INTO University Partnerships

Based in the UK, INTO University Partnerships partners with universities to expand higher education opportunities for students worldwide. With a network of over 30 universities globally, the independent organization has helped over 130,000 students from 190 countries and territories study abroad. INTO maintains a global student marketing and recruiting infrastructure that empowers the universities they partner with to project their brands at a greater scale.

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Areas
B2B / PIM

The Challenge

INTO wanted to extend its reach by expanding its potential number of university partnerships. They recognized the need for a one-source-of-truth Product Information Management system that would encompass all university program and course information, and allow staff to easily enrich and publish highly structured product data for multiple channels. INTO also needed to reduce inefficient work processes within their organization, and required support for collaborative workflows. Driven by a vision of automated and centralized product curation, INTO sought support from Vaimo and Akeneo PIM to connect the pieces.

Into Uni challenge
The Solution

The Power of PIM

Vaimo implemented the Akeneo Enterprise PIM platform, which facilitates the gathering, structuring, and maintaining of complex product data. The centralized Product Information Platform ensures that timely data is delivered to INTO’s B2B Partner Portal as needed through an optimised API-based architecture. The solution manages complex product data related to university courses, campuses, and location information across channels. Customer groups, including current and future students, can then easily locate the relevant university courses and materials using INTO’s digital platforms.

With the power of PIM, INTO enjoys a user-friendly environment to onboard new product initiatives, and benefits from an increased speed-to-market for newly adopted products. INTO meets their current and future students with a world-leading digital platform and experience, ensuring that partners receive exactly the information they need.

Akeneo PIM in Action

INTO currently holds more than 22,000 different university courses and programs in its data set. In addition, data sets called “Reference Entities” contain tables with information, such as alumni data, country, currency, institutions, rankings, terms, and more, which total more than 30,000.

For instance, a single university course is cross-associated with multiple courses and is connected with programs, progressions, and roots. This allows students to see which courses within a program they must complete to qualify for the final exam. To put this into perspective, every single course that is connected through a progression to the final exam is itself a Product/Entity within Akeneo.

Previously, INTO’s team had to enter information manually into their data hub, but now they work directly with Akeneo. INTO’s team imports data into Akeneo and uses the system to perform product enrichment and structure their programs. The data is then pushed to INTO’s own Data Hub Integration Service, which uses an event-based API to pull the complete data set from Akeneo. The Data Hub feeds the information onwards to a complete catalog service and from there, the data reaches INTO’s website.

INTO Uni

“INTO selected Akeneo as its platform of choice after an exhaustive review of MDM and PIM solutions. The selection of Vaimo as a partner was easy given the quality of their professional services advisory and particularly their prior experience with Higher Education at the University Of Gothenburg.”

Julian Ford

VP Enterprise Information and Architecture at INTO University Partnerships

INTO University

INTO University Partnerships' Future Plans

In the future, Akeneo will play an even bigger role for INTO. INTO has worked on implementing Mandarin and Arabic into their system; luckily, Akeneo makes checking of the data easy. The Akeneo platform stores different languages for text descriptions with user-friendly visuals and drop-down menus, so the user can simply edit the attributes and spot missing data.

With tools to easily enrich its product catalog, INTO can focus on reaching more students with dreams of studying abroad.

Notable New Features & System Integrations:

  • Akeneo Serenity Edition
  • Integration with Data Hub Integration Service (SalesForce, FinancialForce, Smartling and Contentful)
  • Filter and search on associated products data points
  • Reference Entities containing complex data

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