How Wisr Works Overview

Welcome to the Wisr Admin Help site!

This site exists to help you and your team understand how to use Wisr and how to expand usage on and off campus. Throughout this site, you will find technical know-how articles, best practices and strategy guides, and useful resources/templates.

Help Site Categories

This tool is organized by categories most relevant to your Wisr experience and we wrote the articles in this help center to focus your efforts and position you and your team for success. Each category has an overview article, like this one, to make sure you start in the right place.

Starter Categories:

For new Wisr administrators, we recommend starting with three initial categories:

How Wisr Works – You're already here! This is the highest-level overview of Wisr and how it works without diving deep into the technical weeds of operations.

Customizing Wisr – As a new admin, once familiar with how Wisr works, you may want to understand what is configurable and customizable within your site. The Customizing Wisr category goes through these specifics.

Operating Wisr – This is going to be the most in-depth resource for the day to day operation of your Wisr site. This category takes each product area covered in ‘How Wisr Works’ and goes a level deeper.

How Wisr Works Overview

The purpose of this Overview article is to give you and your team the most high-level understanding of the who, what, why of Wisr and how each component of our software works together.

What is Wisr

At our core, Wisr is a tool that facilitates connections and empowers your members to build authentic and lasting relationships within the campus community. Our software is highly customizable and has been implemented to support several different campus initiatives from admitted student communities, to peer-to-peer first-year experience sites, to student and alumni career programs.

Designing your site to fit your program or network is essential to success. To start things off, we need to go over some important terminology.

  • Site
    • Wisr calls each of its unique portals a Site. Your site is where you configure who will participate and how they will interact with your program and each other. Each site has its own:
      • Domain and Login
      • Member Types
      • Custom Fields
      • Communities
    • Sites are connected to an institution to standardize academic information and allow easier program expansion if multiple sites are needed by the same school.
  • Members
    • Everyone who joins your site is a member. This includes your program participants, faculty/staff, mentors and mentees, community members, parents, etc. Member types are configurable and pre-defined by your team. Many site features, such as member goals, volunteer items, next steps, and matching rely heavily on one’s member type.
    • For a deeper dive on member types, click here.
  • Goals, Volunteer Items, and Next Steps
    • Members raise their hand in the site both in how they are looking for support (Goals) as well as how they are able to give help (Volunteer Items). Goals map to corresponding volunteer items, and the site will automatically prompt users with actionable next steps. These tools are critical for members as they navigate recommended members and use the member search tool to find connections.
    • For a deeper dive on goals and volunteer items, click here.
  • Connections
    • Community building and mentorship programs center around forming connections. In Wisr, connections can be made organically by two members finding one another or through a match by program-specific criteria. Connections can be facilitated over chat, meetings, or in-person depending on the program.
    • For a deeper dive on the ways members connect, click here.
  • Communities
    • Communities are a subset of your site, designed to bring specific members together. Each community contains:
      • Members list
      • Community leader role
      • Discussion board
      • Events
      • Files
    • Communities have an extensive set of features and applications, which are explored in its own article category, available here.

How is Wisr Used on Campus?

  • Prospective and admitted students
    • We work with admissions teams to incorporate technology and peer connections in yield and summer melt strategies. These programs leverage current students as peer mentors to connect with admitted students, share their authentic campus experience, and act as the first line of defense for everyday admissions questions.
  • Specific Mentorship Programs
    • Matching a cohort of students with active alumni, professional advisors, or trained peer mentors can be a time-intensive manual process. Wisr’s matching module has helped schools to automate necessary mentor matching. Admin dashboards and real-time reporting can streamline program management and help to easily track required mentor meetings, online engagement, and gather member feedback.
  • Career exploration/student-alumni networks
    • We often see career services and alumni relations offices teaming up to create and run student-alumni networking sites focused on career exploration and flash mentorship. In these sites industry-specific communities, internship/job shadow opportunities, and auto-recommended member connections tend to drive engagement. Cross-campus collaborations can be powerful here as career services programming focuses on student engagement and alumni relations can drive alumni sign-ups.
  • Alumni networks
    • Alumni Association sites are a way advancement and alumni teams modernize their alumni directory and build connections within wide-spread alumni bases. Regional communities offer an online component for regional chapter programming and tend to see high engagement. Industry-specific communities and related events also drive conversation in these sites.

Who Is Wisr?

  • Veteran entrepreneurs Kate Volzer, John Knific, and Kris Ciccarello founded Wisr in 2016 to bridge the growing rift between college education and successful job placement. Since the founding, Wisr has grown to support the full student lifecycle at 50 campuses across the US. Leveraging over thirty years of collective experience in higher education technology, the Wisr team built a tool that connects all of an institution’s stakeholders to put each student at the center of a web of mentors, academic advisors, and personalized support.

Again, Welcome to Wisr! Our customer success team is here to support you and your team as you learn how to use and thrive in Wisr. Take a look through the Admin Help Site as you start to become comfortable with the product and if you have any questions do not hesitate to reach out to our customer success team at

As a next step, we recommend reading the referenced articles above in the ‘ How Wisr Works’ category. When you are ready to dig into the specifics of day to day operation of your site, visit the Operating Wisr Overview.

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