Best CRM for Colleges and Universities: Find your perfect fit

September 14, 2023

15 mins read

Table of Contents

Are you frustrated by missed opportunities and administrative chaos in your college or university?

Are you unhappy with your current tools and struggle to track communication with students?

Do you find it difficult to make informed data-driven decisions because there is no way for you to effectively manage your data?

The pain of losing important prospective students due to a lack of personalization, inconsistent admission process, and inefficient collaboration can be overwhelming.

This is the norm for every college or university who are either managing their operations manually or using a tool that is not meant for higher education.

Now, how do you solve these problems?

It’s simple actually, you just need to follow 2 steps:

  • Find an Education CRM that fulfils your requirements based on the parameters mentioned in this article.

  • Buy that CRM.

But before you go on to double your growth with a CRM system, you need to know exactly;

What is an Education CRM for Colleges and Universities?

Education CRM for Colleges and Universities

An Education CRM is a customer relationship management software specially designed for higher education institutions like colleges and universities.

With a CRM, you can effectively communicate with students over calls and messages, organize all student and prospect information in one central hub, and manage inquiries and applications efficiently. It also provides insightful organization and team performance reports for you to make data-driven decisions.

So in this article, we’ll outline how a CRM solves your problems. We’ll also tell you how to find the best CRM for colleges and universities so you won’t have to read another article on this topic again.

How does a CRM for Colleges and Universities solve all your problems?

Colleges and universities are bustling hubs of activity. You have to juggle countless operations, manage a vast student body, and handle finances- all this on a day-to-day basis.

Managing all these operations simultaneously can be exhausting and your admin staff tends to make mistakes because of this, especially without a proper tool. But with a CRM for school, you can bid farewell to all your worries.

A CRM is like a personal assistant that does all your work- interacts with all stakeholders, streamlines all processes be they admission-related or otherwise, and identifies loopholes for you to take corrective actions.

Let’s see how a CRM solves your most daunting problems:

Problem: Ineffective Data Management:

Data management problems for universities and colleges

Your data is scattered across various systems or stored using outdated methods like paper records or Excel spreadsheets. This approach often causes more problems than it solves.

Managing and accessing student, staff, and teacher records is a headache- you might not find the right record at the right time, your data can be lost, and making data-driven decisions becomes an absolute nightmare.

These data management problems can be effectively solved with a CRM. Let’s see how:

Solution:

1. Centralized Data Hub:

In a CRM, all data is neatly organized in one accessible place. Type a student’s name, and you get all their information- from contact and payment details to attendance records and their entire interaction history. So you won’t have to worry about your data being lost or inaccurate.

Also, because of centralized data, you can easily collaborate between multiple departments at once- you can transfer the handling of a prospect to the after-admission support team after enrollment, decide who can access important performance data, direct the roles and responsibilities of your admin staff, and a lot more!

In short, better collaboration, complete access, and no more missed opportunities.

2. Integration with Multiple Platforms:

You are getting inquiries from your university’s website, social media, or any other platform? Or you’re hopping between multiple platforms to confirm payments received?

Worry not. You can integrate with multiple platforms like payment gateways, your website, social media, Google Sheets, etc.- to access and manage important data from one place at the click of your fingers.

The result? Smooth operations, no frantic search for data, no app hopping, and a better reputation to attract more parents.

Problem: Communication Blackhole

Communication blackhole- problems of communication in colleges and universities

You want to send messages about academic curriculums to students, send updates regarding timetables and fees, communicate with prospective students via calls and messages throughout the enrollment process, and a million other things.

And in this process, you make a lot of mistakes:

  • You forget to follow up on time.

  • You might send the wrong message to the wrong student.

  • You’re unable to solve student queries efficiently.

  • And personalization often takes a backseat.

Because of this communication gap, interested candidates might lose interest, and existing ones would bad mouth your institution.

Getting a good CRM platform is the only way to solve these issues. Let’s see how:

Solution:

1. Streamlined Communication

You made a call but the student’s not receiving it? Worried that you’ll forget to call the student afterwards?

No worries, you can simply schedule a follow-up reminder to call later and when the time comes, you get a notification to follow up. This way you can ensure that no students are missed.

Is the student still not picking up the follow-up call after multiple attempts? You can directly send a message on WhatsApp or email. So even if he doesn’t pick up the call, the message is delivered, and your work is done, which is an absolute win.

In short, you can call, send a WhatsApp message or email, and schedule a follow-up call reminder- all from one single place.

No missed interactions, no more confusion, just streamlined communication.

2. Personalized Attention:

Suppose you’re interacting with a prospective student but you don’t have a way to know what conversation you had with him the last time you talked.

