AASCU Consulting tailors our services to meet your institution’s unique needs and address what matters most to you. Our experienced consultants help college and university presidents, chancellors, and executive teams to overcome challenges and transform the institution.
STRATEGIC PLANNING & Execution
A good strategic plan should inform future growth, establish measurable goals and objectives and drive strategic investment. It provides a framework for decision making, evaluating risks and alternatives, and guiding daily work. Far too often, strategic plans are either so broad, making it hard to drive any transformative change, or are developed and put on the shelf with no clear path for execution. AASCU Consulting has helped institutions close the gaps.
We can help you to:
- Develop a strategic plan that communicates a compelling vision and provides strategic guiderails to focus your actions and reach the full potential of the institution.
- Turn strategy into results by executing on your plan, fostering real-time strategic decision making, and implement a process that consistently assesses new initiatives, risks, and alternatives against the institution’s priorities.
- Identify milestones, targets and metrics to assess progress, regularly calibrate the strategic plan, and focus the campus community on closing specific gaps in the strategic areas.
- Establish a transparent and inclusive budget and resource allocation process linked to your strategic plan.
Financial & Operational Effectiveness
The financial landscape for universities continues to provide pressures for identifying new revenue streams or cost efficiencies, and can change overnight as a result of legislative mandates and state budget appropriations.
We can help you to:
- Address revenue shortfalls by developing and implementing strategies to reduce expenditures/increase revenues, and evaluating academic and non-academic program areas.
- Evaluate the effectiveness and efficiency of financial and administrative processes and organizational structures.
- Establish a transparent and inclusive budget process linked to your institution’s strategic priorities.
- Evaluate your facility and space needs, then guide the development of a comprehensive campus plan.
- Evaluate risks and opportunities of public private partnerships to meet capital needs, provide alternative revenues, or meet other programmatic needs.
- Evaluate Athletics program needs, fiscal sustainability, and cost efficiency.
Organizational Assessment, Alignment & Transformation
Higher education institutions must position their organizations to embrace agility and become more resilient.
We can help you to:
- Examine your structures and processes to identify opportunities for a more agile, aligned, student centered organization.
- Evaluate and develop talent management and development strategies.
- Navigate changes and challenges through effective change management, communication, and organizational transformation
Even the most experienced leaders can benefit from professional development and coaching to enhance communication skills, improve performance, and boost confidence. We offer a seasoned individual from outside the institution with whom the president can have timely, useful, and confidential conversations outside of the regular governance structure.
- Meeting with the executive to (1) review the expectations and priorities; (2) to discuss the executive’s own perceptions of the job; and (3) to establish a plan for regular communication via email, Zoom/Skype, or phone.
- “Fit” between the client and the coach is key. Both parties should feel they are entering into a trust relationship that will be characterized by candor and confidentiality.
- In the course of their work together, the executive and coach will review any relevant materials pertaining to the state of the institution, assess the composition and “climate” of the executive’s team, and meet with colleagues, as needed.
- Consultation for newly appointed and experienced presidents and senior executives
- Performance reviews for presidents and senior executives based on 360-degree assessments and subsequent developmental strategies (and can be aligned with the institution/board policy for the evaluation of presidents)
LEADERSHIP ONBOARDING and Transition
Preparing for a leadership change can be daunting for any campus community. You’ll want a seamless transition that maintains a positive campus climate and identifies opportunities for continued growth and success.
We offer consultation and facilitation services for university boards, systems, presidents and their teams to keep your institution moving forward.
Our Six Phase Model for selecting, developing, evaluating, and retaining effective executive leadership includes:
- Environmental and institutional scanning to set up a successful search
- Search committee formulation, orientation, training and search process consultation
- “Transition-in” consultation for governing boards, system executives, and presidents to ensure a successful start for newly appointed presidents and chancellors
- Professional development consultation and facilitation for presidents, chancellors, and their teams
- Performance reviews for presidents, chancellors, and senior executives
- “Transition-out” consultation to ensure continuous effective institutional leadership as departing executives prepare their exit
- Leadership team retreat facilitation
- One-on-one coaching for team members
- Facilitation of annual goal setting and alignment of individual leadership portfolios with the priorities of the institution
- Advisory to teams on strategic decision making, team dynamics, rules of engagement, and cross divisional collaboration.
Your institution’s board members offer valuable perspectives to navigate the challenges facing higher education.
To help boards, as well as university systems, foundations, councils, or commissions, operate most effectively, our services include:
- Orientation and development, including performance assessments and self-assessments
- Enhancing relationships between boards and presidents
A successful presidency or chancellorship requires the fostering of a culture of shared governance which is one of higher education’s bedrock principles. Our consultants are well-versed in shared governance best practices and understand that every institution has its own shared governance DNA.
We can help you to:
- Inform governing board members of the essential nature of shared governance and how it works at your institution.
- Assess the shared governance climate at your institution and offer suggestions based on our experience and best practices.
- Align your shared governance and strategic planning activities.
EXTERNAL RELATIONS AND FUND DEVELOPMENT
Strong institutional ties with key stakeholders are critical: from faculty, staff, and students to alumni, parents, and government officials. We can help develop and strengthen those relationships to enhance fundraising, improve marketing strategies, and promote public support.
Our services include:
- Developing fundraising infrastructure, including annual giving, major donor and deferred giving, corporate and foundation support, and comprehensive campaigns
- Evaluating and improving your advancement organization, personnel, and programs
- Facilitating foundation and alumni board orientation, development, and assessment
- Professional development for alumni relations, communications, and governmental relations staff
- Assessing staff and program performance
Student lifecycle & ENROLLMENT MANAGEMENT
We provide comprehensive consulting and support to institutions experiencing enrollment and retention challenges.
We can help you with:
- Management and operational audits to review current organizational structures supporting enrollment and student success efforts. These audits analyze current procedures, review data capture and reporting systems, categorize staff skills, and provide recommendations for possible re-engineering of the entire enrollment operation.
- Procedure and data audits to analyze historical enrollment data to identify any issues with the inquiry, applicant, completion, and yield rates. This audit provides an analysis of current data systems used to capture, store, and retrieve enrollment and retention data.
ACADEMIC PLANNING AND DEVELOPMENT
Student success and degree completion is an important focus as you develop the best academic experience for your students. You want to prepare them for an economy and society that requires global literacy and to put them on the path to becoming engaged and responsible citizens.
We can help you with:
- Program assessment, prioritization, and improvement aligned with institutional goals
- Professional development programs and services for provosts, vice presidents, deans, and department heads
ACCREDITATION PLANNING AND FOLLOW-UP
As former presidents and chancellors, our associates have experienced the rigorous accreditation process of self-review, evidence-gathering and documentation, and external evaluation. We can help ensure a thorough review to position your institution for success.
Our accreditation services include:
- Preparation and organization
- Implementation of recommendations
- Merging accreditation and strategic planning