Five Barriers To Yield Improvement
Time is the only non-renewable resource in a recruitment cycle
When an admissions counselor makes the wrong decision on how to spend their time, your most precious resource to improve yield is gone.
This underscores the biggest challenge to improving yield: time. Time is the only non-renewable resource available to an admissions leader. You can always buy more names, send more emails, do a few more visits, and even appeal for more budget. But once a day in the recruiting cycle is gone, you can never get it back.
Every year, Directors, Deans, and Vice Presidents develop a strategy for the next recruiting cycle. After exhaustive research and multi-day planning sessions, they emerge with a strategy that has the best chance of meeting their enrollment goals. However, at the start of the recruitment cycle, the range of possible outcomes is incredibly wide. If everything breaks their way, it’s a record-setting class. If everything breaks against them, it’s a disappointing year or worse.
Each day of the recruiting cycle, the range of potential outcomes shrinks. Make the right decisions in September and the bottom of the range lifts. Lose ground on your travel plan due to plane delays, and the top of the range comes down.
Yesterday, today, tomorrow, and every other day this year – your admissions counselors come to work and make a series of micro-decisions that each play a small role in your final results. Individually, each micro-decision is minor, but add them together, and admissions counselors can ensure your strategy achieves its optimal result.
Unfortunately, there are five mistakes that admissions counselors are making right now.
- They don’t know who to spend their time on today, and you can’t tell them.
- They are drawn towards comfortable conversations with students and avoid awkward ones.
- They extrapolate from anecdotes as if it is data.
- They are too focused on the significant milestones towards enrollment.
- They undervalue the importance of the gift of time.
You can’t sustainably improve your yield without improving your team.
Right now, the best thing an admissions leader can do to maximize the outcome of your fall strategies is to make strides in these five areas. They will pay off in incremental but cumulative yield benefits that will last for years.