Back See this section in context: Criterion 2 Core Component 2D
2D.1: Coordinated Planning and Budgeting
Sauk has undergone a transformation in the last ten years in its understanding of what it means to coordinate planning processes. Mission-driven planning is now embedded in the institution and is following an established process that should allow it to continue to improve itself at the same time it works to improve the college. All of the major planning systems are intertwined:
- Strategic Directions (Appendix), which are reviewed annually by OPIC and the Board, contain all of the foundational priorities around which planning is coordinated. The Strategic Goals and Objectives form the basis of planning templates of other systems and for the organization of the Annual Report (Appendix).
- Operational planning is organized around the Strategic Directions. Each planned activity is aligned with the Strategic Goal and Objective to which it pertains. Offices and academic areas report on the completion status of their past year's goals, based on assessment of the planned outcomes, and submit new goals for the upcoming year.
- Program review is linked directly to the Strategic Directions through the design of its template. At the end of each section of the Program Review Template, review teams are prompted to indicate if activities they have identified to respond to issues of that section will be included in the Operational Plan. The Dean of Institutional Research and Planning verifies that activities so noted have indeed been added to the appropriate Operational Plan.
Sauk has also done considerable work to ensure that the entire planning cycle is timed to feed into the annual budgeting cycle. This reliability is evidenced by the timeline that directs various planning groups to have data discussed and action plans in place in time for the budget process deadlines to be met (Appendix). To further strengthen the link between the budgeting process and the Strategic Goals and Objectives, budget forms are being revised to create a direct link between the request and the planning process.
Although the data cycle which began with the FY09 revisions is just now completing its first cycle through the system, some of the successful timing connections between planning and budget are documented:
- Over $149,000 of requests were received from FY10 Program Reviews. Nearly $9,000 of requests were withdrawn or the equipment was donated, purchases on nearly $21,000 were made, and the remainder was put on hold due to budget constraints.
- A $35,000 request for a full-time faculty position was submitted from FY10 Operational Plans, but not funded due to budget constraints.
- Just over $115,000 of requests were received from FY11 Program Reviews, comprised mostly of requests for three full-time faculty positions. The faculty position, the same that had been requested in FY10, was approved, along with $400 of equipment.