To figure that out, you might have to scramble the messages you sent him previously, check call recordings if available, check his stage in the admission process, or ask him directly. This is just way too hectic.

Imagine being the student in this case, he’ll not feel valued and definitely not enroll.

All these problems vanish when you have a way to track interactions. With a CRM, you know exactly where a student is in the admission process.

And because of this, you can pick up right from where you left off. No more issues remembering about your last conversation with the student.

You can personalize your calls, messages, and emails to solve his problems and get that enrollment done and dusted with.

3. Send Bulk Messages:

When you run a higher education institution, you need to constantly message prospective students, existing students, academic staff, parents, etc. Many of these interactions are repetitive like sending fee reminders, updates regarding a conference, detailing the admission process to prospective students, connecting with alumni, etc.

Now sending the same message to a lot of people individually can be hectic and is prone to mistakes. You might end up sending a fee reminder to the academic staff instead of sending it to a student.

With a CRM, you don’t have to worry about such embarrassment. You can practically send bulk messages to a huge but selected group at the click of a finger. You won’t have to worry about typing the same messages again and again to send to multiple people.

And yes, those bulk messages do not lack personalization, if that’s what you’re worrying about. The CRM automatically fetches the name while sending the message, making the recipient of the message feel valued.

Also, the message doesn’t feel like it’s promotional marketing.

Everyone who’s supposed to get a message gets one, no time is wasted in sending the message individually, and the manual effort gets completely eliminated.

Admin staff after streamlining admission process and communicating effectively with a CRM- Meme

Problem: Stunted Growth

How do you check if your admin staff is doing their job properly? Are they answering queries or are they slacking off? Are you able to track important metrics like conversion rate, retention rate, financial aid received and given, and student-to-faculty ratio?

Without having a record of these metrics, you won’t know what’s working, and what’s not. And you won’t be able to make the necessary changes that are needed to grow. It’s like driving without a roadmap- you know where you want to go, but have no idea if you’re actually on the right track.

Solution:

When you have a customizable CRM by your side, you can generate custom reports on admin team performance and track those important performance and health metrics:

Call Reports:

Call reports tell you about the calling status of your admin team- the number of calls made, time duration of the calls, quality of interactions, etc. It helps you figure out if your admin staff are actually doing their job properly or if they are just slacking off.

Marketing Campaign Reports:

Which source of lead gets you the most deals? Which one has the most relevant prospects? Does the promotional content on your website need improvement?

To get the answer to these questions, you can use a CRM to generate the efficiency of your marketing campaigns.

You can find out the reasons for stagnation or downfall, make changes, and grow.

A CRM gives you clear-cut directions of what you need to do to expand your college or university.

What factors to consider when choosing the best CRM for Higher Education?

By now, you should be clear about 2 things:

  • You need a CRM to solve your problems
  • And it needs to have a specific set of features

So, while wandering off to search for the perfect CRM for your institution, you need to keep in mind the following 6 factors:

How to find the best CRM for colleges and universities

Easy to Use:

Look for a CRM with a clean and intuitive interface so that even non-tech-savvy admin staff can get a hold of it quickly and start working.

If you get a complex CRM, your team will find it difficult to adapt to and will probably not use it properly.

You can often assess usability by requesting a demo or free trial to see how it feels to use.

Key Features:

It’s easy to be excited by a CRM’s extensive feature list. But you need to focus on features that directly benefit your college or university, like data management, communication tracking, follow-up, integrations, and reporting.

Skip the extras that you won’t use, they’ll just add to your cost and you’ll probably never use them anyway.

Most CRM providers list their features on their websites, so compare them to your requirements to make a decision.

Mobile Ready:

Nowadays, everyone is always on the go. Having a mobile CRM for colleges and universities is like having your office in your pocket.

Imagine being at a conference in a different city or just relaxing at home – you can still handle everything related to your admissions, student records, and alumni relations, all from your phone.

You can even make important decisions by tracking metrics about how your institution and admin team are performing.

To check if a CRM has a good mobile application, you can just download it, test it yourself, or read reviews on Google and Play Store.

Value-Based Pricing:

Whether you’re buying a CRM for college or a CRM for education consultancy or coaching, choose a CRM based on the value it brings and not on the price. While choosing a lower-cost CRM may appear to be a cost-saving move, it’s essential to assess whether it provides the necessary features and support you require.

On the flip side, investing in a high-priced CRM loaded with features you won’t actually use can be a waste of resources.

It’s essential to consider your budget, but the primary focus should be on the value and return on investment that the CRM can deliver.

