The private educational institutes and agencies have come together to form a World University. The university is completely online that provides the lecturers to provide learning sessions from any of the campuses in the world through online mediums and portals. The interactions among the staff members and with the students are completely online. Also, the university would allow the students to choose the country they wish to graduate from.
The university has also decided to launch a customer loyalty scheme called StudyTogether. As per this scheme, a student will be rewarded if he/she introduces another student with fee credit as per the course that is selected. E-book and laptop purchases will also be available online and the enrolled students will be provided with pre-configured laptops. The payment for non-refundable fees will be done either by credit card or PayPal. The document recommends two business processes/solutions applicable to the model and also discusses the role of social media.
Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) Solutions
Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) is a business process software solution that allows a business unit to integrate all the back-end functions and operations to achieve the business goals and objectives.
The business model of World University and StudyTogether loyalty scheme will take several benefits from the ERP solutions. There will be a number of back-end methods and technologies that will be involved in the proposed business model, such as student registration and enrolment system, course management system, faculty management system, collaboration & integration tools, and many more. These methods will be easily combined together to allow the World University to achieve the aims (Rouhani & Mehri, 2018).
Some of the benefits that the ERP processes and solutions that will be associated with the proposed model are as listed below:
- There will be a lot of data associated with the World University. The data from all the different campuses and universities involved in terms of the details of the students, course details, information on the staff members, training needs, etc. will be involved. ERP solutions will easily organize and manage such huge data sets to avoid the situations, such as data loss, data replication, and data leakage.
- Security and privacy of the data sets is another significant aspect that will be covered with the involvement of the ERP solutions. These solutions will capture automated backup of the data sets to preserve the information at all times (Kadir, Ismail & Yatin, 2015).
- The administration processes, such as collection of fee, management of the enrolment lists, mapping of the students and courses, mapping of the staff member and courses, declaration & management of the result sheets, etc. will be easy to implement using the ERP systems.
- The overall management process will also become quicker, more accurate, and faster with the aid of ERP solutions.
The management and administration will also earn several benefits with the use and implementation of the ERP solutions. The communication channel between the entities involved, such as students, faculty, and administration will be effective. There will also be zero redundancy in the records associated with the system. With the automation and integration of the back-end operations, dynamic management will be possible. The overall system will be scalable that will fit in with the requirements of the university. The number of students being enrolled in the wide ranges of courses offered may vary from time to time. Also, the faculty members involved with the online interactions and the availability of these members will also vary. The dynamic management on the basis of the real-time information will be made possible with the ERP solutions. These solutions will also provide microscopic and macroscopic views which would allow the development of a cost-effective solution with minimal software requirements. The central data repository will be used for the storage of the data and information sets for easier and secure data access. The turnaround time for the system processes will be low and the automated reports will also be extracted from the system (Chou & Chang, 2008).
The students and faculty members will also acquire numerous benefits with the use and involvement of ERP processes and solutions in the system. The students will be able to access all of the required information, such as marks, attendance records, course materials, and schedule & timetable from a single place. The organization of the information sets by the faculty members and computerized management will be made possible with the use of ERP solutions.
Business Intelligence Processes
Business Intelligence is a concept that involves numerous technologies and methods for the automated data analysis and storage of the information sets to obtain the past, present, and future data views for enhancement of the efficiency of the business operations.
Business Intelligence is an umbrella that includes various technologies and concepts. Three of these processes that would be applicable in this case would be data analytics, data warehousing, and data mining.
Data analysis will allow the following functionalities and operations to take place and will offer several benefits to the World University and its business model.
- Clustering and segmentation of information will be made possible with the application of data analytics processes. These functions will involve the division of huge data sets in smaller groups on the basis of the data properties and attributes. The similarities and patterns on these smaller groups will then be identified for the execution of the business operations. For instance, the student information will be clustered and segmented on the basis of the country & university selected along with the desired course. The offering and enrolment processes will be carried out accordingly (Balachandran & Prasad, 2017).
- Classification is another operation that will be possible to be carried out on the data sets that will group the data sets in the classes on the basis of certain attributes. The analytics results may be used to identify the students and the faculty members to map them with the courses and to identify the availability of these entities.
- Regression is one of the processes under data analytics that may be used to find out the relationship between the dependent and independent variables to target specific business operations. For instance, the dependent variable in this case may be course timings and independent variables will be availability of the faculty member. The learning sessions will be developed only on the basis of the results of the relationship between these variables.
- The requirements and expectations of the students and all the other entities associated with the World University may vary with time and may depend upon several factors, such as demand of a particular course in the market, employment opportunities, historical data on the career growth in a particular course, and likewise. The enrolment processes and the number of enrolments in a particular course will vary on the basis of this information. Data analysis will allow the identification and highlighting of these data patterns and trends (Ram, Zhang & Koronios, 2016).
