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Next Catalog improvement: Bulk Purchase and Enrollment

zsgoreczky
Instructure
Instructure
0 37 2,276

Next Catalog improvement: Bulk Purchases and Enrollments

 

The Catalog Team spent the beginning of the year tweaking and fine-tuning the Shopping Cart and improving receipts. The team has also started building a new feature: Bulk Purchases and Enrollments. This feature enables individuals to purchase multiple seats in a single listing and distribute those seats by inviting students to enroll in that listing for free. This feature can also be used to enroll multiple students in free listings Users can view historical payments and enrollments by accessing the Purchases and Enrollments page from the Catalog menu.

 

Similar to the Shopping Cart feature rollout, the Bulk Purchases and Enrollments feature will be released in multiple phases to Beta, but in one batch to Production. 

A new button will soon be added to the Details (Listing) page to allow institutions ample time to adjust their custom CSS/JS code. In the beginning, the button will not work and I apologize for this limitation, but we would like to make sure that institutions have time to adjust any customizations, if necessary. Our goal is to have this new feature finished by the end of Q1 2022 and have the first Beta release next week. 

 

Please stay tuned, I will update this thread after each Beta release. 

UPDATE: We will need a little bit more time to complete all the requirements for bulk purchase and enrollment so it's not going to be finished by the end of Q1. I will keep this post up-to-date and let you know about the upcoming Beta release dates. 

UPDATE2: May 23 we released another major part of bulk purchase and enrollment to Beta. We are going to have a few more Beta releases before releasing the new functionality to Production. 

 

Screen Shot 2022-02-25 at 13.37.51.png



37 Comments
jsowalsk
Advocate

@zsgoreczky if I am understanding this correctly:

1. The shopping cart does not need to be used to use bulk purchasing right?

2. For this, This feature enables individuals to purchase multiple seats in a single listing and distribute those seats by inviting students to enroll in that listing for free. What will happen if the course has a fee attached to it?

3.  How long will we have to test this in beta before it moves to production?

zsgoreczky
Instructure
Instructure

Hi @jsowalsk 

1. No, shopping cart and bulk purchase / enrollment are not dependent on each other. 

2. If the course is a paying course, the individual (purchaser) pays for the fee and then invites students to enroll in the course for free. In this case students won't need to pay for the enrollment as the purchaser has already paid for it. 

3. We are aiming for releasing it to production at the end of March / beginning of April. 

jsowalsk
Advocate

Hi @zsgoreczky,

1. No, shopping cart and bulk purchase / enrollment are not dependent on each other. Great.

2. If the course is a paying course, the individual (purchaser) pays for the fee and then invites students to enroll in the course for free. In this case students won't need to pay for the enrollment as the purchaser has already paid for it. So, in this case, if someone needed to pay for 5 students and the course cost $10 it would be $50. $10 per student and would that show up in the analytics? I think I am stuck on the free part since for audit reasons there should be a cost involved for each student transaction even though one person is paying for them.

3. We are aiming for releasing it to production at the end of March / beginning of April.  Great. Can't wait to see it. Will there be release notes?

zsgoreczky
Instructure
Instructure

Hi @jsowalsk 

2. Yes, we are going to adjust Analytics and add who the purchaser is. Previously, the purchaser was always the student who enrolled in the course, from now these can be two different people. 

3. Yes, we will have the release notes published by the time of the last Beta release. 

jsowalsk
Advocate

Hi @zsgoreczky 

 

2. Yes, we are going to adjust Analytics and add who the purchaser is. Previously, the purchaser was always the student who enrolled in the course, from now these can be two different people. So does this mean it can be a particular role like a teacher or? Will the analytics show that the students had transactions of $x or just the purchaser?

3. Yes, we will have the release notes published by the time of the last Beta release. Great!

zsgoreczky
Instructure
Instructure

Hi @jsowalsk

At the time of the Bulk Purchase and Enrollments prod release in the Analytics Revenue and Revenue Report tables you will see the 'Purchaser' instead of the student. If you need to match the student and who the purchaser, you will be able to do it with the Catalog API. Admins will able to create a report through our API that provides them with information about the purchase’s date and amount, the purchaser and which students got enrolled via this purchase.

Right after Bulk Purchase and Enrollments we are going to start working on Analytics Improvements. That set of improvements will introduce some changes for the Analytics user interface as well and once those improvements are implemented you will be able to see students / purchaser in the same table from the UI as well. 

