When founders Frank Healy, Adam Carlson and Eric Flottmann started Higher Ed Growth (HEG) in June of 2007 they didn’t realize the country was on the eve of an economic collapse. “We considered starting an internet mortgage lead generation business, fortunately higher education was much more appealing to us,” says Frank Healy, President and CEO of Higher Ed Growth. “We didn’t start the company with a lot of capital and had we pursued mortgage, the company probably wouldn’t have survived”. During an economic downturn many laid-off and unemployed workers seek higher education to change careers or enhance their marketability to potential employers. HEG provides an array of services to the post-secondary higher education market, all of which help colleges and universities enroll more students. Through its proprietary portals, Udegrees.com, TrueDegree.com, EnrollmentAdvisor.com, and Edu4Military.com, HEG matches prospective students to the school that fits their particular needs and aspirations.
Founders Healy, Carlson and Flottmann built their first company together out of a garage. Their first venture, Yardcrew.com began with a $10,000 credit card and sweat equity, quite literally, in a hot garage in Tempe. The company soon became a hit with landscape companies nationwide and their client roster quickly grew to over 3,000. Yardcrew.com provides sales leads to landscape companies seeking new clients for commercial and residential maintenance and installation. A publicly traded firm in Silicon Valley eventually acquired the company for an undisclosed sum.
“We all enjoy the challenge of growing a business effectively from a bootstrapped position,” says Healy. Higher Ed Growth took in very modest seed capital from two Paradise Valley residents. One quite famous resident, Dorothy McGuire from the singing group The McGuire Sisters provided the initial round of funding.
Founder Adam Carlson single handedly created the proprietary systems HEG uses to run its business. “Our technology enables us to compete with larger agencies in an efficient manner while maintaining a lean work force,” says Carlson, Chief Technology Officer. “By leveraging technology, we can have a client live and receiving enrollment inquiries within an hour versus the weeks it takes most of our competitors”. Mr. Carlson has more than 15 years of technical experience and has participated in many large government and private industry projects throughout his career.
Paramount to the company’s success is its strong commitment to data analytics spearheaded by founder Eric Flottmann. “By analyzing patterns in our data, we are able to construct algorithms that more wisely guide students to schools where they have the highest likelihood to enroll,” says Flottmann, Chief Operating Officer. Additionally, HEG utilizes data mining to identify and eliminate fraudulent leads or enrollment inquiries.
Since its founding 5 years ago, Higher Ed Growth has stuck steadfast to its commitment to customer service. “When I came on board a year ago, it was made very clear that this organization’s number one priority is happy clients through customer service,” says Joe Laskowski, Managing Partner. “I knew this company would be a great fi t and I appreciate the opportunity to work with such a great team”. HEG’s strong commitment to service has ensured long lasting client relationships that go back as far as the first month the company began.
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