April 18, 2012 | Leave a Comment
Potomac, MD April 18, 2012 – ASR is pleased to announce the addition of a new Managing Consultant, John Marsh. He was formerly the Lead Software Designer/Developer for Business Intelligence and Reporting Solutions at Datatel (now ellucianTM.) In his role at Datatel he created advanced data model, reporting, and analytic designs to support the needs of a diverse client base of nearly 800 colleges and universities across North America. Prior to his work at Datatel he worked at Qwest where he was heavily involved in data warehousing design and implementation.
At ASR John has joined the Higher Education practice to implement a variety of Business Intelligence (BI) solutions for our growing client base. Some of the projects currently underway include implementation and knowledge transfer of the popular SAP Business Objects Enterprise, SAS Enterprise BI, and Microsoft BI platforms.
Beyond the technology itself, many institutions are struggling with getting data across their numerous systems organized, defined, and delivered to internal and external constituents. Our “analytic accelerators” leverage the higher education expertise, data and systems knowledge along with predefined template designs for student enrollment and retention analysis, student outcomes analysis with course completion and success. Coupled with recommendations for Data Governance processes, this approach covers three key success factors — people, process, and technology.
One of the more interesting projects currently underway begins to address the void of information about a student once they leave an institution. Student “swirl” as it is called, presents even greater challenges for institutions trying to understand the ultimate success of a student in achieving their educational goal. This is particularly true for community colleges where it is common for a student to come for a couple semesters or years and transfer to a four year university. Or, they may have regular stop outs and take courses at other nearby institutions as convenience and demands of life dictate.
By combining enrollment data with National Student Clearinghouse (NSC) enrollment and degree verification data, an institution can get a more comprehensive picture of the long term outcomes for their students after they leave. The results of this project will provide a whole new level of measurement of long term persistence and graduation rates while giving institutional leaders a broad range of student dimensional categories to help analyze their own student success and intervention initiatives.
April 17, 2012 | Leave a Comment
I am at the Higher Ed Data Warehouse conference (HEDW) sitting in a session describing the procees of selecting a BI platform where cost was one of the primary considerations and amazed at the continued myth that open source is free.
Free as in “free puppies”, not “free beer”.
This is one of the best analogies I ever heard and I attribute to Linda Hilton from the Vermont State Colleges.
Apparently the institution presenting this session was surprised at the actual cost to pay for support, maintenance, and training. If you are in the process of selecting a BI technology, be sure you research the full cost picture as well as the functionality requirements.
Open Source may be a good option, but there are many commercial options such as Micro Strategy which give their full functionality for a given number of licences before having to pay license fees. SAP Business Objects online has a very low per user per month pricing where you don’t have worry about the hardware infrastructure. There are many possibilities to consider.