The pandemic has spurred the digitization of processes within every industry, but it hit institutions of higher education harder than most. Digital transformation (Dx) is essential, not only to provide services safely today, but to keep up with evolving student expectations. Higher education leadership needs to tackle key questions like . . . “How do I build a more connected student experience? How can I get faculty and staff on board and enthusiastic about digital transformation of their departments? How can digital transformation simplify processes for students?"

 

Defining Digital Transformation as it Applies to Higher Education

EDUCAUSE provides us with a great definition – “Digital transformation is a series of deep and coordinated culture, workforce, and technology shifts that enable new educational and operating models and transform an institution's business model, strategic directions, and value proposition.”

 

An Evolving, 3-Step Process

Step 1 - Digitization

Student facing forms, applications and other documents that used to be distributed in paper form via the sneaker net are now stored and completed online. Records and reports are ideally stored on the cloud and can be accessed from anywhere. Digitization has occurred gradually over recent decades, but paper forms still exist on campuses across the country, despite the challenges with COVID-19.

Step 2 - Digitalization

The process of digitalization is the collective utilization of technology for specific operational purposes, like research, administration functions, payroll, procurement, or online delivery of courses. Many of our customers have undergone digitalization of their departments, which offers encouraging green shoots of progress. The difference between digitalization and the final step: digital transformation is that Dx demands a coordinated effort to efficiently implement digitization for every practical purpose throughout the organization. 

Step 3 - Digital Transformation

This concept might be described as a global movement within and throughout an organization. A movement to transform the workforce's attitude, the company's culture, an effort to coordinate every department.  To steer, in this case, an entire educational institution's digitalization efforts in a strategic direction to increase value and deliver a better experience across the student journey from recruitment to graduation. This takes organizational willpower, strong leadership, and an increased level of cross-departmental coordination. 

Digital transformation can be a daunting task for leadership and IT teams, a time-consuming effort at reprogramming, of continuing support as staff members strive to fully understand their role in adapting to and driving change. It must be more than a task for the IT team if it's truly going to be successful, though IT has a strategic position as both a driver and implementer. Ultimately, institutional leadership must sponsor an organization-wide mandate. Organizational silos must be busted to deliver lasting change.

A global solution for a movement encompassing every department

By investing in a platform built for driving digital transformation in Higher Ed, designed for the needs of a higher education institution, implementation can be accomplished without extensive IT resources. A low-code/no-code platform requires no software development expertise to digitalize processes across departments. With the right coordination, business users and students alike can help the organization make great strides in Dx.  

BP Logix offers a simple, low-code/no-code solution for bringing your Digital Transformation strategy together through efficient digitalization across departments.

 

Some ways our Higher Ed customers have utilized our platform to drive Dx:

  • To create a seamless experience for students in enrollment and registration by connecting applicable data from different legacy platforms, to surface elsewhere to students in online forms. .
  • To automate manual HR processes.
  • To save hours of development time automating financial applications.

Benefits backed by customer testimonials:  

John Rezendes, Director of IS Operations at Stanislaus State commented on the system's simplicity:

“Process Director gives us a suite of tools we can use without needing a lot of development experience. It's cutting development time at least by half to get an electronic form and a backend workflow up and running and working for our students on campus.”

 

Eddie Serrano, Deputy Director for Research Business and Operations at UNC mentioned the ease of coordinating data.

"With Process Director, we were able to quickly modify existing financial forms — Expense Reimbursement, Invoice Payment, Purchase Order Request — to track COVID-19-relatedexpenses." . . . "Our new workflow also allows us to easily seek other necessary approvals according to procedural changes instituted by the University."

 The easiest way to implement digital transformation is through the combination of an organization wide initiative and the right automation platform designed for Higher Ed. 

Interested in learning more about how your university can use a low-code platform to jump start your digital transformation initiative? View a demo of Process Director. Watch our webinar "Process Automation Solution Tailored for Higher Education" .

 

Written by BP Logix