All Collections
Admin Toolkit
Program Guidance
Best Practices: Selecting Ideal Matching Workflows for Self-match Cohort-based Programs
Best Practices: Selecting Ideal Matching Workflows for Self-match Cohort-based Programs
Updated over a week ago

Introduction

There are two self-match workflow methods: Structured and Gap-free. Generally speaking, smaller programs with fewer than 200 participants and a more targeted focus (e.g. high potential programs, grad students in a certain department connecting with professionals in their area of study, etc.) benefit most from a structured workflow set, while larger programs (200+ participants) with a broader focus (e.g. general career mentoring, undergraduate programs to facilitate the transition from high school to college, etc.) benefit most from a gap-free workflow set. Type of organization can also be a factor (academic, association, corporate). Reach out to a Customer Success team member for consultation.

Why it matters: Whether you're starting a brand new program or beginning a new cohort for your existing program, the enrollment and matching workflows you have participants follow can have a strong impact on the overall success.

Structured

  • Mentors have a specified duration for creating and publishing their profiles

  • Mentees have a specified duration for creating and publishing their profiles

  • Mentees wait until a designated matching period to find their matches

Advantages

  • Provides additional structure gives a sense of urgency to participants.

  • Provides a equal opportunity for all mentees to review all available mentors and decide which ones they would like to reach out to (this pairs well with the Bookmarking feature[link]). No first-come-first-served urgency.

  • When messaging to non-connected participants is enabled, mentees have time to reach out to a mentor about any questions they may have before making a connection request, increasing the likelihood of a strong pairing.

Drawbacks

  • Creates an artificial time barrier to matching which can result in fewer mentees remembering to return to the platform to find a partner.

  • Can feel constraining or over-engineered to some cultures, resulting in lower participant turnout.

Gap-free

  • Mentors have a specified duration for creating and publishing their profiles

  • Mentees can begin requesting a mentoring partner as soon as they publish their profiles

  • Mentees can match at their own leisure (rolling enrollment program; enrollment-only cohort workflow

Advantage

No time barrier to matching, which typically results in a higher number of mentoring requests being sent

Drawbacks

  • Without a specified time to send requests, mentees may feel more inclined to put off profile completion and finding a mentoring partner, leading to participant fall off.

  • Less mentors available at any given time and therefore, mentees may not have the opportunity to reach out to the mentor(s) of their choice.

Factors to consider:

  • Culture of your organization: Do people typically expect or respond better to structure?

  • Number of participants: With more mentors, the likelihood of mentees finding a mentor that can assist them with their specific needs.

  • Goal of the program: General career mentoring increases the likelihood of more mentors having experience in across the program in general skills, as opposed to meeting highly specific needs among mentees.

  • Audience type: Everyone, high potential program w/ execs, grad school students pairing with professionals, etc. (ties in with # of participants).

  • Connection duration: Does the duration increase the likelihood of returning participants, increase the likelihood of participating mentees?

  • Messaging campaign: How and at what frequency this information will need to be conveyed to participants.

Did this answer your question?