Pro tip: Always make sure to check for any hidden charges associated with the CRM.

Customization Options:

Every higher education institution has a unique workflow and admission process. Heck, even the admission process of two different courses within the same university could be different.

Therefore, it’s crucial that the CRM you choose can be customized to reflect your specific processes and workflows.

A customizable CRM fits right into how your team works every day, i.e., your team won’t have to adjust according to the CRM.

And having a CRM that can change as your institution expands is really a valuable asset.

Responsive Customer Support:

Customer support is the deciding factor in whether a CRM is good or bad. It can have all the features you need, and be cost-effective, customizable, and easy to use. But if its customer support is unresponsive, the CRM itself is of no value to your organization.

Responsive support means you can stay on track, and deal with problems fast.

To check a CRM’s customer support, see what options they offer for getting help – like emails, live chat, chatbots, calls, etc.

Also, track their customer support reputation on platforms like Google Reviews, Tech Jockey, Trust Radius, Software Advice, etc.

Best CRM for Colleges and Universities in 2024

So, you’re ready to make the leap and invest in a CRM for higher education. But even when you know how to choose one, it’s too time-consuming to see which one suits you best.

Don’t worry, Telecrm’s Education CRM got you covered.

Education CRM by Telecrm:

Telecrm is India’s top mobile and WhatsApp-based Telecalling CRM. It initially began as just a sim-based Telecalling software for small and medium businesses in India. But it’s so much more than that now.

With fantastic sales automation features like auto-dialer, smart follow-ups, call recording, and easy integration with multiple tools, it’s a user-friendly CRM for educational institutions– be it a college, a university, a school, or even an educational consultancy and coaching institute.

Let’s see how Telecrm fits all the boxes when it comes to being one of the best Education CRMs for colleges and universities in the market:

Quick Setup:

Adapting to a CRM must be quick and effortless because your educational operations can’t afford to be halted, even for a day.

With Telecrm. you can start using it right away– it’s as simple as plug-and-play! Setting up your workspace and getting your entire team on board takes less than 24 hours. Pick a Sunday and set your whole team up 🙂

The best part is that you and your team don’t need any technical knowledge. If your admin staff is able to use WhatsApp and phone to interact with students- they’ll be able to use Telecrm.

Prompt Customer Support:

When you buy CRM software, your team might have questions about how to customize it, make calls, or send messages, etc.

Telecrm makes sure that every question is answered quickly so no one on your team is left wondering.

TeleCRM's support channels

Your team gets trained on how to use Telecrm through Zoom meetings and phone support. You also have access to a dedicated WhatsApp group that’s available as long as you’re subscribed. You and your team can directly ask and get quick resolutions of your queries. But why a WhatsApp group, why not email?

Well, because,

  • Your team can always check past chats for reference and find answers to common questions.

  • You don’t have to handle everything yourself – your team can ask for help independently.

  • Being part of the group helps you stay updated on your team’s challenges and our support team’s performance.

Apart from WhatsApp and phone support, you can also watch custom video tutorials, read helpful blog articles, and chat live on Telecrm’s website.

Efficient Data Management:

Handling extensive data using Excel spreadsheets and physical documents often leads to errors such as sending the wrong message to potential clients, maintaining inaccurate records, and making uninformed choices.

With Telecrm, those worries are a thing of the past!

Telecrm automatically collects leads from various sources, including Facebook, your website, WhatsApp, Excel sheets, and more. All this information is neatly organized in one central location, eliminating the need to juggle multiple apps to access this.

Education CRM integrations integrations

You can effortlessly monitor crucial metrics, assess the performance of marketing campaigns, refine engagement strategies, and make well-informed decisions.

Say goodbye to the hassle of switching between applications for essential data-driven choices, as Telecrm puts everything you need right at your fingertips.

Customizable Admission Process:

Different universities may have varying admission stages, with some having 6 and others 5. You may also use specific terms in your enrollment procedures that are unique to your college or university.

Having a CRM that can’t adjust to your way of doing things can be a problem. It can make it hard for your team to use it, and you might even have to change your processes to fit the CRM.

But with Telecrm, you can make it work your way. Whether you have 6, 7, or even 10 stages, you can set it up however you like. Telecrm can also use the words and terms that make sense for your institution.

Customizable Admission Process in TeleCRM.

And here’s the best part: Telecrm is flexible. If your college or university expands and you have to add more courses, i.e., more processes, with Telecrm, you can add as many processes as you want to.

Telesales Management:

Imagine your team manually dialing phone numbers, updating Excel sheets, and sending WhatsApp messages and emails every time they want to interact with ONE prospective student.

