Applying for a scholarship can be quite chaotic for some, but it can also be an exciting endeavor with money for schooling as the reward. When applying, it’s easy to make mistakes that can instantly disqualify an applicant from the scholarship selection process.
The list goes on and on. The question is, what do you do when candidates make application mistakes? To answer this, below are five ways to handle poor application responses.
When you use SmarterSelect’s field validation feature, inaccurate/incorrect responses will warn the applicant they need to offer a different response to move forward. This automates the process of dealing with the mistake so program managers and their evaluation teams don’t have to sift through applications trying to figure out what people meant by their responses. Instead, everyone will use the same formats for questions.
A quick way to remove oneself from the scholarship selection pool is to answer questions incorrectly. However, one of the reasons people answer questions incorrectly is they don’t understand the prompt. Now, imagine you could whisper to the applicant exactly how to answer each question in the application. With SmarterSelect application management software this is easy to do.
Having an application management system that is automated will help you avoid users submitting applications and materials after the deadline. No response is needed from you. They simply won’t be able to access or submit after the deadline has passed.
There is a good chance that your scholarship has an ideal candidate in mind to receive this award. With that in mind, you should include eligibility criteria in the beginning of your application so that people who don’t qualify won’t waste their time or yours. And, by adding better qualifiers, there is a good chance they will never even stumble onto your scholarship program in the first place.
If you are starting to get a lot of bad responses and/or inaccurate applications, you could send a message to all of your applicants with explanations about where things are going wrong. You can also send your database a list of frequently asked questions and the answers to them to avoid a lot of troubleshooting and customer service. While you’re at it, send updates such as when deadlines are and what is still missing for an application to be considered “complete.”
There is a chance that you may have to simply dismiss some applications from your scholarship selection pool, and go back to the drawing board for the next round of your program. Using SmarterSelect scholarship application software, you can use a template or make tweaks to your existing application form to keep fine-tuning it to make it better for your applicants.
This may mean adding things like more qualifiers, additional field validation, extra question-level help, etc… The best part about using our software is that most of your program’s processes can be automated. From making the application available to messaging your pool of applicants, scoring multiple choice questions to filtering out GPAs - it’s never been easier to find eligible candidates for your scholarship program.