Enrollment Management Competencies

In addition to enrollment management-specific competencies, AACRAO ensured that a common set of core competencies was developed that are applicable to all professionals in higher education. You can check out the core competencies here. Otherwise, continue scrolling to view the enrollment management-specific sets.

Note that due to differing institutional structures, you may find that specific proficiencies are described under a a different AACRAO professional grouping than is reflected by the organizational chart and duties and responsibilities in your specific office. Please reference the related AACRAO professions of Admissions, Records & Academic Services, and International Education (coming soon) for further information.  If you cannot find a competency that you are looking for and would like to make a suggestion for a future version, contact us. 


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Assessment

Functional Description: Working collaboratively with appropriate institutional partners, develop, articulate and implement a comprehensive, data-driven process to assess progress towards the institution’s enrollment management plan.

Content knowledge requirements: Understanding and application of SEM core concepts, models, and theories; using quantitative and qualitative data to effectively assess all aspects of a comprehensive SEM plan, including assessment of recruitment and retention infrastructure and progress towards institutional SEM goals.

Skill requirements: Ability to incorporate assessment activities as a regular part of daily practice; recognize the regulatory or legal influences which may guide programs and services supporting progress towards SEM goals; ability to analyze and understand the interconnectedness of SEM systems, strategies and tactics; employ assessment measures that ensure comprehensive and accurate data collection; understanding of both quantitative and qualitative assessment methodologies.

Ethical requirements: Willingness to honestly examine SEM infrastructure, identifying areas of excellence as well as areas for improvement; honest interpretation of data as a means of evaluating progress towards SEM goals; willingness to actively solicit and incorporate feedback from SEM stakeholders into assessment summaries.

Expertise Levels

Entry level: Assessment practices used to evaluate individual programs and events.

Intermediate level: Assessment practices used to evaluate individual programs and events, using results to connect progress to larger SEM goals. Actively uses results to inform some elements of the institution’s SEM plan, infrastructures, strategies or tactics.

Expert level: Assessment practices holistically embedded as a routine part of all SEM activities as well as connecting those activities to a larger assessment of progress towards SEM goals; regularly reports progress with institutional leadership and key stakeholders. Actively uses results to inform all aspects of the institution’s SEM infrastructures, strategies or tactics and as a means of more actively pursuing achievement of SEM goals.

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Determining Enrollment Mix

Functional Description: Partner with academic affairs to determine optimum enrollment mix for institutional academic programs, branch campuses, and online programs, as well as student enrollment based on demographics such as geographic diversity, socio-economic, racial/ethnic diversity, and other considerations.

Content knowledge requirements: Requires a fundamental understanding of institutional structure, culture and mission and the ability to align the allocation of the class to these elements. Competency in communication and negotiation in working with key stakeholders and leadership to define enrollment targets. Effective use of statistical processes and interpretation, ability to use data from different sources, and effectively use data to inform institutional enrollment planning. Understanding of the complexities of various enrollment targets and ability to convey these complexities to institutional leaders.

Skill requirements: Ability to digest, synthesize and communicate significant amounts of enrollment data and brief leadership on the complex issues. Analytical skills necessary to understand the tradeoffs and complexities associated with determining enrollment targets.

Ethical requirements: Strict adherence to professional standards and ethical statements of associated professional organizations. Adherence to the mission and vision of the institution with regard to enrollment targets. Compliance with federal and state laws with regard to fulfillment of enrollment targets.

Expertise Levels

Entry level: General understanding of the key institutional enrollment targets and manner in which these targets are established.

Intermediate level: Ability to analyze enrollment trends, identify the complexities of competing enrollment priorities, and contribute to decisions regarding institutional enrollment mix.

Expert level: Provide leadership to engage the institution in thoughtful discussions on determining student enrollment mix, including the ability to convey and negotiate the complexities of establishing enrollment targets. Effectively use, interpret, and communicate data from a multitude of sources to inform institutional enrollment mix decisions.

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Professional Development and Contributions to the Field

Functional Description: Support professional development for one’s self and others in order to advance sound enrollment practices, foster innovation, and remain attune to issues affecting enrollment management partners. This includes presenting at state, regional, or national conferences; contributing to professional association and academic journals; serving on professional association committees and leadership teams; and collaborating with colleagues through partnerships, conference attendance, and related activities.

Content knowledge requirements: Working knowledge of professional development opportunities and resources; ability to remain current regarding trends and innovations affecting the enrollment management profession and work.

Skill requirements: Presentation and public speaking skills; strong sense of inquiry; personal initiative/ self-starter; professional and academic writing and research skills; ability to work independently and as part of a larger team; ability to provide leadership to both small and large groups and with new or existing initiatives.

Ethical requirements: Willingness to examine personal and professional development needs and actively seek opportunities to strengthen those areas; willingness to engage in opportunities outside of one’s own institution and contribute at a state, regional, or national level; willingness to engage in opportunities with individuals or teams from institution’s different than one’s own institution.

Expertise Levels

Entry level: Attends state, regional, or national professional development opportunity on a limited basis.

Intermediate level: Attends state, regional, or national professional development opportunities; occasionally seeks opportunities to participate in leadership positions and/or present at conferences; promotes professional development opportunities for staff.

