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Research Agenda: Technology Solution and Provider Research

Our Higher Education Technology Research helps institutions select and deploy technology to further strategic decision-making and create successful outcomes through the implementation of technology platforms, solutions, and tools. We also help technology leaders understand consumer buying behavior and identify how and where their products fit into the expanding higher education technology landscape. This research agenda offers an overview of the topics that will guide our research and advising in 2016. Look for the following research deliverables and topics as part of your membership in the Eduventures Advisory Service for Higher Education Leaders:

 

RESEARCH DELIVERABLES

 

EDUVENTURES
WAKE-UP CALL
EDUVENTURES
TECH-ALERT
EDUVENTURES INSIGHTS TECHNOLOGY DEEP DIVE TOP TRAITS OF HIGHER EDUCATION LEADERS
Weekly analysis of pressing topics that matter to today’s higher education leaders in a succinct and digestible format. Focused analyses of the higher education technology market including trends to watch, new product announcements, and other notable events. These monthly issue-based reports are based on our proprietary surveys and primary research, interviews with industry leaders, and client interactions. Assessments of technology segments designed to deepen your understanding of technology trends through data-driven reports, vendor evaluations, and market projections. Research that identifies and benchmarks the people, programs, or initiatives that are leading the way and creating competitive advantage for colleges.

 

2016 RESEARCH TOPICS

 

Q1 & Q2

STUDENT SUCCESS & RETENTION SOLUTIONS
When it comes to retention solutions, higher education leaders have more choices available than ever before. With products promising more efficient data aggregation, deeper insights, and the ability to act more quickly to improve student success and outcomes, it can be challenging to make an informed decision. Our ongoing coverage of retention solutions will outline the trends and vendors that are driving the market and the key questions these solutions address at different points in the student lifecycle.

ADVANCEMENT CRM
The third report in our series on Constituent Relationship Management (CRM) solutions will examine the key factors that shape development offices’ decisions to change CRMs. As technology has advanced, so have CRM offerings, resulting in more diversity among providers and fewer limitations by product line. CRM conversion can be a daunting task to undertake. This report will illuminate profiles of organizations that are adopting new CRMs, detail the offerings that are most valuable to development leaders, and outline who is responsible for final decisions.

CLOUD-HOSTED SIS
Institutions seek flexible hosting options for their most critical systems, including complex platforms like the Student Information System. While every major vendor serving higher education with SIS technology has announced a cloud strategy in the past year, each approach is as different and complex as the vendors themselves. Vendors with international success are attempting to enter the U.S. market with cloud-based solutions that address needs that incumbent vendors have neglected. Eduventures has compiled profiles on these vendors and will report on the strengths and weaknesses in their approaches to cloud-hosted SIS, including interoperability, product roadmaps, pricing models, and implementation partner networks.

DATA PRIVACY & SECURITY
Across all segments of the education technology market, institutional buyers and end users alike are most concerned about the privacy and security of student, faculty, and employee records. Eduventures will monitor state and federal policy implications for institutions and technology vendors and highlight the potential impact of proposed legislation before it becomes law. We will publish best practices to aid institutions in developing privacy and security requirements for their vendor contracts. Similarly, Eduventures analysis will advise technology providers on how to keep pace with policy trends and become more transparent with their privacy and security safeguards for clients.

ONLINE & REMOTE PROCTORING
As online education continues to grow, accreditors are pressuring programs to prove that the students who enrolled are the same as the students showing up for class and taking high-stakes exams. In response to this demand for identity verification for online courses and assessments, an emerging market of vendors is selling products and services to offer these capabilities. Eduventures will profile each vendor that offers authentication, cheating detection, or proctored exam solutions to institutions, whether those solutions involve live proctors, recorded exam sessions for later review, or fully automated video inspection technology.

COMPETENCY-BASED EDUCATION MATURITY MODEL
Competency-based education (CBE) is an old idea that is getting fresh attention. Very few colleges and universities specialize in CBE, but hundreds are reportedly developing CBE plans. In CBE, institutions and policymakers see potential to respond to concerns about value and graduate employability by making desired student outcomes more explicit and assessment more tangible. Some versions of CBE also seek to dramatically reduce time to degree and cost. Eduventures has embarked on a three-year CBE study. In 2016, we will work toward a CBE maturity model to help institutions better understand their current stage of development, how they compare to others, and what tools and arrangements they need to reach their goals. We will refine the CBE maturity model through institutional surveys and interviews with leaders and practitioners.

