MessageMedia SMS Integration into JobReady Sees More Effective Communication with AIPT Students
The Australian Institute of Personal Trainers (AIPT) is Australia's leading provider of practical fitness education. Established in 1999, the company has grown to a network of over 100 Campuses and over 250 Mentors Australia-wide, the largest national provider and a leading employment network in the fitness education sector.
AIPT uses JobReady, a VET and Employment Services software. This cloud-based Student Management System delivers operational efficiencies in its business through streamlining and automating operations and business processes. JobReady includes an integrated SMS functionality provided by MessageMedia, where SMS messaging is automated based on a system trigger, or sent manually as required by the user.
Jan Parsons, eLearning Manager AIPT, said that they have been using SMS for four years. “We've had great results with SMS and will continue to use it as a communication channel with students.”
Finding a More Efficient way of Communicating with Students
Before SMS was implemented at AIPT, communication with students was predominately through phone calls and emails. “We were looking for a communication alternative that is more effective than phone calls and emails.” said Jan. “We found some students were not very responsive to emails, as they don’t check them very often.”
AIPT decided to incorporate SMS as a communication channel for student communication.
SMS is very effective because it has a 98% open rate and over 90% of messages are read within three minutes. It's also an efficient form of communication, and it is platform agnostic. This means it doesn't matter what type of mobile phone a student has, or how old it is, the message will always get through.
When considering MessageMedia as its SMS supplier, AIPT was clear about the criteria that had to be met:
- Functionality - needs to have sufficient functionality for our requirements, e.g. integration with JobReady
- Cost - needs to be reasonably priced
- Ease of use - needs to be easy to set up and use
- Proven track record - needs to have good reviews and a proven track record
“In general we are really happy with the results we are getting from our SMS system, and highly satisfied with the way it integrates with JobReady,” said Jan.
“SMS has really supported our business growth through assisting with customer service levels. Our students definitely respond more readily to an SMS message – it’s very powerful. We also find it very useful that the messages can be automatically saved as a record in JobReady as evidence of communication.”
eLearning Manager, AIPT
SMS is a particularly effective communication channel for students as 95% of 18-29 year olds say they use the text messaging feature on their phones, and these users send or receive an average of 88 text messages on a normal day.
Staff at AIPT use SMS when a student cannot be reached by phone—that is, if the student does not pick up the phone, and there is no option to leave a voicemail.
Another example where SMS are commonly used is as a way to follow up emails sent or phone calls made. “For example, a Student Support Officer may book a Coaching Session time with a student,” said Jan. “They will then follow that contact up with an SMS for confirmation and as a reminder.”
Studies have proven that implementing a proactive SMS confirmation/reminder program can significantly reduce the instance of missed appointments, and help improve on time appointment attendance.
SMS leads to strong results and performance
Over the past few years AIPT has enjoyed strong business performance with an increase in student graduation and assessment submission rates. “SMS has really supported our business growth through assisting with customer service levels.”
“Our students definitely respond more readily to an SMS message – it’s very powerful. We also find it very useful that the messages can be automatically saved as a record in JobReady as evidence of communication.”
AIPT is achieving strong results in using the SMS system as a follow up tool for communication with students, as well as using this as a tool to reach students they could not contact by phone. Jan said, “I certainly can say that using SMS has saved us time in terms of following up with students.”
Studies have found that students prefer to communicate via text and that they tend to respond better and faster to text messages because it is already their dominant means of communication.
Jan said, “We find that SMS is a particularly effective communication channel when we need to follow something up with students, or to get information to them quickly,” said Jan. “Although if we type the message too quickly, mistakes can get made, and so one future improvement we’d love to see is an auto spelling and grammar check!”
“Overall we are very happy with our SMS system with MessageMedia and intend to continue using this SMS Gateway that integrates so well with our JobReady Student Management System,” concluded Jan.
MessageMedia is Australia's largest business mobile messaging service provider, and a leading player globally with significant market share in the U.S., U.K. and New Zealand. Through its reliable and innovative IT solutions and award-winning customer service, MessageMedia helps businesses of all sizes deliver business efficiencies, improve customer engagement and increase revenue via the power of mobile messaging. MessageMedia provides a comprehensive range of mobile messaging solutions and consulting for businesses across almost every industry, including: alerts and notifications; appointment reminders; billing and payments; marketing; staff and rostering.