Why You Need Academic Scheduling Software to Keep Students on Track
Universities and colleges face a tall task when ensuring that each of their students is satisfied with their academic experience. Higher education requires an incredible amount of organization and collaboration, and bureaucracy can become a problem. When there are thousands of students, or in many cases, tens of thousands of students, it can be incredibly difficult to keep everyone happy with the quality of education and campus life they receive.
Considering students are investing a lot of time and money into the schools they attend, it is vital that they receive the experience they deserve. But how? Bottlenecks are everywhere in the higher education experience. The scheduling process is extremely difficult, customer service is often incredibly overburdened, and according to MLive, the ratio of students to academic advisors is 375-to-1. Accessing an academic advisor can be quite difficult, and the student experience suffers because of it.
Students struggle to organize their schedules without the proper assistance, and if they don’t meet their degree requirements promptly, they won’t graduate on time. Academic and class scheduling is so important, yet many students either don’t get the access they need or are let down by archaic scheduling systems at the school. With so much to juggle, school administrators must provide their students with the best possible academic scheduling utilities that they possibly can. That is where QLess and other appointment scheduling software comes in.
QLess is a tool utilized by higher education institutes around the world. It is a school scheduling system covering three key areas: appointment scheduling, queue management, and business intelligence. It is designed to help schools decrease student on-campus wait times, make resources more accessible, and simplify the scheduling process. It has a broad impact across campus, with the ability to boost student satisfaction rates up to 75%, and it can completely change how universities operate.
The online booking experience needs a lot of work at most universities. There are consistent roadblocks that appear throughout that disrupt the process for students. But with academic scheduling software and an appointment booking app like QLess, universities can implement some much-needed changes.
The Importance of Helping Organize Student Schedules
Higher education can be an overwhelming time for students. For most students, it is their first time being away from home or having an independent academic experience. It isn’t up to universities to hold students’ hands all the way through, but they must provide students with everything they need to get the most out of their education. Higher education institutes’ reputations are dependent on providing a good education and experience to their students, and if they fall short, students don’t have to stay.
While universities’ primary purposes are to educate, they are also businesses, and students are their customers. If students are unhappy with the experience, they can take their education elsewhere. 2.1 million college students transferred institutions in the 2020-21 academic year, according to Forbes. This was actually a decline from the previous year, so students moving schools is extremely common.
Part of ensuring student retention is making life easier for them. Having highly-effective online scheduling software that helps all students efficiently access campus resources and plan their school schedule is a way to do this. It can be incredibly alienating and stressful for students trying to build their calendar who can’t access the right resources.
The school scheduling process is difficult. Many issues pop up for both staff and students. Classes get overbooked or underbooked. Systems don’t let students sign up for compulsory classes. Students send back-and-forth emails with advisors but don’t get appointments. This is incredibly frustrating but can be changed with the help of the right school scheduling system.
Roadblocks to Building an Effective Schedule
Higher education is a massive industry that has to accommodate a huge number of students. There are roughly 16 million students enrolled as undergraduates in higher education institutes in America right now. Some schools have fewer students to deal with, with smaller schools having enrollments of 5,000 or below. Then there are colleges like Arizona State or Texas A&M, each with more than 55,000 students. That is the size of a small city. Managing that many conflicting needs are incredibly complicated.
There are a lot of different constraints on higher education institutes that make scheduling complicated. For starters, there is a finite amount of staff. This includes both professors, administrators, and advisors. Building the schedule of classes to accommodate the limited resources isn’t easy.
It is further complicated when adding things like student majors and compulsory courses. All students have mandatory classes and labs, and those classes can quickly become overbooked. There are also issues like class sizes, the need to ensure that students’ classes aren’t double booked, and so much more. Essentially, it is incredibly difficult to ensure that time slots are filled, students take the right classes, and everything runs according to schedule.
That is why online appointment scheduling software and a school scheduling system like QLess are needed. Both staff and students deserve not to be overwhelmed by the burden of their schedules, but there is just so much to juggle. Having an all-in-one appointment booking software designed to make administrators, advisors, and students have an easier time navigating the bureaucracy of higher education can be a game changer.
Academic Scheduling Software: A High-Impact Solution
If you are looking to reduce operating costs, increase student and staff satisfaction, and improve the ability of staff to handle a higher workload of appointments, appointment scheduling may be for you. No longer is your scheduling limited to business hours, or will staff have to deal with endless streams of disgruntled students. Academic scheduling software provides a concrete solution to some of the key points of contention mentioned.
QLess is a cloud-based scheduling system that can be accessed by staff and students at any time from anywhere. It is a flexible and customizable scheduling and appointment management system with several key features that can significantly impact several aspects of the academic scheduling process. Let’s dive into what exactly those features are and how they can help all members of your higher education community.
