In April 2017, Equantiis partnered with Manchester Metropolitan University (MMU) to deliver its Student Journey Transformation Programme. The partnership was formed so that Equantiis could support the University in the development and delivery of the programme which aimed to improve the quality of the service that the University provides.
Manchester Metropolitan University embarked upon the Student Journey Transformation Programme in order to enhance every aspect of the student journey. The programme, sponsored by the Registrar, Professor Karen Moore, was a large-scale business change initiative which aimed to deliver improved student experience through every one of the University’s touchpoints in the student lifecycle.
The University appointed Equantiis as its strategic partner due to Equantiis’ domain-specific experience, process expertise, and innovative approach.
Equantiis was charged with using a robust and comprehensive method to understand, capture and articulate the required business outcomes. This included identifying key aspects of the desired student experience.
From this strong baseline of understanding, Equantiis and Manchester Metropolitan University assessed, selected and implemented the most appropriate technologies to deliver The Student Journey Transformation Programme’s objective of improving the experience for all who work, study and engage with the university.
Equantiis developed a set of personas to support staff working on the Student Journey Transformation Programme. Personas help provide a focus on the experience of key groups of customers such as students, academics and tutors. Personas are a set of fictitious individuals who each represent key customer segments. They are created using real information about customers and their behaviours. Developing the personas provided the University staff with a common reference point when discussing their customers’ needs and acted as a framework to support customer-centric decision making.
Equantiis and MMU agreed that the best approach to procuring a new large scale technology platform would be to capture the desired business outcomes and student experience to enable assessment, selection and implementation of a suitable technology. The first step Equantiis took was to understand the University’s current processes and gain an end-to-end view of the MMU student journey. Equantiis’ consultants ran workshops with all the SMEs across the University over an eight-week period which resulted in over 850 process maps being produced.
The maps were output in a consistent format and included metadata relating to the time, effort and roles associated with each process to allow relevant costs to be understood. Using the newly created library of process maps Equantiis identified opportunities to improve them through process re-engineering rather than automation through technology, resulting in immediate cost savings for the University.
Equantiis’ consultants took the findings from the initial workshops and mapped the desired To-Be processes. These outcome-based process maps focus on ‘what’ the University requires to operate or to improve its business. These formed a key part of the information that was issued to potential new technology partners. Bidders were provided with a functional fit matrix and asked to complete a fit-gap analysis on key areas of the technology adoption project. Suppliers’ answers were then scored against the University’s To-Be process outcome requirements and a report provided to MMU.
Equantiis’ unique approach to supplier evaluation, through process-led procurement, enabled MMU to provide prospective suppliers with a comprehensive and robust view of the operational requirements, while giving suppliers the opportunity to recommend how to get the most value from their proposed solution.
This, in turn, ensured the engagement began from a position of understanding and clarity, minimising risk of change requests later in the project delivery. Additionally, it enabled MMU and the chosen supplier to agree upon a fixed price contract with the confidence that the requirements and solution capability were understood from day one of the engagement.