Three members of the HSD Project Team at the May 2016 kick-off celebration of Zipline: Josh Bisetti, Megan Tedell-Hlady, Heather Rieck

UW Connect 

Institutional Data & Analysis ticketing system enables faster turn around of data requests from across campus

A software management and ticketing system – UW Connect – has improved responses to data requests from across campus in a systematic and timely manner 

Institutional Data & Analysis maintains and analyzes the data related to every metric across campus: enrollment, compensation, peer benchmarking, and ranking submissions to periodicals such as US News & World Report and The Chronicle of Higher Education. They also respond to numerous ad hoc requests from faculty and administrative leadership. 

Previously, when ad hoc requests for data were made to support a news story, a speech by given by President Cauce, or an External Relations press release, a request would arrive in an Outlook inbox shared by the Institutional Data & Analysis team. The team would typically respond in a timely fashion but without a clear process (or electronic tracking system), so it was difficult to flag specific items as urgent. As a result, additional follow-up was required and there were times the team had to scramble to meet deadlines.

With the Winter 2017 implementation of the UW Connect process and tracking system, Institutional Data & Analysis has been able to streamline these types of requests.  When requests are recorded in UW Connect, the team can now flag specific ones as higher priority and escalate this work.  Additionally, patterns in the types of data generally needed for these requests have been identified and instead of building queries from scratch, scripts have been developed that can be run quickly or adapted to respond.

Faster turnaround time for data requests – without reinventing the wheel 

The outcome of this collaboration has been improved communication among the teams.

Changes have also helped the team develop templates of the most commonly needed data inquiries

According to Institutional Data & Analysis Director Erin Guthrie, “The outcome of this collaboration has been improved communication among the teams and allowing our staff to provide data in a more timely manner, ultimately getting to the point where data and analysis that would be of value to a particular group can be anticipated and proactively offered.” 

A tenured faculty member reflected on the impact of this improvement in the 2017 TAP Customer Survey: “I have been impressed with the rapid increase in available data. The team is amazingly responsive when given suggestions of new parameters to include.” 

The Institutional Data & Analysis team is now better able to anticipate and respond to specific requests on a scheduled or cyclical basis. They can even go above and beyond the request to suggest other data elements or points that might be appropriate for media or speeches.