AASCU Innovations Exchange
Your Source for innovation in Public Higher Education

Operational Efficiency

Ad Hoc Budget Committee Dedicated to Communication and Cost Saving Opportunities Eastern Connecticut State University Project Description: Eastern Connecticut State University’s President Elsa Nunez established the institution’s Ad Hoc Budget Committee in January 2009 to provide assistance in addressing the fiscal challenges of higher education in a faltering economy.  The committee includes representation from each bargaining unit, faculty, and administration providing an environment for open communication on all budget related issues. Using the resources of the committee, we are able to discover innovative ways to manage the budget while operating in a transparent environment. Read more >>

Boosting Efficiency, Savings and Service with a Centralized Contract Management Software Solution Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi Project Description: Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi (A&M-Corpus Christi) implemented a contract software management database solution resulting in a centralized repository of all contracts including audit trails stored in digital format that have the tools to quickly access important information, generate reports, execute contracts and receive automatic reminders of critical dates all at once without having to track contract folders and deal with misfiled or missing paperwork. The primary beneficiaries of this system are the contract, purchasing, and accounts payable department and our customers; i.e., internal departmental managers and the many external vendors, entities and organization with which the university does business.  The system has increased efficiency and has contributed to both cost avoidance and cost reduction. Read more >>

Business Process Improvement Initiatives Fresno State University Project Description: In the summer of 2009, Fresno State began the journey of business process improvement.  Since then, the university has undertaken two rounds of improvements, first in academic personnel, human recourses, and payroll functions using a corporate consulting model; second in a wider set of processes/products using the Lean University methodology. Each project was led by a team facilitator with support from a project sponsor. Read more >>

Collaborative Health and Wellness Strategy to Reverse Rising Healthcare Costs Central Michigan University Project Description: Central Michigan University employee group leaders and administrators are reversing rising healthcare costs by combining common purchasing and consumerism methods with an innovative gainsharing wellness program. Employees who complete four wellness components* receive their “share” of a fiscal year-end positive balance in CMU’s self-funded health plans. Plan benefits rank among the strongest for Michigan universities, while annual medical and prescription drug plan costs have declined. CMU and its health plan members have avoided $11 million over the past five years in comparison to 11 of the state’s other public universities. *Components include an annual health risk assessment, exercise, annual physical, and wellness screenings/programs. Read more >>

IT Shared Services California State University, Northridge Project Description: At the Information Technology Advisory Committee (ITAC) meetings in May and June 2011, the Chief Information Officers (CIOs) at each of the 23 California State University (CSU) campus reaffirmed their commitment to consider transformational changes by pursuing shared-services, in response to the need for sustained focus on information technology (IT) cost savings and efficiencies and also to enable IT to be appropriately responsive to ongoing requests for innovative technology solutions to support the California State University mission.  New technological capabilities such as virtualization, cloud computing, and advanced networks readily enable the delivery of information technology services which leverage consolidation, standardization, and sharing of infrastructure and applications to reduce provisioning time, complexity, and cost. ITAC Statement of Direction:The CSU intends to pursue a system-wide strategy to use shared IT services whenever possible to generate cost savings, facilitate service improvement, and create new areas of service through leveraging existing CSU campus resources. Read more >>

Partnering to Boost Cost Savings and Quality in Residential Network Services The College at Brockport, State University of New York Project Description: Facing the financial and labor intensive challenges of owning a student data network, Brockport researched numerous avenues to save the campus money and time.  An analysis concluded the best option for Brockport was to invest in a partnership with a provider who offered campus residential network (ResNet) services.Through this partnership model, Brockport ensures they are always innovating and staying ahead of student connectivity needs with the partner’s built-in technology road map.  Brockport also achieves significant cost-savings, given that their partner assumes the up-front capital investment costs of all equipment needed to set up the network. Read more >>

Reduce Waste and Printing Costs in Records Management without Spending a Fortune Texas A&M University - Corpus Christi Project Description: In April 2009, Texas A&M University – Corpus Christi (TAMUCC) began development of the Report Upload Bifurcation Engine (RUBE) system to receive the continuous stream of bundled report files from BPP/FAMIS feeds, and to perform the complex task of separating and distributing individual BPP/FAMIS reports to their respective imaging repositories in secure digital format.  The primary benefactors of these systems are the Accounting and Payroll departments and these benefits extend to their own customer base in the form of more timely access to reports in a collaborative format.  In addition to cost savings in paper, printing supplies, mailings/postage, and the recapture of prime office space from storage of old documents, these departments experience a more efficient use of staff time and abilities. Read more >>