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Undertake all of the ten tutorial activities individually on a weekly basis and post your individual response on the appropriate forum on CampusMoodle. Responses should identify all sources/sites used.
Where required in the tutorial activity students then need to work as a team to summarise and present their collective findings in the relevant tutorial. This will sometimes involve compromise.
Each week one or two teams will be chosen to make a presentation but all groups need to prepare as the presenting groups will only be identified on the day of the presentation at the beginning of the tutorial. This will allow you to input to the feedback to presenting students with knowledge of the subject matter. The team list is up on Moodle.
Read the following short case and then undertake the brief provided to produce an individual management report. Make sure that all the criteria are covered in the report.
CRM Case Study
Scottish Universities face an increasingly challenging time. The student recruitment market is highly competitive and this coupled with the pressures of funding bodies, governments and the global economic downturn presents a significant challenge for the sector. Add to this pending public sector cuts and a degree of uncertainty in the Scottish political landscape, at least until after the May elections, and it is clear that Scottish Universities must adapt in order to sustain their current market position and secure competitive advantage.
Aberdeen Business School (ABS)
Aberdeen Business School has been highly successful in recruiting students across all disciplines; Undergraduate, Postgraduate, Distance Learning and Doctoral. The University is funded by the Scottish Funding Council (SFC) which receives funding from the Scottish Executive. This funding constitutes approximately (53%) of the funding for the School with the remainder of funding mainly coming from the provision of full cost courses and from research/consultancy/corporate activity. Sustaining and growing full cost income is a strategic imperative for both Aberdeen Business School (ABS) and the University.
Currently ABS is heavily reliant on attracting full time international postgraduate students with 76% of its full time postgraduate students recruited from the international community. The ongoing success of ABS is highly reliant on its capacity to continue to recruit and expand its international markets.
ABS has also been highly successful in developing distance learning programmes and is one of the biggest UK providers of distance learning education in the UK. Distance learning recruitment now outstrips that of full time. The demand for part time courses has fallen significantly and the School has sought to address this by offering new models of delivery including blended delivery.
Statement of the Problem
Over the last two years ABS programmes have attracted an increasing number of applications; however this has not translated into an increase in student numbers. Annual Course Appraisals noted that applications had increased by 10.32% across all Masters Courses; however, enrolments had fallen by 2.2%. This signals that the Schoolââ‚¬â„¢s marketing strategies are effective but there needs to be more effort put into converting this pool of applicants into students.
ABS has therefore invested in strategies to enhance its customer relationship management (CRM) by improving both the quality and quantity of engagement activity with its applicants. Such strategies have included introducing bespoke communication plans for each course, development of a guide specifically for distance learning students and some use of social networking media and implementing initial CRM systems. Such systems have been mainly focusing on attracting applicants and keeping in touch with them throughout the application process and some early retention activity. From the perspective of ABS, CRM is about creating a competitive advantage by being the best at retaining, understanding, communicating and developing existing student relationships, in addition to attracting and keeping new students.
Aims of Study
This study aims to examine the symbiotic relationship between CRM and Strategic Project Management (SPM) to identify how SPM and particularly certain tools and techniques of SPM can help ABS deliver and develop existing student relationships, in addition to attracting and keeping new postgraduate students in both the full time and distance learning mode. In effect you are required to develop a university wide strategic approach for CRM using strategic project management tools that will reduce costs and increase profitability by enhancing student satisfaction, experience and loyalty.
Produce a management report which:
1. Assesses the specific opportunities and limitations of introducing a structured strategic management approach to the attraction and management of the application stage of university entry and also the retention of postgraduate students in ABS.
2. Analyse the customer relationship management systems, processes and strategies within ABS and identify three potential but differing ââ‚¬Ëœhigh levelââ‚¬â„¢ strategies which ABS might be expected to pursue in the light of your findings. Undertake a PESTLE analysis and/or Five Forces analysis of cost/time/quality/market/environment/technology in relation to these strategies and then select the most appropriate strategy for ABS. You should clarify how the approach you select, might be used to bridge any gaps in the current CRM provision.
3. Design and develop a CRM strategy and policies to deliver the preferred approach. You should use any of the tools and techniques of SPM discussed in the module to undertake any analysis and to develop a CRM strategy.
4. Discuss how any TWO of the techniques discussed in the module (programme management, portfolio management, performance measurement etc) might add value to the preferred approach and facilitate and improve the quality of student/University interactions and maintain a long term profitable relationship for both parties. You must demonstrate how your preferred approach would reduce costs and increase profitability by enhancing student satisfaction, experience and loyalty.
5. Critically evaluate the strategic role of leadership and team management in the initiation, definition, planning and execution of whatever approach you select.
6. Critically evaluate how, whatever approach you have selected, would improve customer satisfaction, reduce the number of risks and problems and increase success.
Your report must answer the following questions:
What is the best approach to CRM for ABS?
What media should be used?
At which points of the applicant journey is it most critical for ABS to engage with applicants?
Will this CRM approach alone deliver the required improvement in applicant conversion or does ABS need to investigate other strategies?
The Sponsor for this project is Mrs Sheonagh Rowley, Administration Manager ABS. Arrangements will be made for you to spend some time with Mrs Rowley during the module. In the meantime please do NOT contact her.
Core Report Requirements
You are required to submit a management report based on the CRM case and requirements outlined. The report should meet the criteria listed above specifically analysing how strategic project management tools and techniques could add specific value by bridging management gaps, as well as discussing the benefits and limitations of the chosen strategic CRM framework.
You must research thoroughly the topic area for relevant and recent theory and developments ââ‚¬" you should cover strategy per se, strategic management and strategic project management as well as customer relationship management.
You must work out a coherent structure for the report and your arguments.
4. Once you have established a coherent argument, write a proper introduction to your report, as well as a logical conclusion.
5. Use footnotes for references ONLY; do not use footnotes for substantive points/arguments and text.
6. You must provide a reference section as well as using references appropriately throughout the text of your report.
7. Check your final version on adequacy of expression, style, coherence of structure and argument, typographical and grammatical errors.
The Management Report for Part 2 should contain:
A contents page
A list of tables and figures used
An executive summary
Numbered sections and sub sections (e.g. 1, 1.1. etc)
Main Body which addresses criterion parts
Recommendations (where appropriate)
Appendices, if needed, at the end