It’s time-consuming, inconvenient, and reduces your efficiency significantly.

Telecrm changes all that. It lets you handle all your telesales needs from one place. You can call, set reminders for calls, take notes, record calls, and send WhatsApp messages, and emails, all from one spot.

TeleSales management with TeleCRM

Plus, transferring prospects between departments becomes a breeze. For example, if you need to send the details of a newly enrolled student to the admission support team for further procedures, it’s as easy as clicking a button.

Reporting and Team Management:

Ever wonder if your admin team is making enough calls, keeping up with follow-ups, and solving inquiries? Without data on these metrics, it’s hard to know who’s working and who might need a little push.

That’s where Telecrm comes in. It not only helps with enrollment but also keeps a close eye on your team’s work. It shows you everything your team does, like calls made, messages sent, and successful enrollments, so you always know what’s going on.

You can also decide who does what in the CRM, assign tasks, and control who sees and edits reports. It’s all in one place for easy and quick management.

WhatsApp Marketing:

Your team sends lots of messages to prospective students daily. Sometimes they might forget or send the wrong message. That could cost you a potential enrollment or enraged students.

But with Telecrm, you’re in control. You can schedule reminders to send messages at the right times to the right people. You complete your tasks on time and the students get what they need.

WhatsApp Marketing- TeleCRM

But that’s not all! You can even send messages to multiple students, staff, and prospective students- all at once. Whether it’s announcements, updates, or promotions, Telecrm makes it easy to connect with many students at once. It’s messaging made easy and effective!

Automation Features:

Doing the same tasks over and over is a drag. Also, doing these repetitive tasks means that you give up time that could have been used to do more important tasks like managing the campus, designing curriculums, handling finances, and actually enrolling students.

Telecrm’s automation takes those routine tasks off your hands. It handles routine chores such as setting follow-up reminders, automatically updating prospect statuses, and sending personalized bulk messages to important prospects. This leaves you free to focus on what you do best—enrolling as many students as possible.

Telecrm offers chatbot automation that operates 24/7, providing support even when you and your team are unavailable. The chatbot serves as the initial point of contact for prospective students, delivering instant responses and allowing you to understand their needs better for more targeted outreach.

TeleCRM's automation chatbot

Data Security:

Data security is a top priority for educational institutions, and rightfully so. Your data is valuable, and you’re aware of the potential consequences if it ends up in the wrong hands. It’s essential to ensure that access to critical information is restricted to your most trusted team members.

Telecrm grants you full control over who can access your information. A team member can either be an admin, a caller, or a manager. The hierarchical order of access is like this:

  • An admin will have access to the complete workspace. (They can do whatever they want).
  • A manager can see the reports and leads of assigned members. (They can do a caller’s job as well).
  • A caller can only call on the leads assigned to him/her.

This means your data remains secure and accessible only to those you trust.

Data Security with TeleCRM

Furthermore, Telecrm operates on cloud-based servers, guaranteeing that no third party will ever gain access to your data.

Simple Pricing:

Choosing a CRM can be confusing. Most CRMs have various plans with different features. So, you’ll likely start by shortlisting potential higher education CRMs, then comparing their pricing plans based on the features they offer, and finally making a decision.

But Telecrm simplifies this process. It offers a single, all-inclusive plan that covers every feature and customization, all at an affordable price.

Team member permission dashboard in telecrm: Education crm

You only need to decide between two commitment options: an annual plan or a quarterly plan. Both plans offer the same features; it’s up to you whether you prefer a longer-term commitment or a shorter one.

You reading about TeleCRM: relevant features, easy to use, amazing customer support, cost effective- Meme

Conclusion:

In this article, we’ve covered:

  • What an Education CRM is.

  • Why it matters for your higher education institution.

  • How to find the Best CRM for your college or university.

In short, you now have the tools to take your institution’s expansion to the next level. You need to act and you need to act now!

Research the market, compare different CRMs to see if they fit your needs, and then decide on a CRM for colleges and universities that’s cost-effective, easy to use, has amazing customer support, with the features and customizations you need.

Or, you can make it easier on yourself and consider Telecrm. It offers a comprehensive list of customizations, strong customer support, a mobile app for Android and iOS, and handles all the essential CRM tasks.

In short, it has all the features that a higher education institution needs in a CRM- all at an unbeatable price.

So, what are you waiting for, upgrade your CRM today!

Article Author

Zaid is a content writer and a marketing executive at Telecrm with a specialization in writing technical blogs, website landing pages, and on-page SEO. He's an MBA student and a national-level debater having represented Aligarh Muslim University at various competitions.