked what experience they would like to have, 87% of the students surveyed said they would like a single application accessible from any device to manage their entire university life. More than 8 out of 10 would be more satisfied if their university implemented a single digital system to manage all of their administration. Similarly 87% would find it useful to have an app that shows their current progress in their degree, a core component of helping students stay on track.


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