Tutors Poaching Students – Four Ways to Prevent Customer Loss
Tutors Poaching Students
Tutors poaching students is an ongoing issue in our industry. How to stop tutors making deals with parents and cutting out the tutoring company is a question I’m asked on a regular basis when helping existing and potential Oases Online customers.
It can really affect the bottom line to lose customers in this way. So here are a four tips to keep poaching to a minimum.
1. Don’t Remove The Tutoring Company from Communication
It’s a nice idea to match a tutor with a student and then hand them over and sit back and watch the money come in, but it does not work that way in practice.
If your tutor is matched to a student then directed to reach out to the customer to set up sessions and deal with scheduling changes and day to day matters, the customer will begin to see their tutor as the tutoring company.
It’s then a very small step for the parent to suggest cutting out the company and paying the tutor directly.
Yes, it’s the customer who usually initiates a side deal, so if all communication flows via the tutoring company this is harder to do. The software you choose should facilitate this communication; choose a management system that schedules, sends reminders and offers email templates for day to day emails.
Oases Online offers great communication tools and and can deal with cancellation requests from customers on an automated basis from the customer’s portal.
2. Offer Discounts for Returning Customers
Offer returning customers or customers enrolling a second or third student a discount or a set amount of money off, or even a free session.
A management platform like Oases that offers the ability for individual rates for different students and discount codes (percentage or fixed amount off) via the storefront on your website will help to keep a track of who has what rate or discount and bill automatically with a personalized rate.
3. Offer Incentives for Referrals
Tutors poaching students doesn’t just apply to existing customers – offer parents a free session for referring a new student and don’t deliver the free session until the referred student has completed a set amount of tutoring and paid the invoice. A good tutoring management platform will help you manage referrals and track any reward given. Just be clear about the terms of the reward.
Offer tutors a bonus for referring a new student and again delay the payment until that new student has paid for a certain amount of service. Track the referrals and payments in your management system.
4. Have Your Tutors Sign a Non Compete Clause
Finally, have a good tutor contract. It sounds obvious to have tutors sign a contract with a non compete clause but it is important to add this item and define what it means. Think about and define the following:
- Is it okay for your tutors to work for another tutoring company as well as yours?
- Is it okay for your tutors to work with students they found on their own?
- Do you want tutors to work for you and only you with no students on the side?
You may decide not to act upon a breach of contract but the fact that it’s in the contract means they can’t say they didn’t know and it’s in the forefront of their mind if a customers asks to cut a deal.
See It All In Action
If you would like to see Oases in action to see how communication can be managed or any of the other great features and functions to streamline your tutoring business, please use the link below to book an online demonstration at your convenience.