Upcoming Events

Creating Sustainable Business Models for the Post-Pandemic Campus—Session 4

April 27, 2021

Time: 1-2:30 pm ET

Location: Online

This workshop series is part of our continuing partnership with ACE, it will be led by Rick Staisloff, Donna Desrochers and Katie Hagan, and will be offered on the ACE Engage®​ peer-to-peer learning platform.

The workshop series supports a new Strategic Finance microcredential issued as an open digital badge⁠, which can be added to your CV, LinkedIn profile, and Credly Acclaim platform.

​​​Sign up for the series if you need to:

  • Understand the shift from traditional approaches to resource allocation to a return-on-investment (ROI) lens
  • Be able to identify the components of ROI
  • Be familiar with best practices in the field for creating sustainable business models
  • Get peer and expert feedback on action plans for adopting an ROI approach at your own institution, with an emphasis on moving successfully from survival to recovery to sustainability post-pandemic

This session will provide general feedback on the action plan creation and allow participants to engage with practitioners in the field.

Special guests: Members of a strategic finance leadership group convened by rpk GROUP and ACE to map an agenda for the field.

Session Activity​

  • Participants will capture key best practice for implementing an ROI lens.

Recent Webinars

Creating Sustainable Business Models for the Post-Pandemic Campus—Session 3

April 13, 2021

Time: 1-2:30 pm ET

Location: Online

This workshop series is part of our continuing partnership with ACE, it will be led by Rick Staisloff, Donna Desrochers and Katie Hagan, and will be offered on the ACE Engage®​ peer-to-peer learning platform.

The workshop series supports a new Strategic Finance microcredential issued as an open digital badge⁠, which can be added to your CV, LinkedIn profile, and Credly Acclaim platform.

​​​Sign up for the series if you need to:

  • Understand the shift from traditional approaches to resource allocation to a return-on-investment (ROI) lens
  • Be able to identify the components of ROI
  • Be familiar with best practices in the field for creating sustainable business models
  • Get peer and expert feedback on action plans for adopting an ROI approach at your own institution, with an emphasis on moving successfully from survival to recovery to sustainability post-pandemic

Session 3: Creating an ROI Action Plan

Participants will build on the skills from Sessions 1 and 2 to consider an action plan for applying an ROI lens. Facilitators will share pitfalls to avoid and strategies for implementing change management approaches.Session Activity

  • Participants will identify the components necessary to create an action plan for implementing an ROI lens at their own institution.

Creating Sustainable Business Models for the Post-Pandemic Campus—Session 2

April 6, 2021

Time: 1-2:30 pm ET

Location: Online

This workshop series is part of our continuing partnership with ACE, it will be led by Rick Staisloff, Donna Desrochers and Katie Hagan, and will be offered on the ACE Engage®​ peer-to-peer learning platform.

The workshop series supports a new Strategic Finance microcredential issued as an open digital badge⁠, which can be added to your CV, LinkedIn profile, and Credly Acclaim platform.

​​​Sign up for the series if you need to:

  • Understand the shift from traditional approaches to resource allocation to a return-on-investment (ROI) lens
  • Be able to identify the components of ROI
  • Be familiar with best practices in the field for creating sustainable business models
  • Get peer and expert feedback on action plans for adopting an ROI approach at your own institution, with an emphasis on moving successfully from survival to recovery to sustainability post-pandemic

In session two, we’ll take a deeper dive into the application of an ROI lens. Case studies will be used, examining academic portfolios, student success initiatives, and administrative services.

Session Activity

  • What challenges would you likely face in applying an ROI lens at your institution, and how might those challenges be addressed?
  • In what ways does the application of an ROI lens differ when used for academic, student, and administrative services?

Creating Sustainable Business Models for the Post-Pandemic Campus—Session 1

March 30, 2021

Time: 1-2:30 pm ET

Location: Online

This workshop series is part of our continuing partnership with ACE, it will be led by Rick Staisloff, Donna Desrochers and Katie Hagan, and will be offered on the ACE Engage®​ peer-to-peer learning platform.

The workshop series supports a new Strategic Finance microcredential issued as an open digital badge⁠, which can be added to your CV, LinkedIn profile, and Credly Acclaim platform.

