From cloning of student data in2005 to 95% online registration in 2011: a merger success story Marie Muller, Tinus van Zyl and Gert van Wyk April 2012
Historical Background• The University of Johannesburg (UJ) was established in 2005 → SA Merger legislation• UJ is the result of the incorporation of two former Vista University campuses, the Rand Afrikaans University (established in 1967) and the Technikon Witwatersrand (established in 1925)• SA Merger Guidelines → Academic Administration• Five pre-merger campuses Bunting Campus (TWR) Kingsway Campus (RAU) Doornfontein Campus (TWR) Soweto Campus (Vista) East Rand Campus (Vista) → UNISA
Merger challenges: Academic Administration• Legacy practices → transform to unity and campus equivalence• Student Data System → unify by “cloning” of data• Alignment of student/academic administration policies, procedures, regulations, etc.• Ensure smooth transition from pre-merger to UJ• Management of pipeline students and legacy student cultures, practices, values, etc.• Developing a model of student academic administration governance → to achieve excellence as reflected in the external audit results
Departmental facts1. Why was Student Enrolment Centre (SEC) established • To improve governance • To speed up administrative processes by centralisation • To give the student a “one stop” experience2. Staff A total of 39 permanent staff mostly based on Kingsway Campus with offices on each of the other three campuses.
Departmental facts (cont.)3. Services Acceptance of application forms, capturing of this information on ITS, issuing of student and staff access cards, scanning of documents (now outsourced), selection of students according to faculty criteria, supply of information to prospective students and answering of queries both in person and telephonically, assistance to International students(compliance)4. Special Projects • Online applications • Shortened biographical detail with reasons for non admittance • Late applications in January each year will be assisted via a Mobi Site.
Departments within Student Enrolment CentreContact Centre: Comprises of Information desk for walk in students Call centre for telephonic queriesBiographics Department: Comprises of Data Capturing of application forms Scanning of all documents Issuing of student and staff access cardsSelections Department: Comprises of Selectors handling selections for 6 of our 9 facultiesInternational Compliance Office: Comprises of Staff on each campus to deal with compliance issues.
StatisticsContact Centre: (2011)Visitors through the gates (including more than 94 000walk-ins in January alone) - 311 904MyFuture queries - 9 466Posted Items - 11 398Calls handled by Call Centre - 216 426Biographics Department:Year Applications Applicants2009 66 117 50 4442010 83 101 61 9152011 99 294 67 1562012 105 000 85 000
Statistics (cont.)Selections Office:Established in the middle of 2010 when staff placementwas finalised.Handled 70 000 selections(declined, accepted, conditionallyaccepted) between 6 staff members.International Compliance Office:Students receive personal attention regarding their specialneeds for applying to UJ.
STUDENT ENROLMENT CENTRE 2012 PROCESS FLOW METROFILE/ ONLINE FACULTY/ INTERNATIONAL EXTRA CURRICULAR SELECTIONS OFFICE BIOGRAPHICS CORPORATE APPLICATION DEPARTMENT OFFICE DEPARTMENT GOVERNANCE UNDERGRADUATES Applications screened and sorted Applications that Metrofile collects by SEC passed pre- Applications that application forms – screening are sent passed pre- scan and upload to Application routed Selection done on Applications that Letter sent to client for pre-selection selection are ImageNow to correct faculty ITS and ImageNow failed pre- screening/selection captured and put on Online Application are captured on electronic control made by applicant SHORT BIO list Applications Project routed to relevant POSTGRADUATES monitored and Faculty/Department via controlled by Applications put on Applications with qualification code Metrofile collects ImageNow Applications sorted Application routed to Postgraduate SEC Postgraduate control captured with qualification code. application forms – per faculty Postgraduate queue - staff member. list Applications without qualification scan and upload to ImageNow department code captured under generic code. ImageNow does selection and sends out Online Application correspondence made by applicant Applications sorted Applications with qualification code Metrofile collects Applications put onCURRICULAR captured with qualification code. application forms – Project routed to relevant per faculty electronic control list Applications without qualification scan and upload to Faculty/Department via department does selection and EXTRA code captured under generic code. ImageNow ImageNow sends out correspondence Online Application made by applicant INTERNATIONAL Application handed in at Application screened by Applications Metrofile collects SEC offices – Walk in Applications put on International Office captured on ITS. NB application forms – International electronic control list – Must be captured scan and upload to Projects routed Office does Application received from department/ ImageNow selection and under Generic Code to relevant faculty/post sends out Project automatically routed International to International queue – by queue correspondance Online Application identifying the passport made by applicant number March 2012 2012/13 Application Procedure
Achievements• Documents are not as easily lost – successful incorporation of ImageNow (document management system).• Easier to track where the application is in the process.• The process is much faster (20 day turn around time).• All relevant staff have access to the documents.• Consistency achieved in the centralising of selections for six faculties.• Standardisation of communication to applicants.• Status check on the UJ website.• The empowerment of call centre staff to access and issue relevant information.
Online Registration System• Developed in 2008 and piloted in 2009• Focus was on the development of a system which: • was user friendly, reduced the registration time spent per student and alleviated resource requirements • incorporated all the standard registration checks and validations (e.g. pre & co-requisites, grade 12 endorsement, timetable clashes) • enhanced Academic Administration Governance• In 2010, 86% online registration achieved• In 2011 we registered 95% of our close to 50 000 students online and in 2012, 96% using the system
Online Registration Process• Registration planning process: • Registration Committee and Task Team driven by sound project management principles • Z-card information • Registration schedule • At orientation all students were trained how to use the online registration system • Enrolment management could be enforced on a real-time level and quotas set per qualification and subject • Computer laboratories used for assistance and consultations
Online Registration Process (cont.) • Centralised dedicated critical services e.g. international office, finance, applications, call Centre, student cards and the capturing of finger prints • Opened online registrations (off-site) one week before the start of formal registration, which resulted in approximately 5 500 registering online before the start of formal registrations • The system allows for a secure online payment processes
Lessons learnt and improvement strategies• Pressure shifted to the production of student cards and the capturing of finger prints in 2011• Assisted students anywhere on campus with Wi-Fi connected tablets• This year we also Initiated a dedicated “information hub”: to answer all e-mail enquiries and telephone enquiries• Cameras installed in all the registration venues – allowed staff to remotely monitor activities across campuses• YouTube video and information on UJ website
Value added to Academic Administration• The online registration system has significantly enhanced academic administration governance and service delivery• Drastically reduced the students visiting campuses to register (approximately 30% to 40%)• Annual cost saving of 40%• Supported our commitment to a more user friendly and environmentally friendly environment (e.g. no more printing of any registration documents)• Approximately 85% of the students prefer online registrations – surveyed 2011 / 2012
CONCLUSION• Technology-based systems: 95% online registration• Reduced turnaround time and improved governance with the management of electronic applications• Student satisfaction: 75% (on the total registration process, including finances)• External audit results: improved governance form 5533 errors in 2006 to 68 errors in 2011 (based on the 2010 student data)• Collective planning and ownership