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Potential Issues within BCE

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These slides were presented at a BCE (Business and Community Engagement) event to show some of the issues raised from a previous workshop involving those external to further and higher education. The focus was on effective partnerships.

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Potential Issues within BCE

  1. 1. 07/06/09 | slide Joint Information Systems Committee Supporting education and research Business and Community Engagement (BCE) Simon Whittemore 10 December 2008 Supporting BCE Practitioners Workshop: Feedback from the October 08 Demand Side workshop
  2. 2. Key issues for SMEs and other Business and Community organisations (1) <ul><li>Innovation and sustainability </li></ul><ul><li>Innovation essential to survival - slow down… more vital than ever now </li></ul><ul><li>What can you do for my org. NOW in the next 6 months….and impact longer term </li></ul><ul><li>Perceived gap between business needs and institution delivery </li></ul><ul><li>‘ Diversification’ substitute for innovation - what to do if or when something fails. </li></ul><ul><li>SMEs make decisions a.m., implement p.m. - not the case in HEIs. Speed of response can be an issue for an SME – it can be too slow (especially in the contracts area). Lack of pace can lead to discussions fading out </li></ul><ul><li>Access to capital major issue for SMEs </li></ul><ul><li>New combinations of knowledge / skills for new markets needed </li></ul><ul><li>Third sector with their low overheads (such as volunteers), can drive innovation </li></ul><ul><li>Innovation can be two things: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Doing new things </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Doing existing things quicker/cheaper/better –often more buy-in fr. business </li></ul></ul>07/06/09 | slide
  3. 3. Key issues for SMEs and other Business and Community organisations (2) <ul><li>Cultural and organisational issues; skills </li></ul><ul><li>Individuals often key drivers - if they move on, things can fall apart </li></ul><ul><li>Cultural attitudes towards failure - not seen as bad thing but learning experience </li></ul><ul><li>Business Devt. people in univs often viewed suspiciously by academics. </li></ul><ul><li>Gulf between research and it making money </li></ul><ul><li>Academics – esp. from R. intensive HEIs –often unwilling to meet SME </li></ul><ul><li>Agility – may not be agile as an organisation, but individuals may be </li></ul><ul><li>We need people to deal with change </li></ul><ul><li>Universities don’t teach skills like good laboratory management, project management etc which are essential skills for workplace….. </li></ul><ul><li>FE expertise in WFD; FE and He boundaries to blur? </li></ul><ul><li>SME's don’t have the right skills. Libraries could help, working with RDAs. </li></ul><ul><li>Managerial skills + qualities (esp resilience and resourcefulness in current climate) are lacking - Universities role…... </li></ul>07/06/09 | slide
  4. 4. Users’ access to institutional services and resources (1) <ul><li>Focus: library, business information resources, access to research output and scholarly content </li></ul><ul><li>Awareness </li></ul><ul><li>Who funds widening access beyond education to resources - e.g. journals, online Dbs </li></ul><ul><li>Mindset has to change – HEIs expect business to come to them? </li></ul><ul><li>Issue with packaging and terminology </li></ul><ul><li>Key is clarity of information – we need a broker to link people. Technology not a good broker. </li></ul><ul><li>The offer and potential solutions </li></ul><ul><li>How would access to resources etc be controlled ? </li></ul><ul><li>Authentication – tech. can support pretty much anything: barcode, IP, username / password, shibboleth etc. </li></ul><ul><li>Issue is identifying the user and costing accordingly. Different costing models for different user groups - technology is there </li></ul><ul><li>Remote access – currently need to access online resources through walk-in (library). </li></ul><ul><li>Alumni are allowed access to resources. As a tax payer why is there not free access to government papers? </li></ul>07/06/09 | slide
