Cognos, Exeter Help NACUBO Universities Compare Tuition Strategies

Business intelligence and performance management firm Cognos and higher ed IT consultants Exeter Group have helped the Washington, DC-based National Association of College and University Business Officers (NACUBO) add an application to its website that will help higher education administrators compare tuition discount strategies.

NACUBO in the past has collected this data and distributed it to its members as a flat file on CD-ROM but has never offered a method to let them analyze the data. With the new Benchmarking Tool, NACUBO members can go online to compare data against self-selected peers.

“This solution has evolved the tuition discounting survey from a ‘one size fits all’ set of complex, static data to a dynamic decision support model that is more personalized and more meaningful to each higher education institution,” said Phil Doolittle, executive vice president and chief operations and planning officer at the University of Redlands (Redlands, CA), in a prepared statement. “The ease of use is also impressive – instead of digging out information from a giant report, we can now pick our peer set, customize analysis parameters and easily drill straight to the answers we need.”

Exeter Group developed the system, which is based on Cognos 8 Business Intelligence architecture, which provides reporting, data analysis, scorecarding and business event management. The result lets users perform multi-dimensional analysis to find tuition discount techniques that are appropriate to their university or college in a way that is anonymous for all parties.

NACUBO's Benchmarketing Tool, the first in a series of online tools to be rolled out by the organization, will go live this month for 425 participating schools, and will cover more than 700 colleges and universities by fall. Future benchmarking offerings will include endowment management and financial indicators.

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About the Author

David Kopf is a freelance technology writer and marketing consultant, and can be reached at david@dkcopy.com.

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