 

 

jsowalsk
Advocate

Hi @zsgoreczky 

At the time of the Bulk Purchase and Enrollments prod release in the Analytics Revenue and Revenue Report tables you will see the 'Purchaser' instead of the student. How will this be noted? As Purchaser or another role? If you need to match the student and who the purchaser, you will be able to do it with the Catalog API. But, what if you wanted to notate who was paid for such as student 1 is with purchaser 1 and they paid X - this needs to be done by API? Instead of just having the purchaser with all of the transactions? Admins will able to create a report through our API that provides them with information about the purchase’s date and amount, the purchaser and which students got enrolled via this purchase. In the future will this ever be in the Catalog analytics?

Right after Bulk Purchase and Enrollments we are going to start working on Analytics Improvements. That set of improvements will introduce some changes for the Analytics user interface as well and once those improvements are implemented you will be able to see students / purchaser in the same table from the UI as well. Ok, will it be required to have the bulk purchase feature on at push out if we are waiting for this step? When will this take place? 

jsowalsk
Advocate

Is there a way for bulk purchase to be turned off until the analytics are ready?

taevans
Community Member

@zsgoreczky This looks like a wonderful add to Catalog. As an institution that regularly has the need to bulk enroll people, could you clarify if this feature only handles the purchasing/seat reservation?...or does this feature also handle the enrollment of identified learners directly into the course? 

I'm wanting to understand the process a bit better. If someone purchases 5 seats, are they identifying specific people in that process?...or are they given unique single-use enroll links that can be sent to people later? 

If they are identifying specific people, do those people still have the task of enrolling themselves via some link provided after purchase (or reservation? if it is a free course)?   Or by identifying people in the purchase process, those people are enrolled into the course?

Depending on the answers to the above...I might have the following questions as well:

Can the bulk purchase tool also be used on course listings that are set to 'Hide Listing'?...or is this only on listings set to 'Show Listing' or 'Link Only'?

We have a LOT of use cases across our 13 sub-catalogs where an individual college needs to enroll a specific roster of students into a course. We currently use a home-grown app to handle bulk enrollments via CSV files mapped to registration fields in Catalog. 

I could see this bulk purchase tool be a possible replacement if it can work even for hidden courses. 

Another question that comes to mind is can this bulk purchase feature be enabled and disabled at the course listing settings level? We also have use cases where we would need certain listings to have that feature disabled, while for other listings we would want it to be enabled. 

zsgoreczky
Instructure
Instructure

Hi @taevans 

When someone purchases or reserves multiple seats in a listing, they can also invite students to enroll in that listing by providing their email addresses. These students are going to receive an email about having been invited to enroll in that specific listing free of charge. The invited students need to go through the regular enrollment flow by clicking the 'Enroll Now' call to action button in the email. If one doesn't know the email addresses of the students at the moment of the purchase, they can come back to their purchase and invite the students later as we are introducing a new 'Purchases and Enrollments' option in the main Catalog menu which will show the person's enrollment and purchase history. 

The bulk purchase / enrollment option is planned to be displayed for all listing types regardless of their visibility status similar to shopping cart. 

We haven't planned to build a listing-level control for this feature, but I'm taking a note of it and we will consider it as an iteration. 

jsowalsk
Advocate

@zsgoreczky Will this be available at the program level or just the root level? Please see my previous questions. Looking forward to trying this out.

zsgoreczky
Instructure
Instructure

Hi @jsowalsk 
This feature will be available for all listings which are open for enrollment and where the student cap is not reached yet. 

Can you please elaborate on why you would need to get bulk purchase / enrollment turned off? Thanks. 

 

jsowalsk
Advocate

Hi @zsgoreczky,

We REALLY need bulk purchasing to be able to show transaction data for EACH student payment and not just the purchaser for audit reasons. Can this be accomplished? Also, please see my additional questions below:

At the time of the Bulk Purchase and Enrollments prod release in the Analytics Revenue and Revenue Report tables you will see the 'Purchaser' instead of the student. How will this be noted? As Purchaser or another role? If you need to match the student and who the purchaser, you will be able to do it with the Catalog API. But, what if you wanted to notate who was paid for such as student 1 is with purchaser 1 and they paid X - this needs to be done by API? Instead of just having the purchaser with all of the transactions? Admins will able to create a report through our API that provides them with information about the purchase’s date and amount, the purchaser and which students got enrolled via this purchase. In the future will this ever be in the Catalog analytics?

