Progress Report on Administrative Systems and Operation Task Force Recommendations
In Spring 2014 President Floyd, Provost Bernardo, and the Chancellors initiated plans to address longstanding academic and administrative issues within the multi-campus system. The Administrative Systems and Operations Task Force took up issues related to WSU’s administrative infrastructure. The Task Force assembled subcommittees to identify issues and recommend solutions in four areas: Finance, Administration, and Budget; Marketing and Communications; Information Technology Services; and Student Affairs/Enrollment Services. Each subcommittee presented short-term and long-term issues and recommendations. This report summarizes the progress made on those recommendations.
Information Technology Services
The Information Technology Services Subcommittee discovered that information technology services at the urban campuses have become decentralized with time. Because of this, the subcommittee focused on issues of communication, leadership, and future directions. The greatest amount of progress has been made on their recommendations. Specifically, WSU has taken the following steps:
- Creation of the Information Technology Executive Board (ITEB) and Information Technology Strategic Advisory Committee (ITSAC), with representation from administration, staff, and faculty, and across campuses. These groups have already been assigned the following tasks:
- Develop a strategic plan for Information Technology Services (ITS)
- Create a directory of experts and/or centers of excellence to facilitate information sharing across campuses
- Establish remote access as an enterprise service
- Consider establishing a system-wide wireless service set identifier
- Develop a method for ITS to provide enterprise architecture recommendations and guidance
- Streamline the site license acquisition process
- Initiation of discussion among the campuses on opportunities to improve WAN troubleshooting. The recent campus security incident has increased the frequency of these discussions.
- Global Campus/AMS is in the process of centralizing the scheduling of videoconference rooms with the Registrar. As part of this strategy, they are moving videoconferencing equipment out of specialized classrooms and into general university classrooms that have a maintenance budget.
- A cross-campus LMS communication group has been created that shares information and solutions about integration and management of the new Blackboard Learn system.
- Establishment of the Capital Planning Workgroup that involves ITS staff (both centrally and locally) in the design and construction of new buildings. This group has completed and provided detailed IT infrastructure standards for construction, and holds monthly meetings.
- Initial investigation of Spokane-area locations for a disaster recovery site, and involvement of WSU-Spokane in implementation of One Drive-based disaster recovery implementation. Note that further action on this cannot be taken until ITS receives targeted funding in the next biennial budget.
- ITS is implementing plans to migrate the Exchange email system to the Office365 cloud (where OneDrive resides) to improve email security.
- The subcommittee also recommends that WSU consider a redesign of the Exchange architecture, when it comes time to refresh the Exchange system, to pattern it after Active Directory and thus improve its functioning at the urban campuses.
- A model is needed for maintenance of videoconferencing equipment across the campuses.
Student Affairs and Enrollment Services
Student Affairs units across WSU campuses work fairly independently and effectively. They consult as necessary around key issues such as Title IX and student conduct. Challenges have primarily involved Enrollment Services operations. Like the Information Technology Services Subcommittee, the Student Affairs and Enrollment Services (SAES) Subcommittee found that student affairs operations are mostly independent across campuses, and so focused on improved coordination and sharing of resources. A considerable amount of progress has also been made on their recommendations, specifically:
- Greater involvement of the urban campuses in financial aid and work study decisions and processing, and increased local control over financial aid consortiums.
- Implementation of local processing of student applications, including provision of SAT/ACT scores to urban campuses.
- Implementation of 411 technology to improve information sharing and communication about admissions.
- Enhanced collaboration of all campuses at workshops for high school counselors.
- Decentralization of the process to defer the $200.00 tuition deposit.
- Establishment of weekly admissions meetings involving all campuses.
- Provision of names of urban-campus students who are carrying a balance to urban-campus staff for follow-up.
- Urban campuses now have the ability to waive late fees and can view description codes for negative student indicators and direct deposit.
- Posting of Chapter 33 (veterans) guarantees in a more timely fashion, which allows veterans with financial aid to get their funds more quickly.
- Student Financial Services is initiating service-level agreements with each campus
- Development of a shared marketing piece that can be used by all campuses with a consistent brand (anticipated availability in September 2015)
- Establishment of quarterly meetings for recruiting and marketing personnel (Integrated Recruitment Workgroup)
- Conducting coordinated recruiter training for representatives from all campuses.
- Development of a shared WSU recruitment philosophy: