He admits it wasn’t always like this.
“One year ago, I didn’t know anything about SharePoint,” Davis said. “I became a SharePoint guru overnight—or at least that’s what some people on campus think.”
Maranatha’s Executive Vice President was recently a guest on a Customer Spotlight Webinar hosted by BrightWork, a provider of SharePoint applications for project management. Davis demonstrated how he built the site for tracking the many campus-wide projects that are part of Maranatha’s Academic Quality Improvement Program.
Each of the 51 active projects has a “dashboard” that lists tasks and goals, visualizes quality and strategy ratings with stars and diamonds, tracks progress on a Gantt timeline, and provides fields for status updates and project issues.
“Previously, we had no capacity to know what was happening across campus on a real-time basis,” Davis said. “There was no way to prove what was taking place, and no way to celebrate successful projects.”
Davis began to address those problems in the fall of 2010 while working as Director of Institutional Research and Effectiveness. He worked with Richard Goldade, then a Systems Analyst at Maranatha, and consulted BrightWork for suggestions on constructing templates, then found ways to make the project “offices” parallel the College’s existing organizational structure.
The project office also includes methods for task requests and approvals, generates reports and automatic reply emails, and documents each step toward the project’s completion.
“We wanted to create a collaborative environment for project teams, and a sense of accountability and approval that helped us to integrate the quality improvement projects with our institution’s strategic plan,” Davis said.
No more stacks of notebooks. No more interminably long progress meetings. The work of quality improvement moves forward, and the progress is documented.
“We’ve really been given an unprecedented tool to help us accomplish a vital task,” Davis said.