Right after Bulk Purchase and Enrollments we are going to start working on Analytics Improvements. That set of improvements will introduce some changes for the Analytics user interface as well and once those improvements are implemented you will be able to see students / purchaser in the same table from the UI as well. Ok, will it be required to have the bulk purchase feature on at push out if we are waiting for this step? When will this take place? 

Is there a way for bulk purchase to be turned off until the analytics are ready?

 
 
zsgoreczky
Instructure
Instructure

Hi @jsowalsk 

Thank you for the detailed explanation. 
Would it be helpful if we included the Canvas user_id of the students who got enrolled with a specific purchase to the CSV of the Revenue Report? In this way you could see the purchaser, the purchaser's email address, the amount they paid the user_id of the students who got enrolled through the purchase they made in one report. 

Yes, as I mentioned previously, with Analytics improvements all this information will be available on the UI as well and not only through the API or in a CSV. 

taevans
Community Member

@zsgoreczky 

Thanks for your reply to my question...Your reply to @jsowalsk asking why they would want bulk purchasing turned off, had me thinking our institution will most likely need the bulk purchase/enrollment turned off as well. The main reason, for us, is that Catalog is unable to add tax to course purchases.

Quite a lot of our bulk enrollment cases look like this: 

  • Company X contracts through one of our colleges to provide a training course to 20 of their employees
  • The college takes payment from Company X outside of Catalog, with added tax, if applicable for that company
  • The college prepares a bulk enrollment CSV which we use via our tool to bulk enroll their 20 employees

The State of Ohio requires a digital services tax to be collected on transactions whenever a business purchases enrollments for their employees. If an individual person purchases the course for themselves, it is not taxed...only when a company is purchasing it.

Because Catalog cannot add tax to payments, we require all business purchases to take place outside of Catalog.

If the bulk purchase option is enabled and accessible for end users to use, then we anticipate companies might end up using it to purchase enrollments for their workers...and if they do, we won't be able to add the appropriate tax...and then we'd be out of compliance with our State tax policies. This would require us to track each transaction with an eye towards potentially canceling some of them only to redo the enrollments after payment takes place outside Catalog.

In our case, the bulk purchasing feature, as I'm understanding it, would definitely be useful, but only for our courses that are free...and it's only on those free courses that we would feel that we could safely use it. 

jsowalsk
Advocate

Hi @zsgoreczky,

Would it be helpful if we included the Canvas user_id of the students who got enrolled with a specific purchase to the CSV of the Revenue Report? It would be better as the way it already is on the report which is the 

id reference_id student_name student_email listing_id listing_name total purchased_at status

 

Is this possible? In this way you could see the purchaser, the purchaser's email address, the amount they paid the user_id of the students who got enrolled through the purchase they made in one report. It would still need to be attached to the students and not the purchaser that the transaction was made since lets say a purchaser purchased enrollments for 5 students instead of having the transactions go to the purchaser it would be 5 transactions and the purchaser would be marked at the payer if I am making sense. Otherwise, that would count for 6 transactions right or how would the purchaser be noted?

Yes, as I mentioned previously, with Analytics improvements all this information will be available on the UI as well and not only through the API or in a CSV. Great.

rpsloan
New Member

@zsgoreczky This is great! I would like to see the listing-level control for this (and I saw that you have already taken a note of this). Some of our Catalog listings may find it really helpful, while others might just not want it visible on the listing page.

kevinhitt
Community Member

My institution is also in the same boat as @jsowalsk and @taevans , we would desperately prefer the option to not use this feature, or to disable it immediately after implementation. We would need to consider the implications this feature could have on our business processes & reporting capabilities.

I agree this feature could be useful in some cases that apply to us, but if purchasers were to use this  prematurely we could also be out of compliance or greatly complicate our reporting & ultimately bring more detriment than benefit to our student experience. 

zsgoreczky
Instructure
Instructure

Hi @kevinhitt Thank you for sharing your feedback with us. Similar to shopping cart, we will have a mechanism for turning off bulk purchase / enrollment in production for any institution that doesn't wish to use it. So please let your CSM know about it once it's available in Beta and then will make sure that your institution is not included in the production release. 

Hi @rpsloan Thank you for letting me know about this need. We will consider it as part of the scope. 

Hi @jsowalsk Thank you for the clarification. We are looking into how we can support that right away with bulk purchase. 

Hi @taevans Thank you for sharing your use case. That's really helpful. I believe this Ohio State tax policy doesn't apply to current, single-seat payments because those are made by students and not businesses? Just trying to understand the needs here. 
We will make sure that if an institution doesn't wish to use this feature, then it won't be available for them.  

