College and universities are unique, occupying worlds unto themselves.
As a function of higher education institutions’ idiosyncrasies, even their queueing patterns have unique traffic patterns that call for specific solutions.
However, with appropriate attention to factors like smart queueing and higher adoption of technology for online-friendly campuses, these institutions can provide students with a smoother overall experience.
NEMO-Q North American Region Sales Consultant Erik Berg recently sat down for the Building Management podcast to share his insights regarding these unique queueing challenges.
How Campus Queueing Needs Differ
Some institutions, like government offices, are very black-and-white – they’re coldly efficient, first-come, first-served and largely uniform.
That’s not the case for higher education institutions.
Colleges and universities can differ from this model, a fact that’s largely driven by the very nature of the students, themselves.
Modern college-age students have grown up in a world where they’ve been inundated with technology from essentially the beginning of their lives, leading to a segment of the population that’s not only comfortable with technology, but naturally gifted in its use and inclined to seek out online-friendly solutions.
With respect to queuing, this familiarity eliminates fears and concerns related to using mobile phones, registering online, etc.
With a queueing system that takes into account this mobility and flexibility, Berg said, we provide solutions that allow students to bounce around and go from station to station without the strict structure of other institutions.
Instead of a rigid framework, NEMO-Q’s collegiate solutions allow for seamless transfer between departments, the merging of walk-in and appointment traffic, “wait anywhere” options, and more.
“They know, ‘All right, my class ends at 2 o’clock. Oh, look, there’s a spot available for 2:15, that gives me just enough time to hustle across campus and get there. … Now I can feel like I’m valued as a student,” Berg said.
NEMO-Q solutions have been implemented at campuses for Michigan State, Harvard University, Texas Tech University, the University of Texas at Arlington, Georgia State, the University of North Florida, the University of Southern California and more.
The Benefits of Campus Queueing Solutions
While student-focused and adaptable queueing solutions certainly benefit the students in terms of time spent, they also produce positive results for the campus as a whole.
When queueing solutions are put in place, campuses notice reduced labor expenses and increased employee efficiency from the additional layer of organization, reduced student abandons and greater overall student satisfaction.
Particularly in heavy traffic cases such as registration day, campuses reported major drawbacks with traditional systems that didn’t feature the “one-stop-shop” method.
NEMO-Q also provides “hundreds and hundreds” of analytical reports, helping campuses adapt to student flow and make the best use of employee time and campus resources.
Best Practices for Managing Student Queuing
Berg said there are a few best practices that will help ensure the student experience is as seamless as possible.
These include keeping lobbies as decluttered as possible, particularly with remote check-in, and, in the case of smaller institutions, not completely shying away from personal interactions.
It’s key to find a balance between elevating the student experience and gaining back-end benefits for the university, itself, particularly in data collection, overloading of services and costs.
To learn more about NEMO-Q’s queueing solutions, visit nemo-q.com/queuing-management/.