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How does lifelong student engagement factor into higher education performance?

How lifelong student engagement factors into higher education performance.​


Adopting a holistic approach to data that integrates information about students and maximizes digital tools and technologies will enhance higher education performance by attracting more prospects, creating a positive experience to better retain current students, and building lifelong connections with those students as they become alumni and donors.

Building connections with students to last a lifetime will not happen overnight. But by setting the right goals for your institution, identifying the right higher education technologies to improve student services and by fine-tuning your approach based on results, your university will be well positioned to improve higher education performance in the digital age and deliver public service for the future.


Students themselves have embraced the power of digital. Potential students are using digital to inform their decisions about education. Nine in 10 enrolled students have used the Internet to research higher education institutions, and Google’s internal data indicates that by 2014, 40 percent of education search queries will happen on mobile devices.

Students are embracing digital to learn. One study shows that 50 percent of college presidents expect that within 10 years, a majority of students will be taking at least some of their classes online. Students are staying connected with their alma maters through LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook.


Higher education performance is not just about attracting large numbers of students earlier in their decision-making process; it is also about attracting the right type of potential students for your institution. Analytics can help you target the right prospects through the right channels at the right time.

After instituting recruitment analytics, one university saw a double-digit increase in enrollment, increased the quality of its inquiry and applicant pools, and predicted which students would enroll.1 Insight-driven recruiting can also help admissions departments understand which marketing tactics are successful, and which should be replaced to boost higher education performance.

Seamless student services are another inroad to student engagement. By creating a single, convenient point of service access for students through higher education technology initiatives, universities can reduce the number of classes students miss while trying to access services, and at the same time, decrease effort for students and staff.


It’s time to raise the bar beyond happy hours to engage your alumni community. Social events to spark school spirit are no longer enough to improve higher education performance. Leading institutions are offering career support, lifelong learning opportunities and digital means to customize their engagement and interactions with alumni.

Sophisticated relationship management and analytic tools can help your institution identify potential donors and develop them into regular high-value supporters. You can also evaluate the effectiveness of your alumni engagement activities and track ongoing interactions with alumni. After instituting donor analytics, the University of South Dakota secured $17 million of giving in the first 12 months of using its data, 13.3 percent more than expected.

Alumni are more willing to support the school when the school continually offers value throughout their lives. Universities seeing the highest enrollment growth tend to have strong endowments, evidence that engaged alumni are part of a virtuous recruiting circle that contributes to higher education performance.

Noel-Levits case study;