The second year of the ongoing Models of Efficiency program continues to demonstrate that campus departments can be innovative and inspired when it comes to finding ways to provide superior service and maximize resources.
"We believe that improving the efficiency of administrative services yields cost savings and reputation benefits that can propel a college into the top tier of success," noted Miles Lasater, chief operations officer and cofounder of Higher One, which has sponsored the Models of Efficiency program from the start.
In addition to being profiled in the magazine and online, Models of Efficiency honorees receive handsome, customized plaques recognizing their efforts, but we like to do more. So, during the recent NACUBO conference in July, University Business celebrated their achievements with an awards dinner and presentation at Jackson's Bistro at Harbor Island in Tampa. Hosted by Higher One, it was a relaxing evening, where the honorees and guests could meet, compare notes, and have a good time. Interestingly, dinner table conversation seemed to spark even more new ideas about enhancing services.
Lasater and Dan Kinnaman, publisher of University Business, shared anecdotes from the honorees' profiles. The audience reaction to some stories—such as the department that, faced with an overwhelming 800 phone calls a day, found a way to reduce waiting time to 30 seconds or less—proved that small changes can result in big improvements. "It's a good example of looking outside the box to simplify procedures," Kinnaman said.
Forty-one institutions have been recognized to date for their achievements since the program began, with new entries arriving weekly. These eight campus departments were honored at the event:
- The Office of Continuing Education at Fresno Pacific University (Calif.)
- The Office of Business and Finance at the State University of New York at Cobleskill
- The Computer Services department at Temple University (Pa.)
- The Office of Planning, Assessment, Research, and Quality at the University of Wisconsin-Stout
- The Registrar's Office at Oakland University (Mich.)
- The Financial Aid office at Indiana University-Purdue University Fort Wayne
- The Registrar, Undergraduate Admissions, and Information Technology Departments at the College of William & Mary (Va.)
- The Information Technology department at Sacred Heart University (Conn.)