How instant phone power cleared the way to a better Keele experience
Thousands of anxious young men and women were able to get straight through to helpful student advisers on Clearing Day - thanks to a bit of lateral thinking by Keele University.
Clearing is the national service overseen by the admissions service UCAS which matches up students with spare places. Every year, enquiries peak in a frenzy of phone calls, engaged lines and urgent conversations as the advisers help to match callers' qualifications and aspirations with suitable degree courses.
Last minute changes from UCAS meant there was a need for Keele staff to call some applicants and therefore Keele sourced 25 additional telephone lines at Internet Central (IC), who are based on the Science Park.
"We knew that IC had refurbished and updated its Workplace Recovery Suite which has access to 25 telephone lines and computers", said John White, Deputy Director in the Finance and Information Technology Directorate: "As the examination results were coming out, we would need more phone capacity so why don't we put the two things together?"
"It was a wonderful day", said IC Sales Director Adam Hardman: "The workplace recovery suite was humming with activity, calls were being made , the student advisers were calling up course details on the screens and, where appropriate, patching calls through to tutors.
"We keep the suite in a state of readiness for clients who have had a disaster, such as a fire for example, and we have never actually seen it working flat out so this was a really good experience for us, too".
"It could not have gone better", added a Keele University spokesperson: "We were able to work alongside one of our neighbours on the campus to deliver probably one of the best clearing services in the UK.
"We had a good experience with IC and will be looking to work closely with them on projects in the future".
- Keele University has been ranked second overall for Student Satisfaction and third for Teaching Quality in the Times and Sunday Times University League Tables for 2016.