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Smart Application Processes with No Code Portals for Higher Education

Are you looking to streamline your application process for academic programs in Salesforce? If so, this article is for you!

Keep reading to explore a use case from Titan, where we helped a client in the education industry optimize its student application process for Salesforce.

If you prefer to watch the video on higher education solutions, check it out below. Amit Midha demonstrates how easy it is to build a portal for smooth-running application processes using Titan. 

The Challenge

A college wanted to renew the application process they had in place. The application process was slow for students and administrators alike as there was a lot of paperwork to submit and review. The college needed a multifunctional Salesforce solution to make faster turnaround times when reviewing and approving applications.

The Use Case

The college approached Titan as they knew the platform worked well with Salesforce using no code. The college explained its manual application process for students and administrators, which included the following time-consuming tasks:

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Students had to fill out a physical form and drop it off at the college.
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Application forms had to be physically filed by the college.
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Administrators had to manually enter the personal student data from the application form into Salesforce.
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The students had to call, email, or visit administrators in person to find out the status of their application.
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Once an application had been reviewed, administrators had to contact students with the feedback.
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Students had to visit the college each time they needed to make a payment for their application.
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The college had to keep cash on campus to give change to students making a payment.
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The administrators had to track the physical payments with receipts.

You can see from these points that the application process was stressful for students and administrators. But that’s the old way of doing things.

The Solution

When the college turned to Titan, they got so much more than they originally wanted. The students could sign up for programs using a form in a portal. The data is extracted from the form, pushed to Salesforce, and created as a contact. 

Then, the students could log into the Titan portal and view all their applications. Some applications can be submitted, some could be in process, or some could even be labeled with a rejected status. Students are able to track all of these application statuses in a neat dashboard.

If students continued with a specific application, Titan begins to load all their information into the portal from Salesforce, such as:

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Personal Information
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Contact Details
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Legal Addresses

Additionally, if students wish to update these details, they can easily do so.

Moving on, Titan provided a work experience section. These are line items created under the Affiliation record in Salesforce. Students were now able to add multiple work experiences, or they could remove them if they wished to do so.

Next up is references. Students can add up to two references. They can also add as many as they like, but right now, the college has only requested two references.

With the portal, students can also add their previous education history. This functionality follows the same premise as work experience: multiple records are created as an affiliation record type called education history. 

Next up are tests and designations! And again, this follows the same route. With Titan, students are able to create multiple entries and push them to Salesforce. These entries are stored in Salesforce and can be read back in real-time.

As a bonus, Titan also gave the college a way for students and educators to share work. For example, if students have an essay to submit, they can enter their work into a rich text field, which then gets pushed to Salesforce. Educators can view and grade these essays conveniently. The educator can also set the maximum or minimum number of characters that the essay needs to supply.

Supplementing essays, Titan provided a file upload capability, so any file from any process can be uploaded and will go against the record in Salesforce.

And back to the final part of the application process. The portal supported payment integration using Stripe. Students are able to pay directly for an application online, which completes the application process. All information is written back to Salesforce, including the Stripe data.

Titan essentially provided the college with an updated process integrated into a portal with a range of Salesforce functionality.

Technical Details

How does it all work? Titan created a portal using drag-and-drop functionality that syncs data to Salesforce. The portal is versatile and works with multiple Salesforce records and payment integrations.

When students sign up to apply to the college, they add their details to a signup form. The form creates a record while Titan checks the email address supplied by the student against Salesforce. If the student’s details are in Salesforce, Titan will email them a two-factor authorization code.

Sign Up Form
Sign Up Form

Meanwhile, the college administrator can see a contact created in Salesforce in real time.

Now, back to the student. They can copy the two-factor authorization code from their email and paste it into the portal to log in.

When logged in, students can view their applications under the dashboard. To create a new application, the student chooses a program and entry term presented by Salesforce via a dynamic pick list. 

After selecting a program, an application is created inside Salesforce. The administrator can now see the applicant’s selected program term and the academic program. At this point, the administrator can upload a photo via a rich text field in Salesforce under the applicant’s contact section.

On the applicant’s side, their photo has been added to the portal’s Personal Info section. From here, the student can update their personal data. All collaborative edits will be updated in Salesforce for administrators and educators to view. 

The next part of the portal allowed students to add work experiences. This data is pushed to Salesforce in real-time, and the results are returned to the portal. 

Adding Work Experience to the Portal
Adding Work Experience to the Portal

Titan ensured that the data was included in the Salesforce-integrated portal for the reference solution. To create these references, the student adds them to the portal, and then Titan syncs the data to Salesforce. 

Adding References to the Portal
Adding References to the Portal

Up until now, in the application process, an administrator can see a profile built in Salesforce with the following:

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Personal Details
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Program Registrations
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Affiliation Records
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Candidate References

The student continues to add their education history, test results, and professional designations to the portal, which will be reflected in Salesforce as record types.

Adding Professional Designations to the Portal
Adding Professional Designations to the Portal

This way, Titan created a portal that gathered all student data, including affiliations and references, and correctly added them to Salesforce. 

But what about the bonus functionality of submitting essays to educators? It is very cool. It gives students a way to upload their work conveniently. They no longer need to travel to the campus to submit an essay on time, which could be tragic if they miss the deadline due to traffic delays. Also, administrators do not need to wait on campus to collect essays. 

All that is needed now is for students to upload an essay from any location with an internet connection. Then, Titan will send the essay to Salesforce.

Adding an Essay to the Portal
Adding an Essay to the Portal

Students can upload a second essay if they accidentally upload an incorrect version. In Salesforce, the educator will see two versions of the essay, which they can compare if they want to. 

Titan enabled the portal to collect documents under the Supplemental Items section. Students can also view the material they submitted. This is important if they have made a mistake and must delete the uploaded documents from the portal. Administrators can find these supplementary documents uploaded in Salesforce under the File sections.

Uploading Documents to the Portal
Uploading Documents to the Portal

The final part of the portal is the payment integration that links to Stripe. It lets the student enter their payment data into the portal, and when they click Submit, the data is pushed to Salesforce and Stripe. With a successful payment, the application status will update to “submitted” in Salesforce.

Entering Payment Data into the Portal
Entering Payment Data into the Portal

Results

Titan gave the college a full, multifunctional solution for their application process. With the new process, the college gained front and back-end functionality with their Salesforce-integrated portal to collect many different record types, such as:

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Work History
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Education History
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Tests
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References
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Essays
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File Uploads

Titan streamlined the entire application process for the college and gave them a chance to reduce administrative delays, sync data automatically to Salesforce, and improve additional processes:

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Students can apply for programs online.
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Administrators can track and approve applications online.
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Existing students can upload essays to the portal on time.

Motivated to Improve Processes in Higher Education?

Thank you for reading our article and watching our video. We hope you managed to take some value away from it. 

We covered a use case that explored a portal designed with no code for a college. The portal integrated directly into Salesforce to streamline the college’s application process for students, administrators, and educators. Thanks to Titan’s bi-directional data flow functionality with Salesforce and web projects, the college was able to eliminate manual data entries, include a payment method for students, and automate the application process from start to finish.

If you liked the content and want a Salesforce solution for your institution, please contact us through one of the social media links below. 

We look forward to working with you in the future!

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Disclaimer: The comparisons listed in this article are based on information provided by the companies online and online reviews from users. If you found a mistake, please contact us.

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