Expert level: Regularly attends state, regional, or national professional development opportunities; regularly seeks opportunities to participate in leadership positions and/or present at conferences; actively engages in inter- and cross-institutional partnerships as a means of increasing professional development opportunities for one’s self and one’s staff; overtly supports staff engagement in personal and professional development activities.

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SEM Leadership

Functional Description: Develop, articulate and implement a comprehensive, data-driven strategic enrollment management plan, that includes a focus on both recruitment and retention, aligns with the institution’s strategic initiatives and ensures a strong link between student need, institution-wide priorities, and financial planning.

Content knowledge requirements: Broad understanding of higher education functions and purpose. Knowledge of strategic enrollment management core concepts and strategies. Understanding of personnel management including selection, training, and performance evaluation. Competency in budgeting and resource allocation and effective assessment of programs and services. Broad understanding of enrollment management systems, organizational structures, resources allocation, business processes, and technology.

Skill requirements: Specific skills in enterprise systems including customer relationship management, student information systems, assessment, and other student support systems. Commitment to collaboration and communication and developing relationships with internal institutional stakeholders and external constituents. Strong analytical skills including a general understanding of statistical processes and interpretation, gathering data from disparate sources, and effectively using data to inform institutional enrollment planning. Promote, facilitate, and assess the effectiveness of processes and services, using technology as appropriate to support work.

Ethical requirements: Strict adherence to professional standards and ethical statements of associated professional organizations. Adherence to the mission and vision of the institution and equitable treatment of individuals associated with the enrollment management functions. Attention to compliance with institutional policy, and state and federal law and policy.

Expertise Levels

Entry level: General awareness of the role of enrollment-related functions to meet institutional goals. Ability to apply enrollment management techniques to day-to-day job to accomplish desired outcomes of the position.

Intermediate level: Broad understanding of the role of enrollment management functions and services in the enrollment plan and to meet institutional goals related to enrollment. Direct involvement in program development and management to identify and solve enrollment-related problems. Management of budgets, student staff, or entry-level employees.

Expert level: Comprehensive understanding of the institution, the role of enrollment management in meeting the institutional goals, and the greater context of state and national barriers and culture. Engage and lead colleagues across campus to find mutually acceptable solutions that adhere to institutional policy and enhance the student success mission of the institution. Ability to identify both challenges and resources to promote ongoing improvement of enrollment management goals.

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Staffing Leadership

Functional Description: Provide leadership to enrollment personnel and departments to develop skills, strategies, and systems needed to successfully achieve enrollment management goals.

Content knowledge requirements: Broad understanding of higher education functions and purpose. Knowledge of strategic enrollment management functional areas, staffing requirements, and how these relate to achievement of institutional enrollment management goals. Understanding of personnel management including selection, training, and performance evaluation. Experience in implementation of systems, practices, and policies which enable staff to appropriately contribute towards achievement of institutional enrollment goals.

Skill requirements: Personnel selection, training, and evaluation. Strong interpersonal, coaching, communication skills; ability to develop high functioning teams; and ability to mentor both individuals and teams towards accomplishing institutional goals.

Ethical requirements: Strict adherence to professional standards and ethical statements of associated professional organizations. Observance of employment practices that support human resources professional standards. Specific understanding of the ethical and compliance requirements related to student and employee records. Attention to compliance with institutional policy, and state and federal law and policy.

Expertise Levels

Entry level: Understanding individual role in the accomplishment of job goals. Accepting direction from supervisors, learning from training and development, and applying that knowledge to the performance of the position.

Intermediate level: Selecting, training, and leading personnel in the accomplishment of functional area, divisional, and institutional goals. Beginning level understanding of how deployment of staffing and structure of organizational systems contribute towards accomplishment of enrollment management goals.

Expert level: Ability to develop staffing structures and roles in support of institutional enrollment goals; develop and support individuals and teams in their contributions to these goals; and create the systems and structures that allow staff to effectively and efficiently contribute towards goals. Developing and maintaining collaborative, team-oriented relationships that support the effective deployment of enrollment management systems.

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Technology

Functional Description: Employ technology to develop innovative, efficient, and quality enrollment management processes and services.

Content knowledge requirements: Broad understanding of emerging technologies utilized in enrollment, as well as how these technologies are implemented, developed and supported. Understanding of the differences between the cost of acquisition, deployment and ownership of technologies and the impact on budgets. Understanding of how various use of technology can impact service students and the efficiency within the enrollment units. Understanding of the interaction between various technologies as they impact the enrollment process.

Skill requirements: Ability to assess costs associated with acquiring, deploying and owning various technologies. Ability to establish priorities through understanding of the business case for technologies. Ability to understand scope, timeline, and budget of various technology projects.

Ethical requirements: Strict adherence to professional standards and ethical statements of associated professional organizations. Strict adherence to protecting student records and data integrity standards.

Expertise Levels

Entry level: Broad understanding how technologies impact enrollment processes and/or service to students.

Intermediate level: Ability to measure and articulate the impact of technologies on enrollment processes and/or service to students. Conduct analysis necessary to determine costs and potential savings associated with introduction of new technologies.

Expert level: Understanding of interaction between existing technologies within enrollment processes and their contributions in contributing to institutional enrollment management goals. Ability to prioritize and make the business case for the introduction of new technologies, including securing additional resources where necessary.

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