Online program management alternatives

Limitations of a revenue-share model

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When originally introduced, the online program management (OPM) revenue-share model allowed colleges and universities to enter the arena of online education without the risk of upfront investment.

Now, impending regulatory decisions and big players exiting the space have schools rethinking the sustainability of the OPM relationship. It’s time to consider whether a flexible, fee-for-service partnership is a better long-term fit for growing and scaling online programs.

bullet pointOPMs control the data

In revenue-share contracts, an OPM company has no incentive to share its strategies and data (especially in marketing and admissions). Without this visibility, schools may not know which tactics are driving performance.

The answer: In a fixed-fee service model, schools own the data and insights into what works and what it takes to launch their online programs and grow enrollments.

bullet pointStunted in-house capabilities

Fully outsourced OPM alternatives in higher ed keep in-house talent from gaining the skills and experience needed to drive enrollment growth in today’s competitive market.

The answer: Institutions that develop skills and infrastructure in-house are able to keep innovating and evolving.

bullet pointLimited program offerings

OPMs typically focus on the programmatic offerings with the highest profit margin and are highly selective in what they are willing to support. Their choices may not align with your institution’s mission or needs.

The answer: In a partner relationship, a school’s vision, market demand, academic strengths, and competition all contribute to programming decisions.