Each day we’re faced with important decisions on whether to pay staff to develop the business applications required to run the admissions machine, or to outsource the work to a software company for development and possibly support. Below are 5 benefits of outsourcing your technology needs.
1) Cost Savings – Take for example the development of an online admission application. In order to build this type of software internally you must support a staff with the following skill sets: Subject Matter Expertise, Network and Hardware Architecture, Computer Programming, User Interface Design, Quality Assurance, Aesthetic Design, and Social Networking. Allowing for some crossover you’ll need at least three skilled staff members to complete this project. When you purchase a productized piece of customizable technology, the fee is often a small percentage of what the cost internally would be for salaries, benefits, and opportunity cost.
2) Experience and Business Intelligence – The outcome of a homegrown piece of software is not guaranteed. Issues like security, government compliance, and stability have come back to bite. When you purchase software from a company, it’s battle tested both internally, and from other clients in the field. It’s always in a vendors best interest to maintain an existing client relationship, so as new curve balls are sent flying, you’ve got an eager partner waiting to help.
3) No Turnover – It’s an unfortunate reality in higher education. Staff turns over. The question is not if it happens, it’s when it happens, will someone be able to grab the wheel and continue to steer the ship? An outsourced option allows for easy retraining and a standardized resource-plentiful framework.
4) Greater Staff Efficiency – A smaller staff is easier to manage. Decisions can be faster, less time needs to be spent tending to the sheep, and it allows for the staff you do carry to focus and develop within your organization.
5) Growth – If you study the institutions that have increased both their applicants and yield in the past 10 years, you’ll find that they’ve utilized technology in an effective manner. To do so they must be current with the expectations of their prospect pool. Rather then always trying to sort through fad and reality, allowing an organization to manage your tool profile will position you ahead of the curve and allow for steady results-based technology growth.