Virginia Tech began an administrative and operations review this week as it builds capacity to support its growing footprint across the commonwealth.

Senior Vice President for Operations and Administration Dwayne Pinkney launched the strategic initiative to deliver administrative, financial, operational, and business services in the most cost-efficient and effective way possible.

The first step was hiring management consulting firm Deloitte to help understand current work processes and identify areas for improvement. Deloitte has demonstrated success working with large, complex organizations and, more specifically, experience working with higher education institutions of the scope, scale, and complexity of Virginia Tech.

Its review will consider several key areas, including finance, business operations, and facilities management, and will include processes, transactions, structure, and policies at the enterprise level.

The university has established a website that will be used to keep the campus engaged and informed about our work.

“We have a bold vision for transdisciplinary teaching, learning, research, and engagement that is generating excitement throughout the Commonwealth of Virginia,” said Virginia Tech President Tim Sands. “Under Dwayne’s guidance, this administrative review and implementation is an important next step to ensure that the university continues to grow and build capacity to support this mission-critical work.”

The goals of the process include eliminating barriers, unnecessary work flows, and duplicative or redundant efforts at all levels within the university; using best practices to deliver services; leveraging technology to automate and simplify processes and reduce transaction times; professionalizing workplaces; developing and using cost-effective and administrative-efficient operating principles; leading a culture of continuous improvement; ensuring administrative and operations work is aligned with strategic priorities; and deploying leading change management principles to navigate new systems, processes, and structures.

“As Virginia Tech expands to support a growing health sciences campus in Roanoke — which includes the Fralin Biomedical Research Institute and the Virginia Tech Carilion School of Medicine — agricultural research and Extension centers across the state, programs in the National Capital Region, and the Innovation Campus in Alexandria, we must ensure that the university is operating ‘Beyond Boundaries’ in its administration as well as its programming,” Pinkney said. “We’re looking for ways to eliminate barriers and unnecessary bureaucracy while embracing a continuous improvement mindset. We will deliver services that are responsive, nimble, and best in class.”

Pinkney, a member of President Sands’ executive staff, already has met with his team and begun conversations about moving forward. Pinkney said the process will be “transparent and inclusive” and that employees will be engaged and informed throughout the review.

“Our employees are our greatest asset,” Pinkney said. “I value their commitment to Virginia Tech and am interested in learning from them how we, together, can advance the services we provide to campus and be recognized as the best in class."

The first phase of the project, which includes the review, commences this month and is expected to be completed by this fall.

— Written by Mason Adams