Both traditional (age 14-24) and non-traditional (age 25+) students are increasingly choosing hybrid and online programs offered by colleges and universities to earn degrees and other credentials. There are more than 36,000 accredited, fully-online degree programs offered by public and private institutions (IPEDS). Trends suggest that there will be more students learning exclusively online and these students will have more program choices.
At most public and many private institutions, online programs are managed by divisions, departments or colleges that operate in parallel with the other academic units at the institution. These Global Campuses (GC) or Departments/Colleges of Professional, Continuing and Online Studies (PCO Studies) have a distinctive role and often operate under a unique set of institutional policies. Those who lead these entities face different kinds of challenges than those leading in other academic units.
Leaders of GC’s or PCO Studies are required to operate at scale while ensuring that learning outcome goals are met and that the quality of learning is high. They are tasked with building and staffing new courses and programs quickly in response to market needs and they often have to manage faculty, staff and administrators that work entirely remotely. And their enrollments are growing fast.
One way these leaders can help ensure that their school flourishes while quality is preserved and costs are controlled is to automate and centralize their academic operations.
A key component of academic operations is faculty management. Faculty Management Systems may include functionality around recruiting, onboarding, staffing, workload, evaluations, contracting and professional development for faculty. These systems may also include a faculty portal where faculty can view and manage information and workflows related to their teaching and other professional work. A system or platform that automates and centralizes faculty workflows and information creates greater efficiency and saves schools money, especially, as their enrollments grow and additional faculty are needed.
Hiring high-performing faculty is essential to high-quality learning but recruiting large numbers of skilled and appropriately credentialed faculty can be difficult and expensive. A system that includes a resource that can help source talent and provide qualified faculty will pay dividends.
Once faculty members are hired, having a system for onboarding and continuing to engage with them is also important. Offering a common platform to share the institution’s mission and to help faculty understand the importance of their work in achieving that mission is meaningful. Continuing to equip faculty with regular teaching and learning programming and professional development can promote engagement and quality.
Finally, providing faculty a single place to view and manage their information and workflows related to course staffings, workloads and teaching agreements can make it easier for faculty to navigate their way at the institution resulting in higher levels of faculty retention and engagement.
The leaders of GC’s and PCO Studies are managing units that are growing quickly, and they need to recruit and manage faculty in an affordable and scalable way. An academic operations platform can help them manage faculty and bring their staff and administrators together for greater efficiency, heightened transparency, deeper insights and increased collaboration.
A no code ERP for Academic Operations
APL nextED is the first ERP built to support faculty, staff and academic leaders and academic operations in one place. Our no code solution integrates with your existing systems and provides an affordable way to fill in the functional gaps and complete the higher education ERP ecosystem. Contact us to learn more about our comprehensive platform.