Plans to develop NHH's administration

Five priority areas have been identified in NHH's ongoing process to prepare itself for the future. This is the conclusion of the report on NHH's technical and administrative tasks, which will be considered by the Board on 28 October.

27.10.2015 - Ed.

In connection with the preparation of the budget for 2014, the Board requested an analysis of the technical and administrative positions at NHH. The reason for this was sudden growth in the number of full-time equivalents in technical and administrative posts from 2012 to 2014. The Board wanted to understand the reasons for this development, as well as gain more insight into the tasks performed by the administration.

The work on compiling an overview of the technical and administrative tasks started in the spring, when all the technical and administrative employees were asked to record all the tasks they perform and the amount of time they spent on these tasks. Now these data have been analysed, and the report has been submitted to the Board.

Good starting point

The data reveal that the employees are eager to improve routines, systems and the organisation of their tasks and that they see ways to achieve such improvements.

"The data are a great starting point for assessing how we can prepare the organisation for the challenges the future will bring," says Managing Director Nina Skage.

"The survey illustrates what works well, what can be simplified and improved, and where we have capacity problems," she says and refers to five priority areas:

1. Better, simpler services
- organisational and/or physical streamlining and coordination of services (events, services)
- simpler and better online information
- greater use of self-service online solutions
- transition from printed materials to digital communication

2. Digital examinations

3. Efficient work processes
- better routines, information flow and clarification of responsibilities between units
- better internal routines within individual units
- upgrade of systems

4. Doing the right things, with the right level of service
- prioritisation of tasks
- definition of service level

5. Skills development

Tighter financial framework

Parallel to this mapping work, the university and university college sector has been ordered to improve efficiency and de-bureaucratise. In 2015 NHH's allocations were reduced by just over NOK 2 million. It is now clear that the government is going to continue its demands for further rationalisation, and the cutbacks will continue for the next three years.

"We are thus facing an overall reduction in allocations of NOK 8.5-9 million over four years. It is important to emphasise that the cuts are aimed at NHH as a whole, and that we therefore need to come up with permanent cost-reducing measures," says Nina Skage.

"Against this backdrop, we are very pleased that the Board initiated the review of technical and administrative positions back in 2013. The report highlights a number of concrete areas where efficiency can be enhanced and other improvements can be made. We are thus probably better equipped to meet this rationalisation challenge than many other institutes," says Nina Skage.

A mine of new information

The survey has provided detailed information on deliveries and all the tasks that are performed, as well as information about the recipients and orderers, and the employees' own estimates of the time they spend on the various tasks. In addition, the employees have considered changes in relation to the scope of their work and assessed the efficiency and effectiveness of the tasks they perform.

"The work on mapping the technical and administrative tasks and all the conversations and meetings associated with this process have provided a great deal of new information," says Director of Human Resources Odd Andrew Storetvedt, who has headed this project.

He stresses that the quality of the collected data is very variable, because it is demanding both to remember every task done and to calculate the hours linked to an entire year's work.

He nevertheless believes that the material provides a reasonably accurate picture of what appear to be NHH's main challenges.

"The process has been useful to create a common understanding of the tasks, large and small, that technical and administrative employees perform. We have received many constructive suggestions, and it is clear that a lot of good work has been done."

Going forwards

"We will now continue to develop the work processes together with managers and employees both within and across units. Major processes will be discussed in consultation with the unions," says Odd Andrew Storetvedt.

He points out that the scope of and schedule for the measures that will be implemented will depend on the budget for 2016, which will be decided at the board meeting on 9 December this year.

Redaktør: Astri Kamsvåg
Ansvarleg redaktør: Kristin Risvand Mo

Utviklet av Renommé Interactive