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Ryan Piurek
University Communications

Last modified: Friday, October 1, 2010

IU to conduct benchmarking study of administrative processes

October 1, 2010

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -- Indiana University is launching a university-wide study of its administrative staffing and service levels as part of an on-going effort to improve the way it conducts business.

Details of the study were presented today (Oct. 1) to the IU Board of Trustees by Kathleen McNeely, associate vice president and executive director for financial management services.

The study will enable IU to draw comparisons with similar universities, as well as private sector companies, around the country, McNeely said.

The administrative benchmarking project will be conducted by The Hackett Group, headquartered in Miami, Fla., a global consulting firm that specializes in benchmarking studies and advising large organizations on best practices in organization and structure. Hackett has performed similar studies with over 3,400 organizations around the world, including the Universities of Michigan, Missouri, North Carolina, and Virginia, and Yale University.

The study will assess IU's activities in human resources, payroll, student services, communications and marketing, and the Bloomington physical plant operations. The benchmarking study will include collecting data on staffing levels, workloads, transaction volumes, quality indicators and cost drivers for each of these areas.

IU President Michael A. McRobbie said that using an outside firm with much expertise in benchmarking will ensure that IU is exposed to the best practices and most optimal organization structures in use by world-class performers.

"This is part of a continuing and ongoing effort to restructure all of our administrative processes in a way that gets us maximum value for the dollars we spend for these services," McRobbie said. "We need to be sure that we are conducting our administrative processes at the same high level of excellence as we expect of our academic departments."

The work will get under way in mid-October and is expected to be concluded by late March or early April.

A steering committee that includes administrators and faculty from various departments and campuses has been created to oversee this process.