The Transparency Project Committee continues to finalize its recommendations and plans to implement tools and resources to improve transparency in campus-wide decision-making processes.
"After we collected data from the employee and student surveys and held our survey results forum back in February, we determined it would also be important to gain additional perspectives from senior leadership regarding their decision-making and communication processes," stated Rhea Dever, committee co-chair and director of human resources.
Members of the committee interviewed 19 senior leaders, including university trustees, the president, vice presidents, deans and some department heads of academic and service departments.
"The feedback from the interviews was fairly consistent with the survey feedback and helped to validate for us how we can ensure the committee's work has broad impact," stated Dever.
The Transparency Project Committee is focusing its work in three areas: documenting existing decision-making processes and opportunities for input; creating web-based tools and resources that enhance information-sharing regarding campus committees and early stage initiatives/ideas; and developing communication and change management training and templates.
"We have found that there is a lot of information out there about campus-wide initiatives and decision-making, but that people may not understand how to access the information and more importantly, how to participate in the process,” Dever said. “We have some gaps to fill when it comes to providing feedback up and down the management hierarchy, as well as across departments. We are hopeful that by putting these tools in place and working collaboratively with our executive and senior leadership, we can create more opportunities for information sharing, input and documentation."
The Transparency Project Committee plans to work over the summer to further develop these resources so that they can be piloted in the fall with feedback from the campus community.
The Transparency Project Committee is composed of a diverse representation of faculty, staff and students. The initiative is one of three action projects underway at NMU as part of the Academic Quality Improvement Program (AQIP) method of accreditation through the Higher Learning Commission. For more information, visit nmu.edu/aqip and view current action projects.