Here are the Top Trends for 2013 in the field of lifelong learning and continuing education!
1. Structure accountability.
The restructuring of staff continues, and the new emphasis is now on operating systems and accountability. Many programs have restructured staff positions using the LERN Staffing Model, now they are drilling down to operations and job position accountability.
2. Managers to visionaries.
Top execs of programs are moving from being managers to being more visionary, as long term strategic planning, adjusting to a new external environment, and new growth markets are now top priorities. They are also trying to get out of the office close to 50% of their time.
3. Budgeting for new product development.
The most successful programs are now creating a new budget line for new product development and allocating up to $100,000 a year for new product development. Some programs are also creating new positions just devoted to new product research, positions in addition to and separate from programmers.
4. Information sessions.
More organizations are providing free information sessions to promote their larger and higher dollar programs.
5. New advisers for students.
Some continuing education organizations are developing greater services and even positions to serve students, including student advisers, counselors, and even job placement, all new positions to the field of continuing education.
6. More recruiters and sales people.
For high dollar programs, there is now documented evidence on the ROI to create recruitment and sales positions specific to a particular high dollar program or offering.
7. Turning point in software battles.
Programs in institutions have been arguing for software specific to continuing education and lifelong learning for a number of years now, but now more programs are starting to win the argument and get the software they need.
8. More credit programming.
More c.e. units are doing and exploring credit programming, and LERN is leading the way with four top practitioners conducting both preconference and four day institutes on the hot topic.
9. More money for marketing.
Usually a category where continuing education and lifelong learning organizations are under spending, some are investing more money in marketing. Promotion expenditures have always seen a big payback and ROI with income, but more programmers are starting to see promotion as an investment rather than cost now, and reaping the benefits in increased enrollments and income.