Oakland Community College Essay, Research Paper
Marketing Case Study
Oakland Community College
Oakland community college is the largest institution of its type in Michigan. It offers degrees and certificates in more than 90 career fields and university transfer degrees in business, science and liberal arts. It is community based and publicly funded institution. It has open admissions policy; student centered instruction and flexible curricula.
Organizations increasingly have to be market-driven and customer focused to compete effectively in the future. The major key to success for OCC is understanding and meeting the needs of the local market. The needs of the local market are (a) easier and faster registration process; (b) adult community education- courses that will be useful for local business operations; (c) easier access to library materials; (d) easier access to purchase books; (e) accessible days and times for offered courses. Some of these needs are addressed by OCC but need improvement or expansion and others need to be addressed. OCC can also improve marketing by continuous innovation. Few suggestions include encouraging sports activities for students, allowing students to review their teachers in timely manner, improving their courses to accommodate curricula which are pre-requisites for universities and advertising the same in local universities.
Creating Customer Focus throughout Business
Registration in OCC is by telephone or by person. ‘By person’ is very taxing for working individuals who are unable to register on time due to time restraints. ‘By telephone’ is easier but disadvantage for individuals who are trying to get into courses which fill up faster than the others and their last names begin with alphabets which fall during later times of the day. Making it accessible via Internet can make registration easier and faster. Most population now have access to the net either at home or at work and would be able to register for chosen classes earlier.
The bookstore should be open for longer hours and for few hours during the weekend for easier access for students attending evening classes for more sales of books. Also, an online store would help increase sales of books as it is readily accessible for the students. Online library connection to articles and journals available in OCC library or a virtual library would help the students do research on their with the click of a button at their own convenience and improve the standards of learning at OCC.
Adult community education is an important aspect for attracting large number of customers towards OCC. The needs of the target market should be assessed through subjective surveys regarding the communities wants and interests and new courses should be added to the curriculum. Also, an objective survey of local businesses should be done to know their needs and their knowledge regarding present growing technology. Information should be given on how their staff can benefit from courses at OCC to keep up-to-date with technology, which can be utilized to augment their business.
Increase in the number of courses offered in 71/2 weeks would help attract the populations who are interested in crash courses and utilize the acquired knowledge into applications in businesses. For example, if an organization wants to train their employees in a certain application, they can train only 15 employees in 15 weeks but if the course lasts for 71/2 weeks, 30 employees can be trained in 15 weeks.
OCC should conduct a survey on days and times of classes most preferred by individuals living in the surrounding areas. This can help OCC conclude whether it would be at an advantage to start weekend classes. A trial session can be held by offering weekend classes at one of the campuses for a semester and observe the response of the market.
Risk taking, innovation and proactive approach towards marketing is important to keep up with the needs of the market and increase profitability.
Nowadays, sports has become part of life for majority of population, whether it is played at high school level or state level. Increasing sports activities and enabling students to compete amongst OCC branches will help lure students with such inclination.
OCC can also attract students by increasing the mandated level of study for lecturers thereby proving the quality of education provided. A periodic feedback from the students will help in enhancing the quality of education.
OCC can conduct periodic counseling with relevant universities and institutions and upgrade their courses accordingly which in-turn will attract transfer students. OCC can also conduct seminars and issue brochures in regular intervals to local universities and institutions and provide detailed information about the courses offered so that OCC would be the primary choice in their recommendation for students who seek community colleges as an option.
The integrated and coordinated efforts and focus on long-term success will help OCC to satisfy customer needs. OCC can advertise, promote and research in many of the above mentioned ways to determine and improve various ways to attract variety of students for enrollment. Providing what consumers need at an increasingly lower prices to establish long-term customer relationships in a profitable manner wherever these customers may be in the world, often requires working with other organizations, employing new technologies in new and different ways, and being sensitive to social and ethical considerations. The combination of good teaching and easy accessibility gives customers real value.