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In our last post, we noted that change requires tough decisions. And higher education’s tough decisions in this moment will cover the full range of academic programs and administrative services.

When looking at opportunities within the administrative services portfolio, it’s important to consider not only cost savings, but also the ‘pain points’ presented when administrative services become an obstacle, and the institution’s readiness to embrace the service change. This more holistic approach to administrative services optimization helps to create an action plan with an eye toward good change management.

A recent rpk project captured this combination of service enhancement, pain point elimination and cost savings well.  The institution captured $6.5 million in savings (over 5% of the annual operating budget), addressed longstanding service obstacles, and achieved needed restructuring of IT and student services. This work included a multi-year action plan, supporting clear direction to campus stakeholders and appropriate oversight at the senior staff and Board level.

Administrative Services Review

At rpk GROUP, our change management approach includes the use of our Implementation Challenge Index. This index plots each opportunity based on the potential savings and implementation difficulty. In this way, ‘quick wins’ can be identified to create momentum and realistic expectation setting occurs regarding the likely pace of change.

Learn more about rpk’s approach to administrative services optimization here.