I really appreciate all the feedback you are providing, it's been extremely helpful. Thank you! 

jsowalsk
Advocate

@zsgoreczky Thank you! Please let us know if my suggestion gets put into beta and it’s ready to take a look at. Will bulk purchase and the shopping cart be required to use in the future?

Christian-Jacob
New Member

Hi there @zsgoreczky 

If users are required to register with their individualized information, can they use the bulk payment option? 

zsgoreczky
Instructure
Instructure

Hi @Christian-Jacob Yes, they can. Users will be able to initiate the bulk purchase / enrollment flow and select how many seats they would like to claim even without being registered or logged in. Once they have selected the seat number, they will be asked to login or register. At registration they will see the same registration page (and possible user defined fields) that any student sees when they register. 

@jsowalsk Sure, I will update this post every time we release other parts of the flow to Beta. 
No, any institution can decide not to use shopping cart of bulk purchase / enrollment. In this case we will disable it for them. 

jsowalsk
Advocate

@zsgoreczky Thank you for clarifying and for all of your effort on this.

Christian-Jacob
New Member

@zsgoreczky There's still some confusion from the team I'm supporting.  Could you clarify if the original registrant registers the entire group or if individuals login and complete the registration form themselves. Thanks! 

zsgoreczky
Instructure
Instructure

Hi @Christian-Jacob I see what you mean. In case of bulk purchase / enrollment the students receive an invitation email for enrolling in a specific listing for free. If they click the main call-to-action button in the email, they are taken through the existing enrollment flow. So if they are not logged in, they are requested to either log in or to register. It's not the purchaser who registers them, the students themselves have to do it. 

jsowalsk
Advocate

@zsgoreczky even though you are saying the listing is free but it is really paid will this be updated in the analytics for the enrollments and revenue for each individual? What would be the responsibility of the purchaser if everyone still needs to register? When will this be in beta to take a look at?

zsgoreczky
Instructure
Instructure

Hi @jsowalsk As discussed above for now Analytics will reflect the purchase from the purchaser's perspective and we will add the canvas_id of the students who enrolled with the purchase to the Revenue Report. In Q3 we will do a lot of improvements in Analytics and it will improve the 'who enrolled with which purchase' metric. 

I don't have an exact date for the final beta release, we are going to have multiple beta releases before the production one. I will keep this thread up-to-date. 

jsowalsk
Advocate

@zsgoreczky Thank you for the update. Will it also be reflected in the enrollment report? Will the analytics improvements be added to beta first before being pushed to production?

zsgoreczky
Instructure
Instructure

Dear All, 


yesterday we released another part of Bulk Purchase and Enrollment to Beta. We are going to have a few more Beta releases before releasing the entire functionality to Prod. I will keep you posted. 

jsowalsk
Advocate

@zsgoreczky Hi, what were the changes that we should be looking for? When will this be pushed to prod and if necessary can it be turned off? Are there any updates on the analytics piece?

zsgoreczky
Instructure
Instructure

Hi @jsowalsk 

We have added the entire purchaser flow. So if you click the 'Bulk Purchase / Bulk Enrollment' button, you can select the number of seats you want to purchase / claim, and invite students to enroll in the course / program. Only promotion codes are not added to the flow yet and there is going to be another tab under 'Purchases and Enrollments' for bulk purchases and enrollments. 

Yes, if you don't want to have Bulk purchase / Enrollments enabled for your institution, we can turn it off.

We are aiming for releasing it to Prod at the end of June. 

 

jsowalsk
Advocate

Also, do you have any updates on the analytics piece and getting that updated?

jsowalsk
Advocate

Do cost transactions work for this workflow in beta or only free? @zsgoreczky 

sbarry2
Community Member

I tested the bulk purchase in our Beta site. I wasn't able to add more than one course with multiple seats. I added Course A for 5 seats and wanted to add five seats in Course B. But the Catalog won't let me select a second course. Will that be a feature coming soon? Thank you.  @zsgoreczky . 

zsgoreczky
Instructure
Instructure

Hi @sbarry2 , thank you for sharing your feedback with us. 
Currently, bulk purchase and enrollments work with individual listings. If we see a great demand for making it work with multiple listing checkout, we will look into how we could support it. 

fsantiago
New Member

Hi Is there some documentation about the text in the invite email?

DDFletch
New Member

I'm thrilled to hear that this functionality is coming.  We have a program of 5 or 6 courses, will I be able to sell bulk subscriptions for the whole program?  

Also, is there anyway I could use this as a beta tester?  I really need this functionality for this coming school year.