BUSINESS INTELLIGENCE & ANALYTICS PLATFORMS
One of the most critical goals in implementing a data analytics platform is ensuring that it encourages users to leverage data to make decisions throughout the student lifecycle, including admissions and recruitment, student success, and alumni relations and fundraising. Our analysis will provide a roadmap for a powerful approach to data analysis, with particular focus on overcoming key roadblocks like low end user adoption, poor data quality, stakeholder resistance to change, and an unclear vision for data use.

SYSTEM INTEGRATION SOLUTIONS & IMPLEMENTATION SUPPORT
System integration impacts all higher education stakeholders who seek broad, unified, and secure access to information from across their institutional technology ecosystems. They need to understand the key terms and trends of system integration to decide whether and how to unite disparate databases and software applications. Our research will focus on different approaches to integrating higher education systems and provide advice for those making this important technology decision.

SOCIAL MEDIA TECHNOLOGIES
Institutions are moving beyond simply using social media to broadcast messages to prospects, current students, and alumni and are leveraging social media as a feedback channel to take the pulse of all stakeholders. Technology vendors that have been serving other industries are now turning their attention to higher education to provide social engagement and analytics tools, services, and strategies. Our research will follow emerging trends in other industries’ use of social media for opportunities to transfer technology and best practices to higher education.

ENTERPRISE CONTENT MANAGEMENT
Many institutions are familiar with using content management, document imaging, and workflow solutions for admissions and financial aid files. New applications for enterprise content management platforms span the entire student lifecycle. This includes content analytics of portfolio artifacts to aid in learning assessment, standardizing university relations messaging and CRM platform integration resources, and gift officer practice management tools that report donor activity to advancement offices. Our research and advisory services will cover how to use existing, off-the-shelf investment in content management platforms in outside-the-box applications.

LEARNING RELATIONSHIP MANAGEMENT SOLUTIONS
Higher education leaders are considering many approaches to personalizing student learning experiences. One approach under consideration is the learning relationship management (LRM) framework, which provides a set of tools, training, and technology to help institutions track students’ learning progress and leverage relationships with mentors throughout the student lifecycle. In 2016, Eduventures will embark on an LRM study, which will help further illuminate the LRM landscape and provide higher education leaders with the components and processes needed for a successful LRM implementation.

 

ADDITIONAL COVERAGE AREAS

COLLEGE-WIDE IT/ENTERPRISE BACKBONE

  • Forms management solutions
  • Grant and scholarship management solutions
  • Enterprise content management (ECM) solutions
  • Enterprise mobile solutions
  • Productivity and collaboration applications
  • Business intelligence and analytics platforms
  • Enterprise resource planning (ERP) platforms
  • Student information systems
  • System integration solutions and implementation support

ENROLLMENT MANAGEMENT

  • Lead aggregator solutions
  • Integrated recruiting and enrollment management solutions
  • Constituent relationship management (CRM) solutions
  • Enrollment analytics solutions
  • Social recruitment and engagement platforms
  • Financial aid processing solutions
  • College application hosting
  • Tuition management solutions
  • Commerce solutions

ADVANCEMENT

  • Crowdsourcing platforms
  • Donor management solutions
  • Advancement analytics
  • Advancement CRM platforms
  • Donor data services
  • Social media platforms

STUDENT SUCCESS & INSTRUCTION

  • Web and mobile accessibility solutions
  • Student success and retention solutions
  • Learning analytics platforms
  • ePortfolio solutions
  • Career readiness solutions
  • One-stop solutions
  • Textbooks, digital course materials, and courseware
  • Adaptive learning platforms
  • Lecture capture and video platforms
  • Online course providers
  • Online assessment providers
  • Learning management systems
  • Online program managers
  • Competency-based platforms and advisory services
  • Learning relationship management solutions
  • Teacher/Faculty evaluation
  • Online proctoring solutions

 

SIZING UP THE CRM MARKET 
This series of reports will examine one of the most crucial investments a college can make: the constituent relationship management (CRM) system. This research will demystify the variety of tools and vendors in the market, as well as help you make a case for an enterprise-wide CRM. In addition, it will provide insight on how innovative colleges are using their CRM technology to improve their recruiting efforts, increase productivity, and strengthen returns on their investments. The report will include spotlights on leading vendors in this space and what makes them a good fit.

KEEPING PACE WITH COMPETENCY-BASED EDUCATION
Competency-based education is on the rise. Higher education leaders need to understand the key terms, trends, and changes in the policy landscape in order to make sense of the groundswell of new tools and technologies designed to support competency-based approaches to teaching and learning. We will provide analysis of this rising movement, including insight into how colleges and universities approach this practice, seize its benefits, and navigate its challenges. We will also focus on technology vendors active in this space to provide colleges that are either engaged in competency-based education or new to the practice with analysis and advice for making important technology decisions.

