UW Strategic Planning

Past Initiatives

Organizational Effectiveness (2011-2015)

The Organizational Effectiveness/Excellence Initiative focused on creating a culture of continuous improvement in UW administration, decreasing costs or redeploying resources where possible. It built on ongoing work taking place in Finance & Facilities, Research and UW-IT, offering provost-funded internal consulting services to all units. The initiative supported UW lobbying efforts during the financial crisis, tracking and quantifying UW cost-saving measures, including annual savings of well over $70 million each year as a result of energy conservation, improved purchasing practices, streamlined processes, and other efficiency measures that allowed staff to focus on higher-value, mission-focused work. Savings resulting from consulting efforts totaled $2.5M to $4M per year, an estimated 10:1 return-on-investment. OEI has since evolved into the Transforming Administration Program. The internal consultants have merged with the LEAN team from Finance & Facilities to create Strategic Consulting, a key support for TAP efforts.

Administration for the 21st Century Visioning Document.
Steering Committee and Working Groups

Campus of the 21st Century: Improving physical and virtual environments (2011–12)

This initiative brought together campus planners to develop a shared approach to improving the UW’s physical and virtual environments.  It began in response to a need identified to increase collaborative, flexible, and technology-enhanced spaces—spaces that often serve diverse groups across unit boundaries.  The committee developed a common vision and goals, and increased communication across units and campuses. Former committee members continue to work together to achieve these goals as part of their regular activities within the offices of Planning & Budgeting, Finance and Facilities, and Information Technology. A task force on learning spaces is currently active as part of the Teaching & Learning initiative.

The Campus of the 21st Century visioning document
Steering committee

Enhance Student Services Initiative: Supporting student success (2011–12)

The Enhance Student Services Initiative began as in 2011 as a joint venture of the Graduate SchoolUniversity Libraries, the Office of Student Life, the Office of Minority Affairs and Diversity, and the Office of Undergraduate Academic Affairs to identify areas to better collaborate around student success. In 2012, the same core group turned their focus to the Student Experience, since renamed the Husky Experience. The Husky Experience set out to systematically address how the UW approaches student services to attract and retain outstanding students, help them succeed inside and outside the classroom, and chart a course for success after graduation. These efforts continue as a major UW initiative led by the Senior Vice Provost for Academic and Student Affairs, a new position created in no small part to support the key goals of this work.

Steering Committee

Fostering Collaboration

From 2011 to 2014, the Fostering Collaboration initiative identified and worked to remove or reduce barriers collaboration. The goal was to facilitate collaborative research, teaching and learning within and across disciplines and institutions to improve the UW’s ability to nimbly address society’s complex challenges. The group drafted a statement of collaboration and guidelines for joint appointments adopted by the Board of Deans and Chancellors. It also developed resources and best practices for collaborative research and teaching, and mapped the collaborations taking place within and across UW schools and colleges. In 2014, the committee completed the work identified that could be accomplished centrally and shared with relevant responsible groups (e.g., deans, chairs and faculty leadership) items that surfaced in the course of this initiative over which they had shared governance or authority.

The Fostering Collaboration visioning document
Steering Committee

Program Evaluation Initiative: Evidence-based decision-making (2010–11)

During a time of drastic budget cuts, the Program Evaluation Initiative was created to help the provost make difficult decisions based on clear criteria and evidence.  This effort drafted and vetted criteria for decision-making and added comprehensive metrics to the annual budget review process. In 2012, the budget review process included academic program evaluation criteria and metrics. In 2013, administrative program evaluation criteria and metrics were implemented. Program Evaluation is now managed by the Office of Planning and Budget.

Development of FY 15 budget
Overall budget FAQ
Steering Committee