Held in Monument, London last week (3 March 2015), the seventh Hobsons University conference was the largest yet. The venue spanned across two floors in order to accommodate the growth of the event, with nearly 200 attendees hailing from all over the EMEA region.
This year’s conference, ‘Insight and Innovation for competitive advantage’ provided an opportunity for delegates to get involved in debate about different outcomes of the upcoming UK general election and its impact upon higher education. Emran Mian, Director of the Think Tank the Social Market Foundation, explored what the future holds for your institution and engaged with Andy Blair from University for the Creative Arts, Claire Lorrain from the University of Winchester, and Donald McLeod from the University of Hertfordshire in a panel discussion receiving great engagement from an interested audience.
Delegates got to preview what is to come for Hobsons technology roadmaps, and hear from Hobsons partners on their own experiences, best practice and recommendations. The extended lunch time this year brought plenty of opportunity to network, as well as the new addition of the Hobsons Hub where university partners accessed valuable one-on-one time with Hobsons specialists.
Key to the excitement and debate of this year’s Hobsons U however was the exclusive first look at findings from the Hobsons third International Student Survey, addressing the topic of Defining and Delivering ‘Value’ when it comes to a UK education. With over 15,000 respondents from international students applying to study in the UK, the insight provided from the survey is sure to inform the marketing and targeting of Hobsons partners throughout the next recruitment cycle.
The afternoon’s breakout sessions saw contributions from a variety of institutions on subjects ranging from short term campaigns and activity to achieve recruitment goals, aligning business processes with institutional goals through Radius, and how to stand out with your email communications.
Hobsons were also very pleased to host the wonderful Picklejar Communications, with Tracy Playle and Ellie Lovell providing an informative, engaging and interactive session on how to create winning content.
The day was rounded off with a drinks reception accompanying the Innovation and Best Practice Awards, which celebrated the input of all those contributing to the conference this year and recognised the excellent and innovative work of our valued partners.