Recruitment in Russia: Vital Aspects that each provider should know


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Russia is a country of big opportunities for educational institutions all over the world due to its size, variety of cultures and traditions, and growing interest in study abroad. When entering the Russian market, what should education providers expect? What common mistakes should they avoid and how they can they effectively tackle this burgeoning market?

The Association of Russian Educational Advisors (AREA) presents research conducted among reputable agencies and foreign institutions that have experience recruiting in Russia. The research results and proposed marketing tips reveal the trends of the educational market and offer suggestions for future development.

Read our accompanying ICEF Monitor article "Mastering the Russian market: common mistakes and practical advice'' and watch the video interview with Dr Anna Ryzhova here:

For more industry news, market intelligence, research and commentary for international student recruitment please visit, subscribe for daily or weekly updates, and follow us on Twitter

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Recruitment in Russia: Vital Aspects that each provider should know

  1. 1. Association of Russian Educational Advisors Recruitment in Russia: Vital Aspects that each Provider should know Anna Ryzhova, PhD AREA Board member
  2. 2. AREA Code of Ethics - extracts MEMBERSARE OBLIGED: • Act in compliance with the RF legislation. • Care of their reputation and the reputation of the Association • Contribute to the promotion of the Association • Follow the principles of professional ethic in partner relations in the conditions of market economy with respect to the other members of the Association, clients and partners. • Continuously seek to improve the level of professional competence. • Provide the clients with comprehensive, accurate and timely information regarding the services. • Fulfill obligations to clients and partners in full. • Publish reliable information about programs in adverts, booklets, and on websites.
  3. 3. Marketing approach When you concentrate on just one approach, it works better Agent approach • Concentration on recruitment through the agents network Public approach • Direct contact with the prospective students
  4. 4. Agent approach • Defining the agents focusing on the market of the country where the educational institution is located. WHERETO LOOK FOR? Workshops, organized with the participation of the professional agents (i.e. ICEF), as well as the activities of theTrade Missions in Russia HOWTO UNDERSTANDTHATTHE AGENCY IS PROFESSIONAL?  Membership inAREA (FELCA accreditation) –  IATC certificate (ICEF agent course)  References of other educational institutions
  5. 5. ACTIVITIES – Agent approach • Web-marketing using the agents’ websites • Participation in educational fairs • Publications in the agent brochures • Target seminars with the interested students • Special prices/discounts for the agents (not available with direct bookings) • Russian-speaking representative working at the educational institution or in Russia
  6. 6. Agent approach – Common mistakes • Slow reply • No interest in the Russian market peculiarities • Inefficient admission staff • Asking for students straight away • Lack of flexibility when solving the problems of a client /adjusting the course for the student • Lack of availability and courses updates • Do not perform the agent training • Mistakes in visa support documents • Regular newsletters = spam? • Lack of technology in use - noYouTube,Twitter, Facebook accounts
  7. 7. Agent approach – How to improve • Employ stable and efficient representatives • CLEAR POLICY of direct bookings and refund procedures • Keep to the point – name the key selling points, speak little but professional • Have full understanding of the visa procedure • Coordinate all the international students’ office services • Show flexibility when adjusting the course for the students’ individual requests • Implement full use of online booking and acceptance of electronic documents • Perform availability and courses updates on regular basis • Provide exhaustive information on the host family Treat an agent not only as a partner, but as a customer
  8. 8. Public approach – Activities • Educational fairs – consider an endless number of them, can be just a waste of time and money • Web-marketing (translation of the web-page in Russian language or marketing of the separate additional page in Russian) – high competition, lack of knowledge about Russian search engines • Use of testimonials of former students • Social networks
  9. 9. Public approach – Clients read your signals differently BROCHURES: Content mistakes, Clients consider brochure as a public offer; Promises instead of the facts; Strangers on the cover; Happy faces and places of interest instead of school facilities; Separate brochure for each course/center VIDEOS: Students’ testimonials instead of school facilities; No school key selling points; Quality (No key idea in the film; Smartphone videos; Poor editing) ;Too long (first 30 seconds are the most important)
  10. 10. Agent vs. Public approach in Russia Factor Agent approach Public approach Territory +/- Concentration on some areas with finding key agencies in each of them +/- Internet marketing/direct bookings Expenses + - Not targeted Visa issues + - Time + +/- Some success is possible if social networking is developed well Priority destination + +/- Depends on the region
  11. 11. Contact information Anna Ryzhova Email: Skype: canadapoint_anna AREA website: