2019 NACUBO Integrating Analytics Forum

2019 NACUBO Integrating Analytics Forum


The NACUBO Analytics Conference focusses on data management and analytics. Presenters, and participants, are driven by the importance of accurate data, efficient data collection and effective analysis. Critically, they seek out and value tools that can advance the current, and future, business needs of their higher education institutions.

Regardless of their institution size, or sophistication in their data management processes and policies, conference delegates report that insightful reports and outcomes benefiting the day to day, or year on year, operations and strategies are the key to success.

This year the conference was held in Orlando Florida, which gave many of those attending respite from the early onslaught of winter which occurred in most northern states and eastern provinces of Canada.

Among the Conference presenters, we are pleased to report that the 3 most sophisticated institutions, in terms of data analytics and decision making, are founded on our (Pilbara/GT) models. Johnson Community County College (JCCC), New York Institute of Technology (NYIT) and University of Maryland (UMD) all presented on the ways they used data analytics to advance  their respective institutions by  fully understanding  the financial implications of their decision-making.

Let me take you through a brief overview.

Johnson Community County College (JCCC)

JCCC was an early North American adopter of the Pilbara/GT solution. JCCC commenced their journey in early 2016 when GT/Pilbara configured their first cost model for the entire organization. As their model was refined over the past 3 years it reached a point where the senior executive team was confident that it would provide them with answers to their more pressing questions. As we know, the cost of administration overheads in higher education institutions is an ongoing issue, so JCCC used the model to determine how much their administrative areas were costing each student on a per credit hour basis. Additionally, they set about assessing the impact of reducing sections/increasing class sizes to help offset their decline in student credit hours for the institution as a whole.

New York Institute of Technology (NYIT)

NYIT commenced their journey with the Pilbara/GT model in late 2015. Over the period leading up to late 2018 early 2019 NYIT worked to understand their model and the processes that underpinned its configuration. Once comfortable with their understanding of the data and model workings, they  used the model to determine the total revenue, cost and margin of expanding their Health Professions program.  Although always aware the program did well on a direct cost basis, it was not until the Pilbara model provided the “Total cost/margin”, that they were able  to spark the ignition  and expand the program.  As a result of really understanding the financial picture, they are now constructing a new building to support this expanded program.

University of Maryland (UMD)

Bringing new programs and courses to fruition is always a difficult task. Balancing a belief that a course might be of value,  versus the reality of the financial picture that will ensue once a program is up and running,  can be daunting for any organization. University of Maryland (UMD) began their journey with our model in mid 2017. In a relatively short space of time their team has developed a clear understanding of the model methodology, makeup and configuration to give the University Executive sufficient confidence to use the model to evaluate the total cost of bringing on new Programs. Prior to undertaking this modelling UMD had no informed understanding of the total cost associated with adding new courses to support a new program.

Getting started on your analytics journey?

Contact us to assist your organization to start informing your day to day, and strategic decision making through data analytics. The Pilbara/GT modelling process is your starting point to gather your key data into one system in an organized and cleansed format.

Michael Skopal is a Partner at Pilbara Group and is living in Canada/North America – contact him on (240) 383 7468 for a conversation or email (mike.skopal@pilbaragroup.com) on how Pilbara/GT modelling can benefit the decision making, and outcomes, of your higher education organization.