Management expert discusses why the future for college campuses is on-demand, not just online

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IT experts are calling it a super storm of forces that’s changing the way a campus ecosystem operates.

First, the very foundation of student expectations is changing, with requirements for education delivery models that are more flexible and accessible than those of generations past.

Second, the higher-ed market—thanks to the economy and possibilities available via technology—is reshaping itself under new requirements for competition, delivery, funding, and outcomes.

And it’s this super storm, say experts, that’s creating the need for new business processes and strategies to better compete and retain students.

Say hello to the On Demand Model, which is based on the premise that institutions are going to require new technologies that provide “innovative capabilities for engagement and delivery” thanks to the super storm, explains Campus Management, a provider of enterprise software products and services for educational institutions and coiner of the super storm and On Demand Model phrases.

“This is going beyond online functionality,” said Connor Gray, chief strategy officer for Campus Management and a recent presenter at EDUCAUSE. “The On Demand Model is a much broader concept, including dynamic models of engagement and delivery. Engagement includes how to deliver the right message to the right person via the right channel. Delivery includes knowing the right place and right time; not just which courses delivered how, but access to student counselors, financial aid options, community groups, career and alumni services, and many others for helping with student retention and completion.”

“The On Demand Model is an ecosystem to support fully customized and personalized students needs,” he continued.

What also makes this model unique from other vendor-branded messaging is that it’s not focused on the technology first.

“This is about a business strategy that aligns with technology strategy—not the other way around,” emphasized Gray. “It’s about enabling a business model first. For example, a lot of people and tech companies are making a big deal out of a type of solution, say Software-as-a-Service; but that’s not what’s important! It’s really about how an institution implements a business strategy for growth and success and then aligning that strategy to a technology strategy.”

But before campus IT leaders can begin any kind of strategy, they must be aware of the four main factors of the super storm, says the company, and how a four-cornerstone approach can help provide a customizable blueprint for action.

(Next page: Understanding the super storm; 4 cornerstones to success)


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