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Education Technology Solutions and Management Consulting

Technology in K-12 and Higher Education

Establishing technology as a strategic resource for faculty, staff and students is imperative for education institutions to succeed in the 21st century. With an abundance of education technology solutions available-from eLearning and Enterprise Resource Planning to Student Information Systems Constituent Relationship Management (CRM)-the opportunities to improve efficiency and effectiveness are endless. But the financial investment can seem endless as well.

We leverage the Synch-Solutions Polaris Methodology to help educational institutions define a clear strategy for achieving business objectives while implementing the right education technology solutions. In addition, we assess the current environment and determine how future technology solutions will impact client institutions. Our collection of service offerings for Higher Education institutions is called Campus Transformation, and it includes:

Campus Accelerator - Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) Solutions

We understand that it is critical for educational institutions to keep accurate and reliable data while managing core administration processes. Synch-Solutions helps organizations effectively implement Oracle/ PeopleSoft Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) solutions covering campus and student information, human resources, financial management, self-service and portal solutions.

As an Oracle Gold Partner, Synch Solutions brings considerable experience with PeopleSoft Campus Solutions. In addition, we have deep expertise with Student Information Systems, which offer a variety of student services and administrative functions ranging from student application processing to the development of individual study plans and timetables. Our student administration solutions enable clients to increase efficiencies across administrative and service areas, while leveraging pre-existing technology investments.

Synch-Solutions' Campus Accelerator is the first fully proven service offering of its kind - rapid implementation of the full suite of PeopleSoft Campus Solutions, Human Capital Management, and Financials at a small or midsized institution in only 12 months, at a low, fixed-fee rate. This powerful, solution is enabling institutions with a modest budget and limited resources to gain a competitive operating advantage in the marketplace. For pricing, please contact us.

You can read about our experience in performing a rapid implementation at University of Arkansas at Monticello (UAM) by downloading the case study PeopleSoft Campus Solutions, Financials and HCM in 12 Months. You can gain further insight by viewing the Alliance 2011 Conference presentation made by Synch-Solutions and UAM. Synch-Solutions also offers a rapid upgrade solution, Campus Accelerator for Upgrades, for institutions already using PeopleSoft.

Synch-Solutions' Enterprise Security Assessment and Toolkit provide the 360-degree perspective higher education institutions need to objectively define current internal application exposure and quickly reduce system access vulnerabilities.

Campus Intelligence - Data Warehousing and Business Intelligence Solutions

Many institutions are struggling to establish a single source system of record for constituent information. Oracle's enterprise master data management (MDM) suite of products consolidates and maintains complete, accurate, and authoritative master data across the enterprise and distributes this master information to all operational and analytical applications as a shared service. MDM applications manage customer, supplier, product, and financial data using data governance services, along with supporting world-class integration and BI components.

Synch-Solutions implements MDM and provides education institutions with the configurable tool sets they need to extract, from an array of data sources, relevant information that is essential to strategic decision-making at various levels of institutional leadership. Our dashboard enables real-time predictive analytics, proactive intelligence and alerts, analytical reporting, ad-hoc queries and more.

Our pre-configured solution interfaces with Oracle/PeopleSoft and other ERP systems to enable the building of a robust, multidimensional data warehouse architecture in a matter of weeks or months, depending on customization needs. The Campus Intelligence BI solution is interactive and action-oriented, offering capabilities for development of user-friendly, high-level reports, and upward and downward drill-through for detailed analysis. It collects data, measures performance against targets and alerts users, enabling them to take timely action. This out-of-the-box solution includes the Key Performance Indicators that enable better decision-making across the various organizational levels.

Campus SMARTS - Managed IT Services and More

Campus SMARTS proactively manages the whole technology stack, including the IT infrastructure and software applications and databases, and also provide performance monitoring.

By engaging Synch-Solutions as a partner to manage commodity services, institutions can better focus on their core missions, and can leverage the cost reductions and improved service levels achieved through the economies of scale that we bring to bear. Some of the benefits of Campus SMARTS to institutions include increased operational efficiency, reduction and improved control of operating costs, and minimized system downtime.

Solutions Enabling Shared Services

Synch-Solutions can provide school systems and districts with solutions enabling shared services that reduce the costs of administrative functions, freeing up existing budget dollars to be directed to learning activities and producing higher service levels for the price than can typically be managed on an internal system. Such services include:

  • Back-Office Functions
  • IT Infrastructure
  • Software as a Service

Operational Assessment

The first step in any successful IT implementation is to ensure that the current environment is prepared for change. Our assessment teams mitigate project risk by collaborating with clients to audit, assess and report on operations. Using best practices, our teams perform comprehensive capability reviews of:

  • Existing Business Processes
  • Technology Plans
  • Software Rationalization
  • Change Management Acceptance

Our assessment teams also determine if the client's current technology infrastructure is adequate to meet the requirements of the IT initiative, as well as the needs of faculty, staff and students. The Campus SMARTS Operational Assessment covers:

  • Network Capacity
  • Applications
  • Architecture
  • Total Cost of Ownership (TCO)
  • Training and Development

The Operational Assessment provides a framework for defining the vision and objectives for information technology, relative to the institution's business strategy.

Change Management

Implementing new applications and upgrading existing systems requires a commitment to training and communication among the client's most important assets-the faculty and staff. Because we understand the need for short-term vocational and technical training, and adult education, Synch-Solutions can provide direction regarding training programs for teachers, administrators, parents and educational stakeholders. In addition, we will observe the current organization in order to isolate roadblocks, identify the strongest threats and neutralize existing barriers to prevent derailment.

To help facilitate effective change, Campus SMARTS includes the following Change Management services:

  • Extended IT Services
  • Customized Training

The Synch-Solutions Polaris Methodology helps ensure that the Change Management program is positively embraced across the organization.

Legacy System Modernization

Maintenance and support of legacy systems continues to become increasingly difficult and expensive. Institutions supporting legacy systems face such challenges as a scarcity of trained personnel, growing license and maintenance fees, and connectivity problems. Campus SMARTS includes solutions that enable such education institutions migrate from legacy system applications and databases to modern industry-standard platforms and systems. After conducting a full ecosystem assessment of the legacy data, we utilize industry-leading automated migration tools, proven methodologies and expertise to bring each modernization project to a successful completion. Our legacy modernization solutions increase flexibility while creating efficiencies and cost savings and reducing business risks.

To learn about one of our legacy modernization projects at a higher education institution, read this press release: Synch-Solutions Teams with BluePhoenix Solutions to Modernize and Re-Host Systems for the City Colleges of Chicago.

Campus Content - Enterprise Content Management

Many institutions today are challenged to manage vast quantities of paper and electronic documents, which can result in duplication of documents, increased storage expenses, and poor information access across departments. Synch-Solutions' Campus Content enables more effective document management that deliver efficiencies.

Campus Content improves information sharing across and between institutions, and provides a "single source of truth". Benefits include:

  • Improved worker productivity and customer service
    • Faster and easier access to data
    • Faster processing time
    • Reduced data entry
  • Cost savings
    • Storage
    • Delivery of paper-based documents
  • Increased data security and regulations compliance
  • Improved continuity of operations and disaster recovery
  • Support of green initiatives

For more information about our Education solutions and experience, please download and read our Higher Education data sheet; our service offering sheets Campus Transformation, Campus Accelerator, Campus Accelerator for Upgrades, Campus Intelligence, Enterprise Security Assessment and Toolset for Higher Education; and our Higher Education case studies, or contact us.