  5. 5. Users’ access to institutional services and resources (2) <ul><li>Focus: library, business information resources, access to research output and scholarly content </li></ul><ul><li>The offer and potential solutions </li></ul><ul><li>SMEs may be willing to pay for research services. Access to expertise via online search tools but It is difficult to put knowledge about expertise in a searchable format. The BDM’s role is to capture this information to facilitate brokerage. </li></ul><ul><li>Key point - guided access by knowledge expert who tailors information access to user’s needs </li></ul><ul><li>The question of who should own the information about the contacts (e.g. facebook)? Should it be the institutions or individuals? ( Academia.edu) </li></ul><ul><li>Virtual tours for businesses who are too busy at attend a regular open day </li></ul><ul><li>Osswatch – all content is open access – they receive around 12,000 hits a month with approx 60% from dot.com domains. </li></ul>07/06/09 | slide
  6. 6. The customer experience; relationship management (1) <ul><li>Focus: BCE services under knowledge transfer/exchange and employer engagement </li></ul><ul><li>Agility and responsiveness </li></ul><ul><li>Univs have to ask what their USP is over private companies. An SME would go to a private company over a univ unless looking for something very specialised. </li></ul><ul><li>IP – collaboration to allow IP to be used. We need a sensible approach to negotiation without being too precious. Use an open approach wherever possible </li></ul><ul><li>Responsive and flexible, one step ahead of what you would expect from a private company. Across HEI/FE websites there is a lack of conventions. </li></ul><ul><li>Linked up approach is required from univs i.e. If univ A cannot provide what the SME / org. is looking for they should signpost other institutions/organisations who can </li></ul>07/06/09 | slide
  7. 7. The customer experience; relationship management (2) <ul><li>Focus: BCE services under knowledge transfer/exchange and employer engagement </li></ul><ul><li>Engagement models and processes </li></ul><ul><li>SLAs in place if you are relying on third party services? </li></ul><ul><li>Community of practice – set up or emerging. Finding collaboration partnerships – ‘friend of a friend’ </li></ul><ul><li>Danger of reaching too wide – market segmentation needed; Internal CRM issues - (inter departmental) v personal contacts and trust </li></ul><ul><li>Drive from HEFCE to make universities more competitive, could this drive result in less collaboration? </li></ul><ul><li>Some initiatives (Vouchers) that enable SMEs to use some services for free but perhaps these are not well publicised enough. </li></ul><ul><li>Businesses don't use univs as they don't know for sure that the service is going to be good. There is a need for better marketing and promotion, market segmentation etc </li></ul><ul><li>There is an importance of looking at end to end processes and technology supporting the workflow. Supply chain management? </li></ul>07/06/09 | slide
  8. 8. Online collaboration and co-development (1) <ul><li>Focus: online collaborative tools and approaches used in BCE </li></ul><ul><li>Popular tools </li></ul><ul><li>Wikis for internal doc sharing </li></ul><ul><li>Google Groups - for minutes, documentation, notes etc - limited success - not all groups used it (university). </li></ul><ul><li>Second Life – virtual experience for familiarisation </li></ul><ul><li>Ning </li></ul><ul><li>Sharepoint - corporately easier to convince people to use. </li></ul><ul><li>Google docs - for shared documents. </li></ul><ul><li>Skype for instant messaging. </li></ul><ul><li>Blogs, delicious etc </li></ul><ul><li>Email most effective? </li></ul>07/06/09 | slide
  9. 9. Online collaboration and co-development (2) <ul><li>Focus: online collaborative tools and approaches used in BCE </li></ul><ul><li>Issues and constraints </li></ul><ul><li>BUT We now have younger people coming into organisations who have used email very little, they are more familiar with social networking sites and texting. </li></ul><ul><li>Not allowed internet in workplace. </li></ul><ul><li>Access management. </li></ul><ul><li>3rd party provisions - potential problems with data protection issues if stored on servers outside UK. </li></ul><ul><li>Someone recently came across the following in a third party provision’s terms and conditions: &quot;any data stored electronically belongs to the service provider&quot;. </li></ul>07/06/09 | slide

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