Every university has a student information system, which is either custom built or an off-the-shelf
solution designed to address a range of needs. Though such systems are adept at handling processes like undergraduate class registration for the registrar’s office, they cannot always efficiently address unique needs that arise, often quickly, for individual departments or schools. Such needs demand a system that is a lot more agile than traditional student information software.
Seeking a more responsive tool
The law school at Columbia University faced that challenge. The school’s chief information officer, Frantz Merine, sought something to meet the school’s various training and event registration needs, such as trainings on environmental law and investment arbitration. “Normally we would use the university’s system for something like this,” he says, but it wasn’t advanced enough to quickly handle events that might arise. “It felt behind the times in terms of some of the features we needed. We wanted something that would move a lot more nimbly in setting up events.”
Flexible fee options
The University’s treasury department recommended ABC Signup online registration software, which was already in use by the Columbia College of Dental Medicine and worked well with the university’s payment processor. Frantz says ABC Signup quickly proved to be a good fit for the law school. “What’s really helpful with ABC Signup is we can have a tiered payment structure, discount codes, and early bird registrations. Those features are very helpful because we can get a higher conversion rate by getting people to sign up a little bit earlier. If there’s a hardship case, a discount code is easy to set up. So, the ease of use of the interface and the flexibility the platform offers really gave us a high degree of freedom.”
Frantz says payment security was another huge benefit. “We can easily create a form with other web services,” he says. “However, collecting fees is not always the most efficient with PCI compliance and all the regulatory requirements we have to deal with here at the law school.” He says it eased his mind that ABC Signup already had the proper security measures in place to handle online payments.
In the time since the Law School and the College of Dental Medicine began using the registration management tool, the Department of Epidemiology and the School of Nursing at Columbia have also begun to employ ABC Signup registration software for continuing education.
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