Shared services, better student experience

By AACC 21st Century Center Staff

A new Enterprise Resource Management project across five colleges will increase break down barriers and silos.

Five New Mexico community colleges are embarking on a partnership that will transform the student experience.

Clovis Community College, Central New Mexico Community College, Northern New Mexico College, San Juan College and Santa Fe Community College are working together to develop a single, shared system of student, continuing education, workforce, financial and human resources services. This Enterprise Resource Management (ERP) project is the first of its kind in the nation, according to a press release.

“About three years ago, as the leadership of these institutions talked about the biggest challenges we were facing, it was clear that it was critical to address our ERP and student information systems,” Clovis Community College President Charles Nwankwo said. “We realized we could and should explore this collaboratively.”

The plan received endorsement from New Mexico Independent Colleges, the New Mexico Higher Education Department and institutional leaders.

Prior to the pandemic, the colleges’ leaders acknowledged that a new approach was not only necessary, but imperative. That new approach has become the Shared Services Enterprise Resource Planning system, which will eliminate the need for multiple applications for admission or employment; reduce duplication of student and employee records; streamline student transfer; provide academic programming and staff reinforcements when needed; increase interaction with prospective and current students, community members, business partners, public officials; and more.

Simply said, the Shared Services ERP will eliminate obstacles for students.

All five colleges will share one system while protecting personal information and managing data in a secure environment. And to further advance the project and provide guidance, the group is in the process of forming a nonprofit.

The solution will provide students more flexibility and allow the colleges to improve communications and relationships with students, faculty, staff and their communities. The five colleges will share decision-making, data and processes, resulting in more effective and efficient operations and cost savings all while maintaining their independence which allows them to directly address the unique workforce needs in their own communities.

The project has involved multiple teams comprised of representatives from each college with expertise in specific areas. The collaborative recently solicited proposals from vendors and system implementers to provide a comprehensive ERP solution. They are planning on a phased implementation.

Is your college collaborating with another to increase efficiency and cut costs? Sound off at LinkedIn.

AACC 21st Century Center Staff

is a contributor to the 21st-Century Center.