Author: Lea Patterson

Finance + Faculty: Management Accounting in Higher Ed

Management accounting, as a discipline, is going through a resurgence.  Primarily driven by the huge increase in the amount of data available for analysis, financial professionals are needing to look beyond traditional business metrics and recognize the potential of embracing a wider set of data. Management accounting has been around for 100 years, so it’s […]

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From Whoa to Go in 7 weeks – an Analytic Model Implementation Case Study

Last year NACUBO released the results of their survey to understand the current status of analytics, where Business Officers would like to use analytics and barriers that institutional leaders face within the Education sector. As the results show below, Operational Analysis and Cost of Instruction top the list of areas that are in need of […]

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Higher Education Financial Stress Test

The Coronavirus is creating headlines around the world and here in Australia it’s having an impact on some universities who are delaying the start of the school year or starting the school year online initially.  There might also be a financial impact but hopefully not a permanent one, but what if there was a permanent […]

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Why is Math Cheaper than English?

This was a question posed by Steven Hemelt (UNC – Chapel Hill), Kevin Stange, Fernando Furquim, Andrew Simon (University of Michigan) and John Sawyer (University of Delaware) in their paper “Why is Math Cheaper than English? Understanding Cost Differences in Higher Education” https://www.nber.org/papers/w25314 Their “analysis reveals appreciable variation in the cost of delivering a unit […]

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Cost of Instruction at the University of Maryland

The following is an extract from this article in NACUBO Business Officer Magazine September 2019 by Margo Vanover Porter and discusses the Pilbara model at the University of Maryland. The model was implemented in 2017 with our US consulting partner, Grant Thornton and is updated on an annual basis.   After attending a NACUBO conference […]

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Pilbara Higher Ed Conference 2019

The Pilbara Higher Ed conference was held September 3-4 in Brisbane at the Rydges Hotel in Southbank. It was a great crowd and generated a lot of interesting discussions over the two day event. The focus of the conference was Data Driven Decision Making and in particular how cost and predictive models can be used […]

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New Academic Programs – Five Year Financial Forecasts in Minutes

A significant amount of time and effort goes into the development of a new program for a college. Unfortunately, the financial aspects of the new program tend not to get as much attention. In today’s environment it is becoming more and more important to ensure any new programs not only break-even but contribute positively to […]

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Upcoming Pilbara Conference: Keynotes Announced

This September 3-4, we will be hosting our Pilbara Users’ Conference entitled “Preparing for Change: Data Driven Decision Making.” The two-day event was created in response to the changes taking place in Higher Education with multiple external factors putting pressure on existing business models, not just in Australia but internationally as well. We are now […]

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Why is Traditional Accounting Failing Higher Education?

With Gary Cokins Traditional or Financial Accounting is essential for statutory and regulatory reporting for government agencies and the investor community. It is guided by Generally Accepted Accounting Principles (GAAP). It is best referred to as “external” financial accounting. But here is the problem: Colleges know in detail how much they spend; however, the vast […]

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The Alternative to Closing/Merging – Networking!

In my last post I identified that 14% of presidents think their college will close or merge in the next five years. With over 4,000 degree-granting institutions in the US, this could potentially mean that more than 400 colleges are at risk of closure or merging. In this post, Andrew Faulkner and I dig into […]

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