How You Can Improve Student Service While Cutting Administrative Costs

Every year, students enroll in universities with the expectation that their institutions will be as technologically progressive as the commercial world. And students aren’t the only ones putting the pressure on higher education.

Last year, the White House put colleges and universities across the country “on notice.” The President has stressed that tuition rates cannot continue to rise, emphasizing that “higher education . . . is an economic imperative that every family in America should be able to afford.”

To succeed in today’s competitive and rapidly changing educational environment, the ability to be agile, efficient and cost-effective is becoming increasingly important at colleges and universities around the world. Back-office technology such as Laserfiche enterprise content management (ECM) can help institutions address the needs of today’s tech-centric students without compromising important administrative goals.

Benefits of ECM
Institutions that use Laserfiche: 

  • Increase collaboration and information sharing—without compromising information security. Stringent privacy laws dictate that colleges and universities protect student and faculty information. Laserfiche stores this information in a secure document repository that limits access by user, folder, document and/or data field. Monica Baccardax, IT Project Manager for the Faculty of Medicine at Dalhousie University Medical School, explains, “Laserfiche enables you to set the access rights so that information is available only to authorized staff. In addition, the Laserfiche redaction option serves as a useful tool to black out any information that cannot be shared with unauthorized personnel.” 
  • Improve student service. Digitizing student records reduces daily operational costs as well as the expenses associated with disaster recovery. At the same time, having access to those digital records on mobile devices improves communication between students and staff. For example, the Academic Services Office at the University of Oklahoma’s College of Arts & Sciences uses Laserfiche Mobile to enable students and academic advisors to meet anywhere on campus and access electronic documents, increasing student awareness of academic standing and contractual stipulations. 
  • Enhance productivity by automating business processes. Instant search and retrieval eliminates wasted staff time spent looking for missing documents. In addition, workflow functionality automates collaborative business processes such as accounts payable processing, contract management and financial aid processing. Lauri Reilly, Accounts Payable Manager at the Chancellor’s Office for California State University, explains, “In the past, reconciling differences between the 1099 and total payments to a vendor took forever. It was just amazing to me that I could sit at my desk and actually see the images in Laserfiche, and make an immediate determination whether or not a particular invoice was reportable without having to get up and search through files.”
  • Minimize ongoing maintenance demands for IT personnel. By implementing Laserfiche ECM as a shared service, colleges and universities are able to consolidate IT functions to one location, reducing costs across the board. According to Judith Lewis, Senior IT Manager of IT Solutions and Support at Texas A&M University, “By providing a feature-rich implementation at an affordable price point, Texas A&M is able to make available economies of scale and document sharing that individual departments could not approach by themselves. This is value delivery at its best.”

For more information about the benefits of document management from these schools and more, request your free copy of Quicker, Better, Safer: Higher Education today!

by Bryan Belden
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