More than ever before, universities are being asked to market to potential students more effectively, cut costs, improve the student experience, provide world class research capabilities, break down silos across campus, develop and implement better technology, and bridge the chasm between the campus community and the business world in very aggressive time-frames. And, many times, this is requested with little or no staffing as well as shrinking budgets. Today’s challenges can be overwhelming, but they are not going away. If anything, they are only becoming more urgent as time goes on and the Higher Education environment continues to change.
Relevant Areas of Expertise
When Higher Education institutions are able to marshal limited resources and programmatically make great strides, true transformation can occur. TSI helps our higher education clients define and improve and with all of the areas listed above. We help our clients create an optimized environment for students, administrators and faculty.
Whether an institution struggles with strategic planning, student-facing, administrative, financial processes or corporate, foundations relations and advancement challenges, TSI has worked with a wide range of higher education institutions to make tangible gains fast.
Provided below are a few examples:
Mid-sized Public University
TSI worked extensively with this university to understand key “points of truth” related to:
- Why students selected this university?
- Was it their first choice?
- What other alternatives were considered?
- What “points of envy” did students express when talking with their friends from other universities?
- Why didn’t students select the university?
TSI engaged students via focus groups, social media and other online survey tools to obtain this information. Ultimately this information was shared with a variety of functions and departments including: Marketing, Admissions, Student Services, Career Management, Financial Aid, Housing, IT , Student Affairs, Advancement and University Administration. These recommendations are currently being deployed but the early results look promising to improve the volume of applications, acceptances, student show rate, student retention and overall satisfaction.
Large Public University
For one of the largest universities in the US, TSI led this effort to develop an Advancement Technology Strategy and execute a detailed software evaluation to select the best Constituent Relationship Management (CRM) software vendor for this very complex university. TSI led a detailed business case analysis of the leading options as well as what tangible benefits should be expected from this $20M+ project.
Lastly, TSI played the Program Management and Change Management role while developing efficient processes and assisting in the redefinition and implementation of roles and responsibilities.
TSI’s outcomes included:
- Advancement strategic plan that clarifies the vison, mission and values for the overall function, aligned to the overall institutional strategic plan
- Results-oriented foundation, alumni association and corporate relations operating plans
- Structured change management plans to guide transformation and collaboration
- New organization structures, accountability matrices and job descriptions to support strategies and operating plans
- Implementation of pragmatic technology solutions that enable the advancement strategy
Mid-sized Graduate School and Health Science Center
TSI is leading an effort to develop and implement a process improvement (leveraging Lean) culture. TSI is leading the first wave of process improvements, co-leading the second wave and providing support on the third wave. TSI is also tailoring and deploying a process improvement methodology that will become their standard approach.
University Administrative Services Unit, CA
TSI conducted an analysis of the shared service processes performed by this unit, which faced a situation where its cost of delivering services was regarded as uncompetitive and its service quality as low in value, while a key investment income source had shown significant decline due to the financial markets’ collapse.
This function including Advancement, Alumni Relations, Campus facilities and Camps, Campus programs, IT Services and other functions.
TSI performed a thorough review of the technology in place and facilitated processes workshops, conducted constituent surveys and analyzed processes that identified inefficiencies in processes, organizational structure and systems. He then co-designed improvements that were presented to the University Executives consisting of (i) a 22% reduction in operating expenses, (ii) a new organization structure better suited to service delivery and (iii) an ROI of about six to eight times the cost of the engagement.
Midsized Public University, TN
TSI led a project to assist the University’s Leadership in introducing process improvement into the institution’s administrative processes. This approach involved a combination of a targeted process improvement project, a client training program on Process Improvement techniques and guidance on the formation of a PMO (Project Management Office) to oversee the management of future process improvement initiatives.
Comfort and Adaptability
TSI wants our clients to feel comfortable with change. Our approach is carefully planned and as transparent as we need to be to ensure stakeholders are properly included and communicated with.
Often blending top-down and bottom-up leadership and enthusiasm, TSI facilitates the creation of well-constructed project road maps with realistic timetables, keeping you in control the entire time. Our client-focused services are always aligned to the needs of the institution and, just as important, to the needs of the students and faculty.
TSI is a proud member of NCCI. NCCI is the Network for Change and Continuous Innovation: Higher Education’s Network for Change Leadership. NCCI’s vision is to function as a catalyst for higher education institutions to work collaboratively across institutions to employ effective methods to advance academic and administrative excellence.
Community of Discovery
As part of the NCCI, TSI has developed a Community of Discovery (COD). This is a consortium of progressive institutions that are dedicated to optimizing the total student experience in a changing landscape with highly disruptive trends. We recognize that new demands are placed upon our sector through the convergence of increased expectations of all of our constituents as well as through perceived and real higher education alternatives.
TSI leads and facilitates this selective, influential group of thought leaders that embraces these demands and strives to invent pragmatic responses that can be leveraged within their institutions.
Many constituents are holding Higher Education institutions to increasingly higher expectations. Whether your institution is striving to maintain a leadership position proactively, or make significant gains for other reasons, call on an expert team to define and achieve results that are specific to your organization – 847-705-0960 x 202.