Not answering the phone could be costing your ECEC business thousands

by Freya Lucas

March 10, 2020

Everyone has had a common, unpleasant experience – you want a question answered, you want to make an appointment, but no one will pick up the phone. You emailed a week ago, and still no response. 

 

While it’s comforting to know people are bonded by their shared frustrations, those moments could be costing an early childhood education and care business thousands of dollars in lost opportunities. 

 

According to a recent study by the Harvard Business Review, 27 per cent of digital leads are never contacted at all – that’s 27 per cent of enquiring families, who might have wanted full time care for their family who became a ‘lost opportunity’ before they even became an opportunity!  

 

With the average enrolment equating to $12,558 per year – each unanswered enquiry or phone call can cost providers thousands of dollars in revenue.

 

When you also factor in the cost of marketing and advertising resources which are going to waste when enquiries go unanswered, the true cost becomes much higher. 

 

Reflections such as these were the motivation for an innovative solution, Enrolment Hub, led by Jane Monaghan. 

 

“We wanted to be able to utilise our years of experience refining the family enrolment journey to transform the enrolments process for childcare providers both big and small” she explained. 

 

Many early learning providers approach Enrolment Hub when they realise their phone and website enquiries aren’t being answered, Ms Monaghan continued. 

 

“When we then explain the actual financial cost of each unanswered enquiry and the fact that Inbound calls convert 10-15 times higher than web leads, the numbers can be quite shocking and devastating.”

 

Tracey Daniel, Director at Enrolment Hub, outlined the ‘why’ behind missing enquiries. “It’s not that Service Managers lack drive, commitment, or a sense of wanting to grow their business.”

 

Oftentimes, she said “Service Managers are pulled in more directions than ever before due to increasing regulations and requirements on their time – it’s no wonder that responding to enquiries, pushing service tours, driving loyalty and confirming new enrolments generally takes a back seat.”

 

Taking back control

The solution to addressing this issue starts with defining your customer journey and creating a holistic relationship management strategy – offering a personalised approach to each family’s enrolment journey and cultivating loyalty in a service, so they have no other choice than to choose your service over your competitors.

 

Partnering with a solutions provider, such as Enrolment Hub, may well be the answer, Ms Monaghan said. 

 

“Using a service like Enrolment Hub can alleviate administration pressures from Service Managers and allow them to do what they do best – inspire their team, care for children and ensure the smooth running of the service” she added.

 

More than simply relieving a Service Manager of a burdensome task, changing the way enrolments and enquiries are processed could prove to be very lucrative for bottom line results. 

 

According to the Xplor Annual Childcare Report, services who use Administrators’ that have been working in the childcare sector for 20 years or more, report 8 per cent higher occupancy rates than those with ten years of experience or less.

 

The Enrolment Hub team have a collective 200 years+ of sector experience in childcare enrolments, making them a powerful enrolment boosting force (without the complexity of hiring and managing your own team). They will:

  • Answer every call and enquiry received for your Service – no call will ever go unanswered
  • Book all Service tours and follow up with each family
  • Reduce the administration burden on Service Managers, giving them more time to focus on the service and team
  • Strategically transition children throughout the year to accommodate waitlisted families – maximising your occupancy across the year
  • Actively market your Service to the waitlist and continue to be in contact until they are ready to enrol
  • Provide comprehensive weekly reporting on enquiries, tours, occupancy, lost opportunities, phone statistics and much more to allow you to make the right decisions for your business

 

“As sector oversupply continues to be an issue, it’s time to look ahead and define the processes and structure that will enable childcare businesses to thrive in an increasingly competitive sector” Ms Monaghan said in closing. 

 

Jane Monaghan can be reached via email at  janem@enrolmenthub.com. More information about Enrolment Hub is available on their website, here.

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