San Francisco Conservatory Case Study

Make Payment Collection a Non-Issue



San Francisco Conservatory of Music is a professional music school dedicated to preparing its students for a lifetime of achievement and success. There are approximately 300 students in the Pre-College and Adult Extension divisions, two separate programs that are operated, structured and priced completely differently.

In 2012, when it came time to upgrade from an antiquated system that was not user-friendly, online or capable of automated processes, they needed a solution flexible enough to manage both programs.

Customization Brings Efficiency

San Francisco Conservatory of Music found that ACTIVE Net worked for their Adult Extension offerings but a custom set-up was needed for their pre-college admissions program. Subsequently, they decided to completely renovate their business model so that customers in the Pre-College would pay upfront tuition and the conservatory would assign classes, rather than a la carte course selection and pricing.

To make the switch, the team agreed to alter some aspects of their program structure to better fit the software, a decision they have not regretted. The result: a chaotic process was streamlined.

Thanks to increased efficiency on the customer side, transitioning participants was an easy process. Back-office operations were simplified through online self-serve options such as user profiles, registration and application.

100% Payment, Automatically

Having previously spent 40% of their time managing and collecting payments, the conservatory staff believes the payment collection feature of ACTIVE Net is its strongest feature:

  • Time spent on payment collection was cut in half
  • Since implementing ACTIVE Net, late or incomplete payments comprise less than 10% of registered students, which takes minimal staff time to resolve
  • Staff gains real-time visibility into registration and payment status

In 2011, prior to implementation, the business office presented the Director a long list of non-paying accounts to collect, totaling $100,000. This kind of list no longer exists.

Maximizing Staff Hours

Registration and payment are now done online. Faculty and parents can use the 24/7 online site to get up to speed any time, night or day. The three employees in the department now have time to devote to other activities.

Other benefits the staff realizes include:

  • Improved class management and teacher visibility
  • More comprehensive view of students
  • A comprehensive departmental review report (Revenue and Registration) based on academic year
  • Facilities module attaches room numbers to schedules, eliminating some questions and confusion
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