What to Say When You Need Them To Pay

January 3, 2024

Have you noticed that the tactics you’ve employed to communicate with students about their tuition and billing just don’t quite work as well as they used to? Considering the seismic shift in how college students consume information and prefer to be communicated with, it’s not surprising that the tried-and-true methods are a little less effective these days. 

Students need better communication about billing

In 2023, we surveyed post-secondary degree-seeking students about their student financial experience at their institutions. One of the key takeaways from the research is that inability to pay is not the only cause of student tuition non-payment and, in some cases, student attrition: practices around communication of need-to-know information are key drives in students paying late. Consider these statistics:

  • Almost 2 out of 4 students who have paid late cited reasons other than being unable to pay
  • 58% of students who have paid late cite a confusing bill
  • 51% believe they were billed incorrectly 
  • 57% of student surveyed believe communications from their school were ineffective

How to drive better payment and student outcomes: recommendations based on experience with 50+ partners

The implications of our research are clear: colleges and universities have a lot to gain (and many headaches that would be solved) by improving how they communicate with students and upgrading their billing practices:

  • 46% of students would be more likely to engage if communication were more clear
  • 44% want a more mobile-friendly billing portal
  • 77% prefer communication via email and 52% by text

To help you and other student financial services leaders, we put together a comprehensive set of recommendations based on our experience of driving better outcomes for 50+ partners. In this free guide, we cover:

  • Why communication is a qualitative, not quantitative challenge
  • How going beyond email is key
  • The importance of personalization
  • Why clustering messaging around dates works

Download our free report and take action today to drive better student tuition payment outcomes.

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