Creating One Stop Student Services
With complexity in higher ed only increasing—due to trends, including online learning and the demographic shift to nontraditional students—implementing more student-centered services has become crucial to meeting the needs of today’s learners. By creating “One Stop” student services, institutions can modernize, streamline and simplify the student experience while improving efficiency and service.
In this web seminar, a panel of higher ed CIOs discussed how they are shifting their institutions to a student-centered, one-stop student services model, and outlined some strategies for doing the same at any institution.
Chief Product Strategist
Vice President for IT
Tallahassee Community College
Palm Beach State College
Andrew Graf: Customers in higher education are a digital generation with high expectations of service. They have experiences with things like Amazon, Google and Uber, so simplicity and convenience are critically important.
We’re trying to make the delivery and experience of service convenient, whether through IT being able to better serve the students, faculty and staff by delivering their strategy, or through financial aid or facilities.
We put out a survey—completed by over 100 institutions—to see how institutions are approaching one-stop and where the saturation is. Forty-seven percent had a current initiative around one-stop, or were working on it.
Bret, what is the context of the term ‘One Stop’ on campus?
Bret Ingerman: It’s convenience and simplicity. It’s wanting to improve the experience for students.
We’ve been creating a one-stop experience for our students from the point when they first express an interest in the college to getting them into a seat in class. We’ve put together a one- stop location where students can call to get information on everything from enrollment to registration to financial aid—all those things that they need to help them become a student at TCC. It’s about focusing on the key offices and the key services where one-stop would remove some of the frustration on a student’s journey.
Andrew Graf: Ken, what about Palm Beach State?
Kenneth Libutti: We recently completed our strategic plan, looking out to 2023 and focusing on the user experience. We understand that we need to provide the kinds of information that the stakeholders will be looking for, at the time they’re going to need that information. So we’re very focused around the person who’s asking for the information, and at what stage or at what point they may be asking.
We’ve taken a look at the student life cycle. We have come up with a matrix of the kinds of information that they’re looking for, and defined where those data points are and how we want to present those data points.
Andrew Graf: You have made a lot of progress, but others aren’t as far along. Where do you recommend starting?
Kenneth Libutti: Start where you have the most need. Start small. Start with something that has a large impact, but that you can accomplish quickly.
Bret Ingerman: IT needs to listen and focus on the issues that could be met by a solution you already have or are considering. It’s about having the right tools and identifying the right partners to participate in those conversations.
For example, IT was looking for a service desk solution. I knew that our enrollment services group, the student affairs unit, was looking to bring in an enrollment call center, and I thought the needs were not exactly the same. It was really great to bring them into the conversation. We also knew communications was looking for a tool to do intake and that institutional effectiveness was looking to do intake of report requests. So I brought those stakeholders to the table to be a part of identifying and procuring solutions, or to be a part of the discussion about which of our existing product or solutions might be easily repurposed to meet their needs.
Kenneth Libutti: We’re coming from implementing TeamDynamix in IT. We needed to establish our service desk and our project management, and I wanted to be able to have that one single look at the efforts and where we’re bringing value to IT. We realized that these kinds of efficiencies within IT—especially being able to have that one view into the organization and be transparent to the executive staff about where IT is putting their efforts—help the institution as a whole begin to streamline other areas.
It’s kind of been an organic process. We onboarded several of the areas within the college. We put in customer relationship and marketing; pulled in human resources, instructional technology and facilities; and we began the discovery process with student services.
To watch this web seminar in its entirety, please visit universitybusiness.com/ws092718