DEVELOPING COLLABORATIVE PARTNERSHIPS WITH ONLINE PROGRAM MANAGERS
As the landscape of Online Program Managers (OPMs) matures, colleges and universities will continue to seek more flexible, adaptable, and collaborative partnerships to support their online and hybrid programs. Our analysis will provide a roadmap to facilitate a more productive partnership between colleges and providers, including the value chain of services offered, the differentiators and benefits of working with select providers, and the key factors for successful implementation.

READING THE EARLY WARNING SIGNS
As higher education institutions face increasing challenges to student retention and persistence, many are leveraging learning technologies to impact student outcomes, engagement, and attendance. Eduventures will provide a detailed analysis of the various technologies employed in early warning and intervention tools and document best practices in the use of these often complex data reporting, communications, and case management systems.

PROMOTING BETTER LEARNER INTERACTIONS
One of the most critical factors in promoting better interactions between faculty, support staff, and student learners is the institutions choice in learning management systems (LMS). This research will review the various LMS vendors in the market and aid institutions in selecting the right vendor(s) or maximizing their current investment in platforms and solutions. The first report in this series will include in-depth vendor spotlights and emerging trends on LMS capabilities and interoperability demands.

BUILDING A STRONGER SIS FOUNDATION
The student information system (SIS) is the bedrock of student educational records data upon which all other successful instructional, advisory, back-office, and institutional research functions are built. Today, SIS vendors must not only compete based on the core records management and workflow solutions of their products, but also differentiate in terms of their capability to meet institutional needs for alternative hosting models. Other concerns include interoperability with 3rd parties using technology standards, and vendors’ sensitivity to the privacy and security of student records managed by their systems. Eduventures will profile vendors based on their ability to address these needs, as well as discuss important issues institutions must consider when ready to select an SIS platform or embark upon large scale SIS integration projects.

 

ADDITIONAL COVERAGE AREAS

COLLEGE-WIDE IT/ENTERPRISE BACKBONE

  • Tuition Management Solutions
  • Commerce Solutions
  • Web Content Management (WCM) Solutions
  • Forms Management Systems
  • Grant & Scholarship Management Solutions
  • Enterprise Content Management (ECM) Solutions
  • Professional Services & Integration Solutions
  • Enterprise Mobile Solutions
  • Public and Private Cloud Service Providers
  • Client Virtualization
  • Storage & Data Management Platforms
  • Productivity & Collaboration Application Solutions
  • Enterprise Application & Data Management Solutions
  • Software-Defined Networking (SDN) Solutions
  • Business Intelligence (BI) & Analytics Platforms
  • Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) Platforms
  • Student Information Systems

ENROLLMENT MANAGEMENT

  • Lead Aggregator Solutions
  • Campaign & Inquiry Management Solutions
  • Brand & Creative Agencies
  • Marketing, Communication, & Digital Services
  • International Recruiting & Pathway Solutions
  • International Recruiting Tour Management Solutions
  • Integrated Recruiting & Enrollment Management Solutions
  • Customer Relationship Management (CRM) Platforms
  • Enrollment Analytics Platforms
  • Social Recruitment & Engagement Platforms
  • Website Hosting & Analytics Solutions
  • Financial Aid Processing Solutions
  • Financial Aid Advising & Modeling Solutions
  • Application Hosting

ADVANCEMENT

  • Crowdsourcing and Social Media Platforms
  • Donor Management & CRM Solutions
  • Advancement Analytics

STUDENT SUCCESS & INSTRUCTION

  • Student Success & Retention Solutions
  • Learning Analytics Platforms
  • Institutional Effectiveness Solutions
  • ePortfolio Solutions
  • Career Assessment & Certification Services
  • Career Readiness Solutions
  • Social Listening Platforms
  • Social Retention Networks
  • Social Engagement Apps & Platforms
  • One-Stop Solutions
  • Textbooks, Digital Course Materials, & Courseware Solutions
  • Adaptive Learning Platforms
  • Adaptive Content Publishers
  • Social Learning Management Platforms
  • E-Learning Content Authoring Tools
  • Lecture Capture Solutions
  • Video Platforms
  • Online Courses
  • Online Assessment & Security Management
  • Learning Management Systems (LMS)
  • Mobile Learning Management Systems (LMS)
  • Online Program Managers (OPM)
  • Competency-Based Learning Platforms

 

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