When the 2012 STM Star Award winners are announced on 1 September in London, IALC schools will feature 24 times in the shortlists, in categories ranging from English Language School Europe to Work Experience Provider and Vocational College. Five out of six nominees for Star World Language and four out of five schools in contention for Star English Language School North America are IALC members. What is it about IALC schools that agents like?
In all of our agent surveys, the same two factors consistently emerge: quality and personal relationships. “We like to have direct contacts with the people we are working with. We know their faces, we know when we send students what to expect,” says Jos Kerkhof, owner of StudyTravel in the Netherlands and a regular attendee of the IALC Workshop. “There is a very direct connection with the owners of the IALC schools.”
IALC schools are single language centres or owner-operated groups of up to five centres, so the directors tend to be hands-on, available to deal with key issues and able to take fast decisions. Agents also get to know key staff by name, building longstanding relationships and trust.
With their high standards ensured through regular electronic and physical audits, IALC members also form a pre-selected group of accredited, professional language schools for agents. “It’s very nice to come here and meet people from nice and selected schools,” says 2012 IALC Workshop participant Bia Bitelman from Camp and Teen Travel Consultants in Brazil.
While quality of course comes in all sizes, one of the ways that IALC’s smaller schools stand out against the big chains is through a more personal and flexible service. In our 2011 agent survey, independent schools scored significantly higher than chain schools for flexibility, customer care and access to decision makers.
“I’d recommend IALC schools for agencies that are looking for good quality schools, small to medium size, good customer service. Basically, a good experience for their students,” says Leo Rodriguez of Linguaservice Worldwide in the USA.
Discover the advantages of working with IALC schools first hand at the 2013 IALC Workshop in Lisbon . Meet the directors and owners of 110+ top language schools worldwide at a professional workshop that is small enough to meet everyone but big enough to offer a great choice of destinations and programmes.
Record Star Award nominations for IALC