Unexpected OpenApply Downtime (Resolved)

This morning OpenApply experienced unexpected downtime from 10:50 – 11:20AM (GMT+8) and again from 18:58 – 20:00 (GMT+8). Our database experienced an unexpected spike of requests. Our sincere apologies for the inconvenience that this may have caused. We have identified the root cause and will post a post-mortem report here shortly.


New Status Management Interface Has Deployed!

The updated status management interface was deployed on Saturday, May 6!

All current status histories will remain unchanged, but you will find an orange icon next to students whose status histories you may want to review. For advice on updating status histories, please refer to the tutorial on our Online Support Centre. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact us at support@openapply.com. Our team is standing by 24 hours a day to assist!


OpenApply Admissions Conference Doha: Recap

On April 28-29 2017 we held our first admissions conference in the Middle East and sixth overall at the International School of London Qatar. We were thrilled to welcome over 55 participants representing 32 schools.

See the full list of participating schools here.

On April 28 we hosted the pre-conference which focused on learning about the OpenApply system itself. Schools using OpenApply gained useful tips and tricks while those not using the system were able to see it in action for the first time.

First Nivin El Aawar, Head of Admissions at ISL Qatar, spoke on implementing OpenApply and the admissions process at her school. Next Angela Marquis and Lynne Godding, the ICT Manager and Admission and Marketing Director at Anglo-American School Sofia, spoke on going paperless with the help of OpenApply. Karen Strickland, Marketing and Communications Manager at Dwight School London, gave some practical tips on how to best collect and extract marketing data in OpenApply.

After lunch the OpenApply team ran three separate workshops for users of various experience levels. Day one wrapped up with a tour of the stunning Museum of Islamic Art and the famous Souq Waqif.

Day two started off with the Keynote Building a New School by Sergio Pawel, Chief Academic Officer for the ISL group. Sergio spoke about creating ISL Qatar from scratch ten years ago and how in order to build a school you must build a community first.

Kathleen Battah, Head of School at Wellspring Learning Community, followed with an emotional presentation on managing risk in education in Lebanon and techniques her school has used to create a safe environment for the students and reassurance for the parents.

Next, Natalie Kvackova-Sipula, Communications and Admissions Manager at International School of Prague, led a job-alike where participants broke up into small groups to discuss practices at their school from the tour to the application form to the re-enrolment process.

Following Natalie, Nivin El Aawar, Head of Admissions at ISL Qatar, spoke on how to blend coaching techniques with admissions and why it’s important to have a high CQ at an international school.

During lunch Rima Danaf, Admission Officer at ISL Qatar, led participants on a school tour of ISL Qatar’s beautiful campus.

David Willows, Director of Admissions and Advancement at International School of Brussels, started off the afternoon with an interactive session on re-imagining admissions as a learning experience. The group explored admissions processes of the past and discussed how technology can be incorporated into today’s process to create a better experience for parents and admissions officers going forward.

In the last session of the day Heather Mulkey, Education Consultant at Permian Company Ltd., brought a different approach by presenting hard numbers on the expat situation in the Middle East and discussed the best way to create reports to accurately track admissions and enrolment information in an ever more competitive market.

Sergio Pawel wrapped up the day with a review of what the group had learned so far. He then asked the group to submit feedback in real-time online to facilitate sharing of the conference outcomes and takeaways.

The day ended with mountains of Lebanese food at local favorite Layali Restaurant.

Further notes:
  • All presentations have been uploaded in PDF format to the online schedule. Please feel free to review!


Participants Said:

“At the conference I found loads of new ideas, contacts in other schools, and affirmation that I’m facing the same challenges as other schools.”

“Thank you very much for the opportunity to attend such a useful event and meet up with other admissions professionals.
It has been very fruitful days and I hope this will develop into a good tradition.”


“You are providing a valuable service for the admissions community.  Bravo!”

Coming Soon: Updated Status Management Interface!

Updates & Improvements

Next week we will release a new interface for managing statuses on the Applicant Profile in OpenApply.

The new interface provides both an updated design as well as improvements to popular features. With the new interface you’ll find:

  • Improved applicant status histories – Statuses will be tied to an enrolment year and status histories and effective dates can be edited after they are set, leading to cleaner, more accurate status histories.
  • More reliable analytics – Accurate status histories lead to better analytics. Statuses cannot be duplicated within an enrolment year, making analytics clearer and more reliable.
  • Easier to use – A simpler workflow to move applicants from enquiry to enrolment to departure reduces mistakes.
  • More flexible – You can choose to disable automated status notification emails on an individual basis, better accommodating for special circumstances.
All current status histories will remain unchanged, but you will find an orange icon next to students whose status histories you may want to review.


  • Tutorials: You can find updated tutorials on using the new status interface on our Online Support Center.
The updated interface is now available on our online demo account. We encourage you to take some time to explore the new feature before its release. Please contact us at support@openapply.com or by telephone if you have any questions about using the new interface. Our Support Team is standing by to help!

Feature Friday

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Announcing the March edition of the International Admissions Bulletin: Admissions at the Leadership Table

We are delighted today to release the digital version of our March 2017 issue of the International Admissions Bulletin!

“I have always had admissions on my leadership team. There is no way you can understand the bigger picture without listening to what Admissions has to say.”

Read more on page 30.

Our March issue focuses on the theme of leadership at the admissions table, and features:

…and more!

OpenApply is honoured to publish the International Admissions Bulletin as part of our ongoing commitment to providing robust professional development opportunities to international school admissions staff.

To request a physical copy, please click here.

Feature Friday

Disable Export to PDF for Questionnaire Forms: If your school uses a ‘Questionnaire’ type form for confidential recommendations, you can now disable the option for parents to export the form to PDF. This ensures that the recommendation must be completed confidentially online.


Navigate to Settings > Forms and click on the questionnaire form, then uncheck ‘Allow parents to print as PDF’.


More information can be found here.

Feature Friday

Multiple Enquiries per Family: If your school has the ‘Registration of Interest’ form enabled, parents can now submit enquiries for each child individually. This improves the accuracy of tracking incoming enquiries and reporting conversion numbers. For more information, click here.