Enhanced business management intelligence will be made possible with the integration of data warehousing processes and methods. There will be a number of decisions that the administration and management of the World University will be required to take. These decisions will include the scheduling of the learning sessions, conduction of the performance evaluation methods, interaction processes with the students and faculty members, strategic plans, and likewise. Data warehousing will allow decision-making processes to be easier and automated on the basis of all the data and information sets associated with the university. The primary focus of the development and integration of the data warehousing systems is to enhance the speed of data retrieval (Watson, Goodhue & Wixom, 2002). As a result, the speed and accuracy of query performance and system performance will be enhanced. The system load will be evenly distributed across the entire technical infrastructure. There will be different data sources involved in this system. For instance, data will be collected from different universities and campuses, market data, etc. These disparate data sources will be combined and brought together on a common platform for advanced data analytics. The data quality and consistency along with the historical intelligence will also be made possible with the use of data warehousing (Alhyasat & Al-Dalahmeh, 2013).
Data mining is one of the significant concepts that come under Business Intelligence. It is solution that allows processing, storing, and analysing of the data and information sets. Cluster detection is one of the primary operations and processes that will be carried out using data mining. The patterns involved with student preferences and learning cycles will be obtained with the implementation of this technology. Anomaly detection will also be implemented and applied on the data sets to find out the abnormalities in the data sets. As a result, the student satisfaction levels will be enhanced (Bone & Houck, 2017).
Role of Social Media
Social media is being increasingly used in the professional and personal communications and interaction processes along with numerous other business operations.
The proposed business model of an online World University and StudyTogether loyalty scheme will also benefit with the use and involvement of the social media channels.
As per the StudyTogether loyalty scheme, the students will be rewarded if they succeed in getting another student enrolled in any of the courses. The students may use the social media channels, such as Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, etc. to promote the scheme and to inform their respective contacts about the same. There are various public groups and forums that have been developed on these social media channels and the same may be utilized to inform the public about the scheme. As a result, the student may receive the request from a friend or another student aspiring to join the university in any of the courses offered (Tess, 2013).
There are a lot of information and data sets that are available on the social media channels. For instance, the other universities continue to post about the specific courses and their demand among the students. There is also information available on the demands and preferences of the students on specific courses. Such information sets can be easily acquired from the social media channels and may be analysed with the application of the data analytics tools (Neier & Zayer, 2015). The information on the preferences and demands of the students will be obtained. Also, there may be updates that may be required to be implemented on the learning materials and course information. Such modifications will be done using the analytics results.
The business model is entirely based on the online interactions and communication channels. The interaction between the students and the faculty member will also be carried out using online mediums only. Social media and networks may be used for the enhancement of the frequency of these interactions. The students may request the faculty members to share course information and learning sessions apart from the ones available on the university portal on the social media channels. The faculty members may also come up with the latest information regarding any specific course and may update the same on their respective social media channels so that the learning level of the students may be enhanced (Hrastinski & Dennen, 2012).
The establishment of World University of such a kind is a novel approach that has not been established before. The introduction of web-based platforms, cloud computing, and other latest technologies have allowed the universities and education institutions to offer distance and online learning courses to the students. However, the development of a university that is completely online and also provides an opportunity to enrol in a course from any of the other university in the world has not been done before. The idea will take some time to be registered in the minds of the students and their guardians. Social media channels may be used for the marketing and advertising purposes for the university along with the StudyTogether scheme being launched by it. The university administration may utilize the social media channels and may also publish blogs to explain the students and guardians about the several benefits that may be offered with the success of such a concept at a global level. The quality and effectiveness of the global learning levels may also be enhanced as an outcome (Marchand, Hennig-Thurau & Flemming, 2018).
The establishment of an online university offering varied courses at a global level with the use of concepts and solutions, such as ERP solutions, Business Intelligence processes, and social media will involve certain security concerns. There will be probability of the occurrence of security risks and attacks, such as exposure of the sensitive and confidential information and data sets adversely impacting the availability, confidentiality, and integrity of the data sets.
It would be essential to implement advanced security protocols and concepts through the systems and applications for information security and data protection. The measures, such as advanced access control, multi-fold authentication, encryption of the data sets, and anti-malware tools may be used for ensuring the security.
The business model of World University and StudyTogether loyalty scheme will take several benefits from the ERP solutions. The communication channel between the entities involved, such as students, faculty, and administration will be effective. There will also be zero redundancy in the records associated with the system. Business Intelligence processes as data analytics, data warehousing, and data mining will also be effective in this case. Data warehousing will allow decision-making processes to be easier and automated on the basis of all the data and information sets associated with the university. Cluster detection is one of the primary operations and processes that will be carried out using data mining. Social media and networks may be used for the enhancement of the frequency of the online interactions and communications. Social media channels may be used for the marketing and advertising purposes for the university along with the StudyTogether scheme being launched by it.
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