QLess has customizable scheduling features that can be accessed through the appointment booking app. Students can access the academic scheduling at any time, and there is a visible calendar feature with drag and drop capabilities where students can view and edit their schedules. This can also be customized and edited by staff, with restrictions implemented for students according to schedule. It is an easy way to manually control the scheduling process from all ends.
Advisement appointments are still critical, as there is a lot to talk over for staff and students. Booking and managing these appointments has never been easier. Students can use the appointment scheduling tool to fill open slots, select which kind of appointment they need, and add pertinent information, all from their phones.
QLess also offers a virtual queue that shows current wait times, which they can join remotely. This means students don’t have to sit and wait in academic offices for appointments for a long time, removing congestion in school buildings and giving students more freedom. This multi-layered tool can dramatically impact several aspects of campus life.
Simplifying Staffs’ Schedules
As we’ve mentioned, it isn’t just students struggling with the burden of scheduling. Staff also have to deal with a massive increase in appointments around the start of the year and navigate scheduling difficulties alongside students. They deserve a positive experience and a less stressful work environment, and administrators can assist them by implementing a school scheduling system.
There are many different ways that appointment scheduling apps help staff at the university. One of the primary ones is by simplifying the management of their day-to-day. Administrators have complete control over the appointment calendar with QLess and can organize it in a wide range of ways. They can organize the calendar according to appointment types or urgency and assign certain kinds of appointments to certain staff members. It is an administration system that gives staff a more straightforward workflow.
There are also features on the app that allow for bi-directional communication. Staff and students can message back and forth about appointments on a messaging app rather than constant emailing. Students can inform staff if they’re running late or going to miss appointments, and the schedules can be manually adjusted to ensure that there is less dead time.
QLess also sends SMS reminders for upcoming appointments rather than email reminders which often go ignored. This ensures that staff is getting more out of their day, helping the maximum number of students possible and greatly reducing appointment no-shows. The overall improvement in communication and clarity between advisors, other staff, and students will be dramatic.
Both students and staff deserve clarity and a system that eases the heavy burden on them. A digital solution like QLess makes a drastic difference in the scheduling process on both ends.
A Campus Built for the Future
The customers that higher education institutes are geared towards are typically young. Most current higher education students are either Gen Z or millennials. With that comes a reliance on technology and the expectation that their institution will properly utilize it. The modern higher education institute should be focused on implementing technology to improve their operations and build toward the future. School scheduling software is a great step toward digitalization.
Gen Z is a generation that has been raised on digital experiences. They are the largest cohort of undergraduate higher education students, and they are a generation in part defined by their use of technology. 98% of Gen Z owns a smartphone, and 91% have had one since before they were sixteen.
Higher education institutes are under pressure from students to implement technology more in their day-to-day experience. Students’ preference toward technology should be accommodated, yet many institutes use the same scheduling systems that they relied on ten or twenty years prior. Implementing a new system is a great way to show students you are building a campus geared toward the future.
QLess is a scalable system you can implement into your institution’s operations and utilize for years to come. It is cloud-based and mobile compatible. Students and staff can access it in several ways. The simplest is through the appointment scheduling app, which can be used on any smartphone. It can also be accessed through a desktop website or even on-site kiosks.
With so many current undergraduate students raised on smartphones and technology, QLess is a solution that aligns with modern students’ preferences. It is driven by technology to increase convenience and simplify access to resources, and it makes the campus better fit for a future even more driven by technology.
A Better Student Experience
Higher education institutes’ success is determined by their ability to provide a good education and student experience. As we’ve mentioned, students are customers. They can pursue their education elsewhere. If higher education institutes are overwhelming them with bureaucracy, making it incredibly difficult to reach staff, and making class bookings a dreaded part of every semester, this will heavily impact how students feel about their university.
The QLess cloud-based appointment scheduling software can dramatically impact the student experience. It completely changes how they navigate the university administrative process and streamline it more conveniently. Let’s explore how a school scheduling system improves the student experience.
The QLess queue management software reduces the need for students to spend any time waiting in line at academic offices. Students can check in from their dorms, apartments, cafes, libraries, or wherever they are, see the length of the line and plan accordingly. This is the perfect solution for students who still aren’t comfortable spending a lot of time in a crowded environment. Students have more freedom to determine how the administration process works for them.
Using QLess for class bookings similarly makes things drastically more convenient. It is an intuitive process that can be done with a drag and drop dashboard interface from your phone. Because there can be access restrictions, students can determine their schedule according to the restrictions on their accounts. This will reduce the frustration of dealing with outdated scheduling systems that make registration a nightmare.
