Who we are

The Office of Strategic Solutions provides leadership and guidance for a metric-based approach toward continuous improvement initiatives across departmental lines. With a customer-centric focus, OSS engagements involve all service or process team members to ensure everyone is empowered to both create and implement new ideas. Since its inception, OSS has served as a trusted advisor and strategic partner for the campus, delivering solutions that impact both the bottom line, as well as, customer and employee satisfaction.

  • Vision: Provide senior leadership with the critical information and internal consulting capabilities to identify and implement strategic solutions to advance the mission of the university.
     
  • Mission: Serving as a neutral partner, empower & guide employees to create customer-focused solutions that directly impact the operational and fiscal health of our organization.

Goals

  • Proactively identify cross-functional opportunities that increase quality, productivity and/or financial savings.
  • Work with FOA leadership to prioritize opportunities and ensure service objectives are strategically aligned.
  • Guide or lead teams to implement creative, customer-centric solutions.
  • Assist business units with strategic planning efforts.
  • Promote an entrepreneurial culture.

Our Process
 

  • Ideation: The process of forming ideas/concepts for initiatives
  • - The formal process for an idea to mature into an endorsed initiative has been through the Exploration Committee process described further below. Ideas are documented using the 1-Page template, which helps the committee to more accurately compare ideas and prioritize for implementation.

    - Ideas can be submitted/discussed with the Director outside of a formal Exploration Committee process (especially if there is a break between committees). If the ROI is sufficient, it’s possible that the initiative could be initiated on an accelerated timeline and added to the OSS Portfolio for direction, management or oversight.

  • Business Plans: Vetting the 1-Pager
  • Once the Exploration Committee or the Director of OSS has endorsed an idea, additional information is solicited to ensure most or any, of the assumptions used to generate the 1-pager are vetted and a more accurate Return on Investment analysis is generated. Upon completion, the proposal is prioritized against the the list of active and proposed initiatives vying for the same resources.
  • Implementation
  • Once approved and activated, the initiative is managed by a Subject Matter Expert who is deputized as a Project Manager and who is mentored by the Director of the Office of Strategic Solutions, who also oversees, guides and tracks the progress of the initiative. Additionally, each initiative needs an Executive Sponsor/Project Champion, Project Manager (SME), Necessary team members and a Steering Committee.

Exploration Committees

The Exploration Committees are the primary “idea engines" behind Strategic Solutions and are responsible for soliciting, producing and evaluating ideas that will save or generate recurring funds or create impactful operational efficiencies across the campus. Membership on these committees change based on the selected target theme, to ensure the best mix of expertise is represented (i.e. The first Exploration Committee focused on the theme of strategic sourcing and generated 6 projects that are directly contributing to the projected $30M of hard dollars of new funding by 2023).