Paper inquiry cards are costing you more than you think

It’s just so simple — print out hundreds of paper inquiry cards, grab 50 pens from the stationary cupboard and you’re ready to recruit students. No software, or hardware needs to be purchased. No internet connection required— so what’s the problem?

Handwriting. You remember, it’s that skill you use once or twice a week. When you forget your phone and need to write a note. When you’re in a meeting and the sound of typing on a keyboard would be too rude.

Throughout the time I’ve been running Gecko, I’ve met institutes from all over the world. 70% of those I speak to rely on paper as a primary method of getting that initial contact from a student.

The problem is that if you’re anything like me, or like anyone for that matter - you struggle to read your own handwriting, never mind that of others. So unless you have a Graphology degree, then illegible handwriting is costing you big time.

How big a problem is it? Well, the institutes I’ve met think at least 30% of their paper inquiry cards are going in the trash due to completely illegible handwriting. It doesn’t stop there though, as data entry mistakes dent success further, and increase email bounce rates significantly.

Just think about that for a second — 30% is huge. If you capture 5,000 inquiries then that’s 1,500 that are in the trash.

This isn’t just about the potential revenue lost, it’s also about the first impression you’ve made to the student. After all they’ve handed you their contact information, and you haven’t contacted them. What will they tell their friends about that? How will they feel that you didn’t get back to them? Do you think they’ll make another inquiry?

Even the students who aren’t affected by any of the aforementioned problems still wait weeks to receive any communications from you — which I just don’t think works. Students are living in a real-time world where everything is instant, they won’t understand why its taken you 3 weeks to send them a follow up email.

Paper just isn’t as cheap as it looks, in fact it’s costing you at least 10 times more than our software and a few tablets would cost your institute, and that’s being conservative. Oh, and our software works offline so there’s no excuses there either!