École polytechnique modernises executive education admissions

Executive education personalises the applicant journey and sees engagement rates soar



École polytechnique attracts more learners to executive education with targeted marketing campaigns that generate 30% more leads.


What you need to know

Applying for executive education can be a long endeavour, and École polytechnique needs to attract the best candidates and send them timely, relevant information at every step. With Salesforce, it launched an admission portal and modernised sales and marketing processes. Staff can segment leads, create personalised journeys, and make decisions based on real-time insights. The school has automated workflows to improve efficiency, increased the number of leads handled, and streamlined the applicant experience by 20%.

Why it matters

École polytechnique is France’s most prestigious engineering school. The school is government-funded and has an obligation to deliver excellence. It launched its executive education arm five years ago to deliver industry-leading programs for professionals. Known for being selective, the school wants to encourage more applicants and that means fostering stronger connections with the right people and making it easier to apply.
"We’ve modernised the entire admission process with Salesforce. It’s faster, smoother, and more personalised."
Samuel VINET
Director of Marketing and Sales for Executive Education, École polytechnique

What the difference looks like

Sales and marketing relied heavily on spreadsheets and lacked central visibility of leads and opportunities. For marketers, that meant extracting information from up to 25 spreadsheets to create campaigns and manually compiling information to analyse impact. Meanwhile, leads only reached sales reps when an application was submitted by email, missing the opportunity to nurture leads.

Now, applicants submit applications in a self-service portal built on Experience Cloud. Staff have access to more details on each applicant which it can use to create more relevant, personalised communications. They now also have visibility of candidates who have started an application in the system, allowing them to prioritise their follow-up actions.

Reps also automatically receive leads from candidates based upon their area of interest, thanks to automatic lead routing in Sales Cloud.

But the biggest change has been how the school can personalise its communications for the right applicant at the right time. Here's how it works:

  • Applicants are segmented by interest and job role. The school sends tailored communications with links to relevant content, like gated webinars. Webinar registrations have increased by 30% thanks to optimised landing pages and targeting applicants by their main interest or job role. The sessions are reused as gated content to maximise their value.
  • The marketing team uses data from email engagement and AB testing to optimise each communication.
  • The team tracks key KPIs like cost per acquisition and campaign ROI with real-time data insights easily accessible in dashboards.
  • In one click, sales reps can change the lead status in Sales Cloud and trigger email communications in Marketing Cloud Account Engagement that encourage the applicant to book a call with them directly. This nurturing journey has led to a 20% decrease in applicant submission time and reps have recovered approximately 10 working days per year thanks to the time saved.

As a result, the team handles 30% more leads. And because all of this rich applicant data is located in a single source of truth, reps can uncover new opportunities, like alumni who have changed job roles and might be interested in another program.

The school also plans to use Einstein AI for lead scoring to help its reps identify and prioritise the leads most likely to submit an application.

Behind the scenes:

The team worked with Salesforce Professional Services to navigate challenges and received coaching to learn more about how to use specific products.


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