Key outcomes from my first Jisc stakeholder forum since becoming a Jisc trustee.
Earlier last week, after leaving the house in Linlithgow, I headed the 15 miles to Edinburgh airport to catch the 6:50 flight into London to attend my first Jisc stakeholder forum.
The day’s ambition was to engage fruitfully with Jisc’s higher education (HE), further education (FE) and skills customers, and government. We wanted to inform stakeholders of our past, present and future activities and most importantly take meaningful feedback on the success of this to devise a plan for the coming year.
The morning format looked at how have we done, where are we now and going forward together. This was led by Professor Paul Layzell, principal at Royal Holloway and Heather McDonald, chief executive, The Sheffield College, both Jisc trustees; and by Jisc's chief executive officer Martyn Harrow, Robert Haymon-Collins, executive director of customer experience and Phil Richards, chief innovation officer.
The discussion and feedback from groups highlighted the fact that many stakeholders didn’t appreciate the range of work going on, how it impacted on their own organisations and crucially understand what was the best way for Jisc to road map these services in a simple format.
Later in the morning, Robert Haymon-Collins took us through the new customer experience directorate. He spoke about how this had evolved from Jisc’s Regional Support Centres to an account management approach for institutions, with a key emphasis on customer service and the customer experience.
Measuring impact and identifying future trends
Lunchtime came and went. As a networking opportunity the 45 minutes just flew and provided a chance to catch up and make new contacts, exchange cards and plan for the future.
In the afternoon, themed breakout groups spent over an hour discussing:
- How Jisc plans, manages and reports its impact for customers
- Ideas to improve the way it runs its Summer of Student Innovation competition for 2016, which funds the development of student technology solutions to improve education, research and student life
- Improving the co-design approach across the HE, FE and skills sectors
- Scenario planning for future challenges
- How to evaluate the technology trends for the next five to ten years
These breakout sessions gave participants a chance to engage and contribute to the future of Jisc.
I attended the session to identify performance measures, which was really good, if only to state that measuring something that is cross-cutting, impacts on so many areas and has added value to so many people will not be easy!
Key outcomes and objectives
With the breakouts complete, we were presented with a summary of key objectives raised by the day’s activity.
Looking towards 2015 and beyond Jisc will look to:
- Create clarity and simplicity of the Jisc portfolio of services so that they are easier for our customers to access and understand
- Have a greater transparency of subscription costs, supported by information and data
- Build their account management and engagement approach with the new customer services team, recognising the need for an inclusive approach across multiple sectors and stakeholders
- Strive for simplicity through everything Jisc does
- Help the FE sector deliver
- Give a greater voice to students to enhance their experience
Attending this event it was obvious that Jisc has come a long way to reshape and deliver for UK education and research. It has a real momentum and I for one am really looking forward to an innovative future.
Listen to our podcast of Ken's blog to also hear what attendees thought of the day.