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Michigan State UniversityMichigan State UniversityInfrastructure Planning and Facilities
A newsletter header image with an image of Dan Bollman behind the title 'The Details with Dan Bollman'

You are key to the success of IPF’s strategic framework

March 25, 2015

Let’s talk strategy. IPF’s strategic framework, to be exact. First, why do we need one? Higher education is changing, and to make sure that MSU remains relevant, the university is changing, too. The focus for MSU is to deliver a great educational experience and cutting-edge research. But funding is a challenge, and that means MSU has to concentrate its resources on delivering education and research.

When MSU changes, IPF has to change. We’ve taken care of MSU for the last 150 years. How do we take care of it today and into the future? Our customers expect us to be as effective and efficient as possible. They want the best customer service and the best value for their money. MSU needs IPF to provide great customer service and great value without increasing our resources.

Without increasing our resources. That part stings a bit, doesn’t it? Compared to facilities units at lots of other universities, we’re already doing more with less. But that’s our reality and that’s our challenge. It means we have to be the most innovative facilities organization we can be. It means our vision statement can’t just be pretty words. We must live up to it: “Be the most high-performing, innovative, leading-edge facilities organization in the nation, with a focus on quality, customer satisfaction and value in all that we do.”

Living up to that vision drives our strategy for being what MSU needs us to be. That strategy includes some key things that everyone in IPF needs to own. Take a look at this list and start thinking about how YOU will own them and make them part of your job:

  • Deliver outstanding customer service
  • Be reliable and consistently responsive
  • Apply key performance indicators (metrics) to improve efficiency
  • Be financially transparent for every customer

We’re already using key performance indicators (KPIs for short—it wouldn’t be MSU if we didn’t have an acronym!) to improve efficiency and customer service. KPIs (i.e. metrics) have helped us focus our landfill waste efforts, run the power plant more economically and rethink our landscaping efforts at resident halls, to name just a few results.

Do you have examples of things you’ve done or are doing that result in better value, service, reliability or responsiveness for customers—or ideas you think might bring those kinds of results? Are you using KPIs to improve efficiency, service, etc.? I want to hear about them. Please send your examples, ideas, thoughts or questions (about this topic or anything else) to this new e-mail address:

Until next time,