Main Conference Day One, Wednesday, October 14, 2020

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Kathleen Bienkowski

Independent Consultant; Former Associate Vice President, Research Administration Shared Services
Emory University

11:15 am - 12:15 pm WORKSHOP: IMPLEMENTING ROBOTIC PROCESS AUTOMATION IN HIGHER EDUCATION: THE WHY, WHAT AND HOW

Phil Searle - Founder & CEO, Chazey Partners
Chuy Michael - RPA Lead, America’s, Chazey Partners

Higher education institutions have been feeling the financial squeeze for many years, and the Covid-19 crisis has only added to this. As in many other sectors, Robotic Process Automation (RPA) is increasingly being leveraged in higher education with the aim of boosting productivity, modernizing administrative operations and pursuing academic excellence.


This workshop will take a deep dive into RPA implementation in a higher education institution, and serve as a guide to outlining key aspects of an RPA implementation journey, from the get-go through to institutional-wide scaling up.


§ What exactly is Robotic Process Automation, and what it can offer? 

§ Potential candidate processes for RPA

§ Charting a solid implementation plan: Piloting, vendor selection, business case, automation roadmap and bot development and deployment

§ Overcoming challenges, and implementation lessons learned

§ Some case studies of successful implementations

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Phil Searle

Founder & CEO
Chazey Partners

Chuy Michael

RPA Lead, America’s
Chazey Partners

The global health crisis of 2020 upended the normal operational practices for shared services organizations—challenging the long held “orthodoxies” and forcing many to pivot to a new way of working---not only to survive during the pandemic but thrive in the post–COVID-19 world. In this session, we will discuss, the impact of the pandemic on Higher Education Shared Services Organizations and what the change has meant for the industry and how they were able to pivot over the last 6 months. Discussion will include:

§ The challenges and new opportunities as a result of the pandemic

§ The impact on newly established shared services organizations

§ Building more resilient operating models including virtual/remote shared services

§ Leveraging Robotic Process Automation (RPA) and robust business continuity planning

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Lisa Sharpe

Project Director, Shared Services Operations, Office of the AVP for Finance
West Virginia University

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Chase Loper

Director Shared Services
Duquesne University

1:00 pm - 1:45 pm CASE STUDY: BUILT TO BE REMOTE: HOW DESIGNING OUR SHARED SERVICES FROM THE BEGINNING ALLOWED US TO GO REMOTE WITHOUT MISSING A BEAT

Ronn Kolbash - Associate Vice President of Shared Service, University of Chicago
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Ronn Kolbash

Associate Vice President of Shared Service
University of Chicago

1:45 pm - 2:30 pm INTERACTIVE ROUNDTABLE: IF I HAD TO DO IT ALL OVER AGAIN -- LESSONS LEARNED FROM A CRISIS

Whitney Pugh - Executive Director of Budget & Planning, Utah State University

In this interactive discussion, participants will share their stories on the best lessons learned from a crisis that will better prepare them to weather future storms. Discussion includes:

§ The best re-engineering project during the COVID-19 pandemic

§ Process improvement - was your team/infrastructure ready?

§ What gaps have been identified within your model?

§ How the work-from-home experience was a way to identify what’s important--priorities, expectations, individual versus team-based work

§ What does your long-term plan look like?

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Whitney Pugh

Executive Director of Budget & Planning
Utah State University

2:30 pm - 3:15 pm FIRESIDE CHAT: CREATING A CULTURE OF CHANGE AND IMPROVEMENT – DIVERSITY, EQUALITY AND INCLUSION

Sarah Peri - Director of Operations & Outreach, Brown University
Brandon Gaines - Shared Services Director, Princeton University

Never before, has diversity, equality and inclusion been more important to an organization’s culture. As higher education shared services organizations continue to change and grow—ensuring a more diverse and inclusive team is imperative for an equitable future. In this session, we will discuss:

§ Hiring practices to eliminate biases

§ Building out your team to be ensure diversity

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Sarah Peri

Director of Operations & Outreach
Brown University

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Brandon Gaines

Shared Services Director
Princeton University

3:15 pm - 3:20 pm End of Day One