We often speak about disparate systems getting in the way of efficient and effective working at institutions, but disengaged sectors are one of the biggest blockers to achieving success.
It’s easy to forget that there is one common goal throughout every department in an institution. Although IT and student experience teams may sit in different parts of the building, campus or even world, it is key that communication and cohesion are prioritised.
Recent studies into building an intelligent campus all conclude that having a clear vision across the senior leadership team is vital to success. It isn’t just siloed data that needs bringing together for a stronger outcome, it’s siloed teams.
There are people within an organisation who can provide data that can detect how students are performing. Others are able to understand what students need and what to do when they are at risk, and there are also people who understand the impact that this has on profitability and reputation.
These people very rarely work together.
Making a conscious effort to book in time with colleagues from other departments has a positive impact on performance across an institution. Examples include:
- Procurement and budget holders are able to see more of a reason to invest in projects
- Bringing ideas together doubles budgets to turn ideas into a reality
- A wider breadth of knowledge reduces risks
- Understanding departmental differences will smooth conversations when it comes to decision making
With reduced funding across the whole of the education sector, budgets are tighter than ever. Instead of coping with a smaller amount of money, joining up with other departments to collaborate on larger, all-encompassing projects will prove to be more valuable and will enable your institution's vision to be realised.
Understanding every factor in giving students the best possible experience doesn’t come from one individual or team within your college or university, it’s a mixture of all. We have listed a few tips on communicating with other departments and building the best relationships possible across your whole organisation.
- Establish a foundation – understand why you are working together, what is the common goal you are looking to achieve and how can all skillsets come together to achieve that
- Consistent communication – Whether it be a 10-minute call once a fortnight or a meeting every week, booking time in calendars to discuss the strategy is essential
- Use time wisely – Creating working relationships is great, but making sure that those relationships are productive ones will achieve results
- Cut out the jargon – Different professions understand different ways of talking about it, stick to easily digestible wording that will give everyone a clear understanding of the topic discussion
- Be the example – Connecting departments is difficult, many people are stuck in their ways and only comfortable staying within their department. Be the person to make a difference and deliver the next ground-breaking project
Want to learn about improving engagement and retention figures by connecting your campus?