Student Manager, ACEweb
Lakeland Community College has a database of roughly 11,000 names. Approximately 15,000 registrations are recorded annually
The “City of Faith and Beauty”, Kirtland, OH, also boasts a bustling community college. Lakeland Community College is the first college in Ohio founded by vote of the people, a fact never far from the mind of their Director of Continuing Education Bill Beisel.
“We’re not the biggest college in the area. In fact, we’re relatively small compared to other community colleges in surrounding counties. But, even though our registrations have suffered with the economy, we still have an annual enrollment of just over 15,000 this year.”
“The biggest problem we had in our old ERP system was that the registration process was hugely difficult for participants. There was a four-page application: three pages of instructions and then an actual application. You applied to the college, were admitted, then you waited two days for an ID. Then you could actually register for a class. Even a slow typist can register for a class with Student Manager in under three minutes. That’s a great improvement!”
Obviously, using the college ERP system was cumbersome. So, when Beisel joined Lakeland just over two years ago one of his first priorities was a better registration system.
“We had strong IT support” says Beisel, “and we wanted control of our system. When I arrived a minor change to the location of a class had to be submitted and altered by someone across campus.”
The system was tedious, time consuming and burdensome. Everyone agreed it needed to be changed, but it wasn’t exactly easy to transform the way the entire campus worked with Continuing Education. “Now we control our own destiny and priorities”, says Beisel, “and our business efficiency has dramatically improved. We’ve gone from total reliance to total independence.”
“We significantly altered our business operations when we implemented Student Manager and the changes created angst among our staff. But our chief detractors are now Student Manager’s biggest supporters.”
“ACEweb has helped us a lot. Since we began using the system August 11, 2008 we’ve had 15,630 registrations and about 30% have arrived via the web. We’d like to increase that to 40% next year, along with continued improvement in operational efficiencies.”
“We’ve aligned our major group offerings with our plan and we work well as a team to present relevant course and program offerings to the community. We’ve been able to break each major course grouping into a business unit. We have a separate budget for each one and with Student Manager’s reporting capacity it’s very easy to manage.”
Sharing Student Manager’s capabilities has been a bonus to the campus as well. In 2009, Continuing Education offered to handle registrations for the prestigious Alumni Hall of Fame annual event. “It’s a good way to help other units with little effort on our part. After all, when you’re taking over 15,000 registrations, what’s another hundred or so?”