In the student recruitment journey, online plays a hugely important role – it’s where young people go to find information on courses, open days and student life. They need to know what their university experience could be about.
Research by Google shows that emotional connection is vital in the HE decision-making process – it’s so important for universities to create an online presence and forge emotional ties with potential students.
UEA, always looking to ‘do different’, challenged us to break boundaries with an evolutionary approach to student recruitment. Our task was to design an online tool which would (a) capture student data and (b) motivate and inspire students to apply to UEA. Our thinking led us to develop ‘yourUEA’ – an engaging, customised university experience.
System architecture and design.
We were keen to make yourUEA an interesting and engaging digital platform and began by setting key goals – what did we want students to do on the site? How would we measure success? What technologies should we use? What data should be captured given the requirements around GDPR? How would the site interface with UEA internal systems?
Initial client workshops and competitor research helped frame the brief, facilitating the development of a project roadmap. Wireframes and a full technical specification were drawn up before moving onto design and development.
It’s all about choice.
The concept behind yourUEA was to enable prospective students to build their own UEA experience – based on a series of inputs. A set of seven simple questions allowed the system to work out individual preferences around lifestyle, interests, music, friends and sport to generate a personalised page.
Populated with additional content and links to UEA course catalogue, open days, virtual campus tour, student life – as well as interesting stats and videos on Norwich and all it has to offer prospective students.
Fully-customisable and future-proofed.
Based on a CMS framework, UEA are able to control all aspects of the tool including adding further questions, answers and pages – ensuring longevity and relevance into the future. UEA’s International department have already adapted a version of the site for overseas recruitment, successfully using social media as a channel to drive visitors.