Developing a Process Improvement Request System at SUNY Empire State College

Cynthia T. Bates, Julia Penn Shaw, Stephanie L. Thomas, John J. Lawless


This paper presents the Process Improvement Request System initiated at SUNY Empire State College as a case study for institutional change management. Through this system, employees can submit suggestions for improving any kind of institutional processes at the college using an Information Technology “ticketing” system like the one used for technical issues. These communications are addressed, tracked, and stored by the Process Improvement Committee which includes representatives from all areas of the college. The Process Improvement Request System addresses many critical goals including 1) the storage of process issues, concerns, and suggestions; 2) a mechanism for addressing these; 3) open access to all employees (and to students through employee representatives) to submit ideas; 4) the ability to make suggestions about all levels of process issues, from college wide to personnel specific; 5) anonymity for making a request when desired; and 6) a feedback loop about the effectiveness of new processes. In this paper, the essential aspects of this project are discussed and analyzed. The paper also enables readers to ascertain the viability of such a project at their campuses and invites them to reach out to the authors if they have questions about doing so.

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