​​​Sign up for the series if you need to:

  • Understand the shift from traditional approaches to resource allocation to a return-on-investment (ROI) lens
  • Be able to identify the components of ROI
  • Be familiar with best practices in the field for creating sustainable business models
  • Get peer and expert feedback on action plans for adopting an ROI approach at your own institution, with an emphasis on moving successfully from survival to recovery to sustainability post-pandemic

In this session, we introduce the shift from traditional budget models focused on spending to a new approach based on return on investment (ROI). Participants will explore how the ROI approach better responds to changes in the external environment.

Special guest: Jon Turk, director of research at ACE, will share new Pulse Point survey findings on the biggest financial pressures colleges and universities are facing.

Session Activity

  • Participants will debate the following: 1) Is higher education ready to adopt an ROI lens?; 2) How different is the ROI approach?; 3) What would change at your institution as the result of a shift to an ROI approach?
  • Participants will also capture what they consider to be the top three best practices when shifting to an ROI lens. ​

EACUBO – Reallocating Resources Toward a Post Pandemic College

March 25, 2021

Time: 12-1 pm ET

Location: Online

During this virtual session at EACUBO’s spring workshop, Rick Staisloff will be joined by Melissa Beardmore, CFO at our long-time partner Anne Arundel Community College. Melissa will share from AACC’s experience conducting a full administrative services review with rpk. That work resulted in the capture of savings equal to 5% of AACC’s annual operating budget—allowing for reinvestment in the college’s post-pandemic transformation efforts.

Budgeting at higher education institutions is largely based on historical allocations, with little connection to strategy. As a result, many institutions find themselves with unsustainable business models. This session will share how institutions can shift to a return-on-investment framework, allowing them to reallocate toward a new shared future vision and create a business model that is sustainable in the long run. The session will feature recent case study examples of academic portfolio and administrative services restructurings that positioned institutions to emerge strongly from the pandemic.

Strategic Finance Learning Studio: Virtual Happy Hour

December 3, 2020

Time: 6-7 pm ET

Location: Online

Join Rick Staisloff and friends at 6 p.m. on selected Thursdays for friendly, freewheeling conversations about using resources strategically to fulfill your mission. Ask questions, share your best practices, or take a break from your quarantine by interacting with colleagues virtually. This series is presented in partnership with the American Council on Education and is brought to you via their ACE Engage platform.

Today’s topic: Mergers and Acquisitions

Faculty Well-Being: Business Planning to Support a Stronger Workforce

December 1, 2020

Time: 2 pm ET

Location: Online

Join Rick Staisloff during this event presented by The Chronicle of Higher Education with support from Fidelity Investments.

College faculty are stressed — and it’s had a negative effect on their job satisfaction. In fact, a recent Chronicle survey of more than 1,100 professors and instructors around the country found that more than two-thirds of respondents felt “very” or “extremely” stressed. As the pandemic continues to change the way faculty live and work, it is also changing the way they feel about their jobs.

How can colleges better support their faculty to help them combat the stress and exhaustion they are experiencing as a result of the pandemic? Our panel of experts will examine the October survey findings and discuss how higher ed institutions can respond.

-What do faculty attitudes about teaching and retirement suggest about the future of the academic workforce?
-How can campus business officers support faculty needs during this difficult moment?
-How can leaders better involve faculty in decision making?

SCUP North Atlantic Symposium: Lessons From the Fall

November 13, 2020

Time: 1:10 - 2 p.m. ET

Location: Online

Finance & Business – The Higher Education Business Model: Change is Overdue
Moderated by: Rick Staisloff, Senior Partner, rpk GROUP

Presented by: Melissa Beardmore, Vice President for Learning Resources Management, Anne Arundel Community College | Tim Bowman, Executive Dean for Administration and Finance, Harvard University, John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences | Scott Jordan, Executive Vice President for Administration & Chief Financial Officer, University of Connecticut

Higher education’s response to the COVID-19 crisis has required a short-term focus on necessary expenses to support remote work and learning, as well as one-time adjustments to address budget shortfalls.  However, if COVID is viewed as an accelerant rather than a cause of higher education’s long-term business model challenges, how might institutions begin to pivot towards a more sustainable model?  This session will highlight best practice approaches for reallocating existing resources (people, time and money) toward strategic investments that support mission, student success and the business model.