Focusing on the student experience is a great way for universities to grow their prestige and increase their profitability. According to Forbes, companies that lead in the customer experience area outperform companies that lag behind by 80%. Implementing school scheduling systems is a proven way to improve the overall on-campus student experience.
High-Quality Data to Guide Decision-Making
Education is about using information to better understand the world around you. Data is similarly about using information to better understand your business. It is hard for universities to acquire solid data about processes like wait times and how certain academic offices are performing, but QLess opens the door to important insights that universities can use to inform how they structure key aspects of their operation.
Without an effecting appointment scheduling and smart queue app, there is no real way for higher education institutes to gather data about wait times and no-show percentages. However, QLess business intelligence features offer highly accurate looks into several key facets of your academic offices’ performance.
There are numerous key metrics that QLess provides insights into. Administrators can see the median wait time, the appointment no-show percentage, how many people have been served in a day, and much more. This information is accessible on a dashboard that puts the numbers into easily understandable visual charts and trends.
The data can also be segmented into several different categories. Administrators can look at trends according to academic offices, times of the day, staff, day of the week, and more. This is critical information that can reveal important trends playing out across campus. The information gathered from the business intelligence can guide decision-making on how to improve your administrative experience.
If you are seeing data that indicates notable trends are playing out at certain times or in certain offices, you are armed with the information you need to address bottlenecks that could be holding back your academic offices. Data like this is incredibly valuable and can lead to an academic office that provides a more seamless and effective service to students.
Make Campus A Less Stressful Environment
Higher education can be a stressful place for both staff and students. There is a lot of pressure on all parties, and academics foster competition. It can be overwhelming and mentally exhausting, and institutions have a responsibility to limit the stress on staff and students. The issue has gotten worse in recent years, to the point where stress levels among students are a legitimate, serious concern that needs to be addressed.
According to PBS, 48% of college students reported moderate or severe psychological stress in a recent comprehensive survey. There is an epidemic among students where the burdens of high tuition costs, stressful classes, and the experience of being away from family cause severe anxiety and loneliness. While higher education institutes can’t completely solve this issue on their own, easing the burden on students is a must.
The pandemic has only exacerbated this issue, with anxiety and mental health problems rising across the country. While certain elements of the higher education experience are always going to be stressors, such as exams, school scheduling and academic advisement do not have to be stressful times for students. Difficulty arranging mandatory and elective classes or accessing counselors and school resources for help can cause anxiety and add to students’ stress, but this doesn’t have to be the case.
Schools can make this aspect of their administrative process significantly less anxiety-inducing by providing students with appointment scheduling software that makes registration a breeze. QLess will make it drastically easier for students to manage their calendars with a simplified dashboard, administrative controls over who can access what, and an easy-to-use interface. Schools can set the requirements for students to register for classes, and students can enjoy a stress-free scheduling experience.
If students need assistance, every aspect of the appointment is as frictionless as possible. QLess makes it incredibly easy to schedule an appointment, students can communicate back and forth with staff, and when they are ready for their appointment, they can check into a virtual line and wait from wherever they want. This is a way to dramatically decrease the difficulty and roadblocks of what is often an unnecessarily stressful experience. Students deserve to have their load lightened, particularly when rates of stress and anxiety are climbing to new heights.
Higher education is an incredibly important industry, and the school scheduling process is a big part of what makes it run. The student calendar can be difficult to fill properly, with many obstacles that make building a schedule a logistical nightmare. For starters, schools often don’t have the resources to give proper attention to each of their students, with the ratio of students to counselors incredibly high. There are also issues like class size caps, student major obligations, and space limitations that make getting each student on track with the right schedule difficult.
That is why a school scheduling system like QLess can be an asset to higher education institutes. It makes it easier for staff and students to build schedules that work under the logistical restraints, improves communication, reduces stress, and makes academic offices more efficient and accessible. Every school must offer its students the best possible academic experience, and QLess helps remove numerous roadblocks that obstruct institutions from doing this.
QLess has many high-value features that remove the friction from school scheduling and academic appointments. The appointment software makes scheduling different kinds of advisement time slots simple and allows staff to effectively manage and streamline their calendars. The waiting line management software is a virtual queue students can check into and monitor wait times, reducing the need for in-person lines. And with the school scheduling system, students can seamlessly build and oversee their academic experience.
QLess is a tech solution that transforms several key aspects of higher education institutions to make them more efficient, convenient, and effective. It is geared to the modern student and gives schools the tools they need to provide their students with the experience they deserve.
Try a QLess Demo Today to see first-hand the value our school scheduling system can provide.