Foster good relationships with the IT department
Townsend says colleges will most likely have a successful software installation if they foster good relationships with their IT departments.
He says having good relationships with IT will get everyone on the same page during the install and create clearer understanding about how the software will be used.
“It’s really important to make sure you have a good working relationship with the central controlling entities on the campus, the IT group,” he says. “Their goals have to be well-laid out in terms of planning for a system that is integrated with so many different things and connects the different groups. It’s key to make sure you have good communication between those groups up front, a well-understood scope of work and a group that believes in the partnership and success of the operation.”
“Seasonally, we’ll hire about 1,500 students. We’re an important component of campus life because we’re providing them with jobs where they can commute to do what they’re doing. The management of that ramps up before each quarter and then slows down. We have this rotation that is happening. Managing that works very well with us with this centralized and highly automated system.”
– Randal Townsend, Director of Information Technology, Cal Poly Pomona Foundation
Use the Cloud for data storage
Miller says if colleges want to use software to promote a greener atmosphere on campus, they should consider supplementing it with the Cloud.
He says storing data on the Cloud helps cut energy costs that other systems need, which can be time consuming or harmful to the environment.
“That’s the biggest green strategy,” Miller says. “It does reduce your electronic footprint, it does consume less power. If you have backup systems, now you don’t have to have them. When I say backup systems I mean diesel generators. We still have a diesel generator, and when the financial system goes to Cloud services, we will be able to get rid of that diesel generator. That’s a big deal because…it’s not really kind to the environment.”
Aim for automation
Regan says colleges should first consider what their current process is doing; if it requires manual steps, they should select a software system that will promote automation.
He says a system that is more automatic will weed out old processes that are time consuming and not-so-environmentally-friendly.
“Any time people are doing this in a manual fashion, that’s an immediate red flag,” Regan says. “I think anyone that wants to look at this should start to document their current process. You want to take a look at a company like Kronos to say, how can they help me automate this and how they can help me eliminate processes that we do today that are non-green, and how can technology help us streamline that to help us be more compliant? That’s a really good starting process.”
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