• Feature Spotlight: Student Integration Engine

    Only about 40% of AwardSpring customers take advantage of one of our most powerful features: the Student Integration Engine. So, what does it do? And how does it benefit institutions and scholarship administrators?

    #1: It maintains accurate student data.

    By pulling student data from your backend system, you no longer have to rely on students to provide accurate data during the application process.

    #2: It keeps data in sync across multiple platforms.

    With our Student Integration Engine, you can pull information like a student’s major, class schedule, or GPA directly into AwardSpring. Use that data to maintain a student’s scholarship eligibility and you’ll eliminate a few administrative tasks for yourself!

    #3: It makes the application process even easier.

    Populating your application with student data points from your SIS can dramatically reduce the time it takes a student to finish applying. In fact, if you can import a large volume of data points, you may be able to eliminate the application process altogether! Just let AwardSpring become your decision engine and match students to awards. Simple scholarships with no additional requirements will not necessitate any further action on the students’ part; if there are additional requirements, students can simply respond to those questions and essay prompts without re-entering any of the data that was pulled from the SIS.

    Our Student Integration Engine can be added at any time for a one-time integration fee and a small annual maintenance fee. If you’re interested in learning more about our Student Integration Engine or would like to add it, simply contact us at support@awardspring.com.

  • Making Informed Scholarship Management Decisions with Report Data

    Have you fully explored AwardSpring’s reporting capabilities? If not, you should know that the information available within our standard and custom reports can reveal important statistics about your application, awarding decisions, review process, and applicants - all of which you can use to track trends over time or improve the management your scholarship program. Follow our guide to discover which reports to run (or ask for) to help you track and achieve your most important goals.

    Improving Your Application

    We recommend revisiting and optimizing your application after every award cycle, and our Student Answers report will help you understand what exactly should be updated. This report will show you which sections of your application were left incomplete by each applicant. Notice a particular section that was abandoned often? You might need to edit the question, change the format, or even eliminate it altogether to boost application completeness in the next award cycle.

    The Qualified Students Report is another standard report you can use to glean information that will improve your application. This report shows you all of the students who were qualified for, but not applied to, a given scholarship. Run this report to look for trends - you may need to re-enable auto-apply or reduce your qualification requirements if you have a large number of qualified-but-unapplied students for a particular scholarship.

    Refining Your Review Process

    First, ensure that your application includes questions that are relevant to your goals and targets, so that the relevant responses are picked up in reports. For example, if gender parity is a focus of your donors or organization, be sure to ask a question about gender on your application! (And remember, any question you ask can always be blinded from reviewers later - so you don’t need to avoid asking questions that could potentially introduce bias to the review process.)

    Ask us for a custom report that overlays your reviewer scores with demographic data to assess whether your review process is fair and unbiased. If you notice preferential scoring for specific demographics, this can be the justification you need for blinding more of your data or even changing up your review staff.

    Analyzing Your Awards

    Custom reports that include demographics about your awarded students can reveal progress toward meeting specific targets, such as awarding more women for STEM scholarships, awarding more low-income students, or achieving gender parity in scholarship awards. Let us know which demographics are important to you, and we can create a report that suits your needs.

    Tracking Trends

    Report data can help you tell a story about the success of your scholarship management program over time, too. We can create a custom report for you that examines any number of statistics for a given award cycle, including completed, started, or submitted applications; number of awarded students; total dollar amount awarded; awarded student demographics; and many others. The longer you use AwardSpring - and the longer you keep the relevant application questions unchanged - the more complete your picture of progress will become.

    For help accessing reports, or to request a custom report, get in touch at support@awardspring.com.

  • Syncing AwardSpring Data with Other Systems

    AwardSpring collects a wealth of data about students and applicants - and you can sync that information with your institution’s other data systems to solve problems, gain insights, and improve efficiencies.

    The Awarded Students report is a great starting point for using data to solve a wide range of scholarship-related problems. This report covers the basics, including student name, awarded amount, and fund ID, all in a .csv format that’s universally compatible with other systems. How can you use it? Here’s an example: Sync your awarded students data with your donor engagement platform so you can see at a glance how much of your donors’ funds were utilized during a specific time frame. Or sync this report with your accounting platform, so you have an accurate record of expected and actual scholarship money disbursement.

    What if you have another goal that requires information beyond the data contained in the Awarded Students report? For example, your institution may wish to improve diversity, and would like to collect information about existing students or applicants to set a baseline and track trends over time. The first step is to talk to your counterparts in your institution’s relevant offices to find out what data points are required. If those data points are represented in your application, you can ask AwardSpring’s support team to create a custom report for you. Custom reports eliminate the errors and processing time associated with manual data entry, and they can be created for you in just 5-7 business days. Once your custom report is built, it will be available in your reports dropdown forever, ready to run whenever you need it.

    In some cases, using your AwardSpring data may require some advance planning. Let’s say your institution wants to encourage retention of high-risk students. Collecting information about family income and scholarship awards would help you track the impact of scholarships on retention - but your application doesn’t include a question about family income. In this case, you can add the question to your application and begin collecting relevant data after the next award cycle.

    If you need a custom report or want to brainstorm ways to extract the information you need from AwardSpring, contact our customer support team at support@awardspring.com and we’ll be glad to help!

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