Like many educational institutions in Australia, MLC manually handled students’ enrolment submissions. Applicants filled out paper based forms and sent these, and other supporting documents, to the head of admissions by mail, hand or fax. From here the application would be processed through a manually intensive business process.
This procedure happened to cause immense stress and jeopardised MLC’s ability to continue to provide an efficient and welcoming enrolment experience to prospective students.
Although the system worked initially, there were significant challenges and it was clearly becoming unsustainable.
Issues resolved when MLC engaged with the Fivep’s team of experts who implemented SharePoint, Nintex Workflow and Nintex Forms solutions.
Amongst the challenges experienced were:
Furthermore, MLC realised their current process was not fulfilling MLC’s strategic objectives in being an innovative leader in the education sector.
Implementing an online form capable of supporting the complex family arrangements often seen in today’s society was not going to be easy. Given the ‘mums and dads’ target audience, the form needed to be intuitive and easy to use yet capable of managing the most complex of family structures. The business process, triggered by the application was also very complex. MLC’s ethos of handing every application as its own ‘unique case’ meant there was no room for automatic processing of an application. The system would need to support the personalised service MLC was renowned for, not replace it.
Though not exhaustive, the following list highlights some of the form and process complexities which needed to be considered:
Clearly the requirements and detail of the form and process would be difficult to completely capture and document upfront.
To minimise risk, MLC elected to first conduct a Proof of Concept(PoC) to ‘road test’ a technology stack which might be suitable to its needs.
The POC demonstrated a simplified version of the form and process providing MLC with confidence that these tools were in fact capable of delivering the functionality required. The project continued.
As it happens, the PoC actually served two purposes. Not only was the technology stack confirmed but it also provided enough insight into the complexity of the process to highlight the need for an Agile project management methodology to be applied.
Based on a series of two (2) week iterations, the agile approach helped to focus the attentions of the development team on what was known and what was required for each iteration in turn. Essentially moving to a ‘just in time’ design and planning approach rather than ‘just in case’.
As the evolving requirements of the form and business process were revealed they were incorporated into the solution. With each release building on the functionality of the previous one and helping to shape the features included in the next release.
The Nintex Workflow and Nintex Forms solution provided the ability to collect an extraordinarily large range of information which could then be considered by the case managers prior to being successfully transmitted into MLC’s backend student management systems.
Ultimately the final solution met, and indeed exceeded expectations, while still being delivered in one third the time experienced by other schools building similar online enrolment processing applications.
The workflow that was implemented supported the team in their activities, empowering them to participate, track and monitor each application as it was processed. Dashboards of the entire process now provide valuable insights into the number of applicants per year and per year level, their current status through the process and who is the currently assigned case manager for each application. Visibility that was previously impractical to maintain and share consistently.
The resulting solution provided a controlled integration between the submitted online form and MLC’s student record management system (TASS). It also provided the foundation for enhanced document management capabilities, within the college, and a framework for further business processes to be automated in the future.
Like most non trivial projects this successful experience highlighted the need for teamwork. FiveP knows, that as a service provider you need to have a cohesive and strong team which works well together to deliver an outcome for the client. Other key roles of the project included the need for a product owner and/or sponsor who are engaged throughout the project and have the authority and the will to make decisions all the way through.
This project broke new ground for MLC. It provides an excellent platform for MLC to build on in so many areas of the business.
The Online Enrolment System (OES) has changed the way MLC’s employees work. Since going live on Monday 13 July 2015, employees are working in a more efficient and collaborative way. What used to take hours to action now only takes minutes. Furthermore, the system has reduced paper previously required during the enrolment process. The partnership between MLC and FiveP was essential to the project’s success.
But don’t just take our word for it, follow this link and see for yourself.
MLC commissioned FiveP to develop a Proof of Concept solution that streamlined student processes with a web form solution that also provided an underlying Enterprise Content Management platform for the College. With FiveP’s assistance, MLC was able to demonstrate that SharePoint, Nintex Forms and Nintex Workflows were viable technology platforms to support the college business processes. FiveP’s client-centered approach, along with their professionalism and focused customer service, made the process and project an effortless endeavour.
Staff can already see the benefits of MILO (our new SharePoint environment) and how it will effectively help reach our goal of building a collaborative culture throughout the entire organisation.
FiveP have really understood we have lots of staff and franchisees who are not technical, so the system has been really quick to roll out and easy for everyone to learn. It's great to see the difference it has already made for our business.
One of the important things that resonated with us was that FiveP came to us as a change management
business rather than just a SharePoint business.
The guys at FiveP adapted fast to what we were looking for: they quickly understood that they had to be targeted and directed on what we were trying to achieve
I wanted the intranet to be the one shop to stop for information (‘the single source of truth’).
We now have an interactive, graphical representation of our framework that is easy to use and provides the right level of support and project management governance.
The solution implemented by FiveP improves the collaboration and communication with our employees, they can now quickly access the information they need, at any time and on any device.
The CardiNet project won the “CEO Commendation Award for 2014” which was a very proud moment for us. In addition to this, a couple of months ago, the CardiNet project received an internal Quarterly Award.
Throughout the process, FiveP demonstrated leadership and provided timely advice, helping us to understand how the merger of our information assets could be best achieved in a manner which supported our ongoing operations and community commitments.
By engaging FiveP as a SharePoint specialist we were able to plan a controlled consolidation and content migration program of works which simplified our IT landscape considerably.
MAV’s users can easily keep up-to-date on readily and quickly found information that has improved their collaborative efforts. The degree to which FiveP supported us, proactively and beyond what was expected, ensured the success of the project.
The project has been a success; the new intranet is widely regarded as the ‘source of truth’ for all employees. FiveP’s solution created a system that quickly searched and found relevant information from possibly thousands of documents.
FiveP provided training and user guides which empowered our content authors to truly ‘own’ the site, allowing them add and change content as needed to ensure it remains current and topical.