APLU Annual Meeting: Strategic Finance for Institutions

November 10, 2020

Time: 2:15 - 3:30 p.m. ET

Location: Online

The pandemic is having an immense impact on higher education, with expected shortfalls in state budgets and substantial reductions in state appropriations to public universities. Combined with declines in other revenue streams and increases in costs to maintain their academic and social missions, public research universities are facing significant economic challenges. How do institutions address equity in student achievement, diversity in faculty and administration, and operate with reduced revenues? Join a discussion on strategic finance and sustainable solutions that balance administrative efficiencies and financial recovery with student success, the academic portfolio, and faculty productivity. Panelists will focus on change management strategies that align with institutional missions and the students they serve.

Panelists include:

  • Anne Ollen, Managing Director TIAA Institute
  • Rick Staisloff, Founder and Senior Partner, rpk GROUP
  • Rita Cheng, President, North Arizona University
  • Clara Young, Assistant Vice President for Academic Affairs Tennessee State University
  • Chad Muntz, Assistant Vice Chancellor of Institutional Research, Data & Analytics University System of Maryland
  • Valeria Garcia, Associate Vice President, Decision Support University of South Florida

Strategic Finance Learning Studio: Workshop

September 16, 2020 - September 30, 2020

Time: 1-2 pm ET

Location: Online

The Strategic Finance Learning Studio’s online workshop will teach you to use the Mission, Market, and Margin® approach and develop a plan to put it into action on your campus. This three-hour workshop—three one-hour sessions over three weeks—will be facilitated by Rick Staisloff and his colleagues from the rpk GROUP and hosted on ACE Engage.

Sessions will take place on September 16, 23, and 30 from 1-2 p.m.

Strategic Finance Learning Studio: Virtual Happy Hour

September 10, 2020

Time: 6-7 pm ET

Location: Online

Join Rick Staisloff and friends at 6:00 p.m. ET each Thursday from August 6 through September 10 for friendly, freewheeling conversations about using resources strategically to fulfill your mission. Ask questions, share your best practices, or take a break from your quarantine by interacting with colleagues virtually.

The conversation is open for anyone to participate via chat or video, or simply listen in and get some insights.

Past Events

Virtual Roundtable for Higher Education Leaders

May 28, 2020

Rick Staisloff

Microsoft Campus Connections Summit (CCS)

February 5, 2020

Rick Staisloff presented on Sustainable Innovation in Higher Education

Learn more here

2019 Integrating Analytics Forum, Navigating Challenges and Moving to Data-Informed Action

November 10, 2019

Findings from NACUBO’s Analytics Survey

Presenters: Lindsay Wayt, NACUBO, Richard Staisloff, rpk GROUP, and David Raney, Nuventive

OpenEd Conference 2019 — Phoenix, AZ

October 30, 2019 - November 1, 2019

Impacts and Lessons Learned from Achieving The Dream’s OER Degree Initiative
Building Sustainability Cross-Institutionally: SUNY’s Approach

Donna Derochers presented two sessions

Grantmakers for Education 2019 Annual Conference — New Orleans, LA

October 22, 2019

Investing for Impact:  Determining the ROI of Cross-Sector Partnerships for Student Success

Rick Staisloff was part of a panel presenting on Investing for Impact:  Determining the ROI of Cross-Sector Partnerships for Student Success

Learn more here       Check out our presentation

Educause Annual Conference — Chicago, IL

October 16, 2019

Open Education Resources on Supporting OER Programs at Scale at Your Institution

Donna Desrochers of rpk GROUP

Tennessee Higher Education Commission on Innovative Governance — Memphis, TN

August 15, 2019 - August 16, 2019

Positioning Tennessee Higher Education for the Future

Rick Staisloff of rpk GROUP

SHEEO State Agency Workshop on Evaluating and Promoting the Financial Viability and Success of Our Postsecondary Institutions — Boston, MA

August 6, 2019

Rick Staisloff, Donna Desrochers, Lysa Teal and Tammy Kolbe

Learn more here

NACUBO Annual Meeting — Austin, TX

July 14, 2019

Rick Staisloff of rpk GROUP, Dave Rainey of Nuventive, and Nichol Lumoma, Arizona State University on Creating Data Informed Culture