Cayce Will, director of the Office of Information Services, attended the EDUCAUSE Annual Conference held October 31 – November 3rd in Philadelphia, PA. EDUCAUSE is a non-profit association and the foremost community of IT leaders and professionals committed to advancing higher education. Cayce attended sessions covering enabling data driven decision making, strategic leadership and partnership in higher education, and IT governance and policy. Top IT Issues in Higher Education fell within four themes, Students, Data, Security, and Planning and Funding. Information Security was the number one issue again, for the third year running, while student success, and developing institution-wide IT strategies, came in second and third.
What You Can Do Today!
- 5 Minute Action: With every conversation
today, try your best to just listen.
- Congratulate your team for a job well done
and reflect on how we can be even better going
- Reflect on your personality type and think
about how you can manage your strengths and
weaknesses in different situations or around
different types of people in your team.
The University Policy Office (UPO) would like to announce the issuance of Policy 2.1013 Preferred First Name.
In a manner consistent with the University’s educational mission and related research, service, and outreach activities and in order to support Goal 1 of the University’s Strategic Plan, Registrars and Human Resources have collaborated to develop and issue this new policy, published on the University Policy Office website. This policy inteneded to provide guidelines for students, faculty and staff who wish to use a name other than their legal name to identify themselves across university systems, where feasible.
The University Policy Office (UPO) would like to announce the issuance of Policy 2.5006 Use of Reserved University Outside Grounds.
In a manner consistent with the University’s educational mission and related research, service, and outreach activities and in order to support Board of Control Policies 7.7, 12.2, and 12.3, Student Activities, Facilities Management, and Public Safety and Police Services have collaborated to develop and issue this new policy. The policy is intended to provide guidelines for affiliated and non-affiliated groups and persons who wish to use designated outside areas on Michigan Tech’s campus.
This new policy also covers Distribution of Promotional Materials and will replace current Policy 2.5004 Distributing of Promotional Materials.
Sometimes continuous improvement results can take some time to materialize. But it’s important to remember to focus on the goals you’re trying to accomplish, and to trust that lean process improvement methods can and do result in reaching the tangible goals that we have in our work.
In 2012, as part of a grant Michigan Tech received through the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service [http://www.fmcs.gov/internet/], we were able to bring consultants to campus to help us to continue on our lean journey as a University. Our grant application had proposed an innovative approach to enhancing relations between management and union-represented staff via a rigorous series of Lean training sessions. Lean as a management method is particulary well-suited to accomplishing such a goal, because it is an approach that focuses on the value of each employee, at all levels and within all units. We believed that our proposal would contribute to improving communication and relations between employees at all levels across campus.
I was a co-PI on this grant, and participated as a “student” in most of the training sessions. One of the exercises we were asked to do was to facilitate a kaizen (“improvement”) event to solve a challenging process issue in our work. Having recently taken on policy administration at the University, I had become aware of many areas within the policy development process that seemed to cause confusion for customers (policy developers) and for the campus community in general.
We assembled a small group of individuals that included me, and 3 or 4 additional people who served as facilitators, subject matter experts, and customers. From this single kaizen event, we were able to identify some key improvements that needed to happen:
We needed a dedicated staff member who was primarily responsible for overseeing policy at the University.
- We needed to critically review the current policy development process, and identify ways we could eliminate wasteful or unnecessary steps.
- We needed a new website, that included tools for policy developers as well as some “educational” pieces about what policy is (and isn’t).
- We needed to continually educate the university community on the policy development process, and provide some outreach and support to policy developers along the way.
Most of these goals hinged on the need to hire that staff member. I am now pleased to say that in 2014, after a lot of thought and planning, we were able to hire a University Policy Coordinator, Lori Weir, who has jumped right in to making these kaizen-originated goals a reality. She is also constantly looking for ways to continuously improve how we manage policies at Michigan Tech, and I’m looking forward to working with her to realize our vision of what a Policy Office should be.
Thank you for visiting our new website, and please don’t hesitate to get in touch if you have any questions, suggestions, or would like help getting started on a new policy.
3/18/2015 – The Human Resources Office issued Policy 2.6020 Hiring for Work Outside the United States.
This new policy supports University compliance and accountability with U.S. and foreign country tax laws and regulations when hiring individuals to perform work outside the United States. All departments who may need to hire individuals to work outside the country should familiarize themselve with this policy.
3/13/2015 – The University Policy Office serves as an institution-wide resource for policy and policy development. Members of the University Policy Office are excited to introduce our new website (especially the new Policy Development Toolkit), and to be able to offer assistance to policy-making units and individuals across all university departments.
Please contact Lori Weir at 487-2980 if you have any policy questions, or to offer feedback about the website.