USM Continuation Common Process Review

By Amy McDonald, UCD Agile

On October 22 2019, as part of the Unified Support Model (USM) rollout, we ran an Rapid Improvement Event focused on the implementation of the Continuation & Readmission Policy. Our focus was to agree & implement a common interim process for local operation of the Continuation Policy, and to identify an ideal process for future implementation. You can read more about our journey running our first Rapid Improvement Event and about the RIE on Continuation in the November WST Newsletter.

The key outcomes from the Rapid Improvement Event were;

  • common-processesEnsuring online student-facing information relating to Continuation is available, accessible & transparent to all students & staff
  • Standardising the format of meeting invitations and outputs
  • Designing the ideal report that matches the criteria & holds the content required to identify and track students whose performance triggers the Continuation Policy

After trialling the standard steps during February, we asked the Project Team for their feedback on four aspects of the common process; 1. Reporting, 2. Templates and Guidance Documentation, 3. Systems, 4. Online Information for Students.

We asked what worked well and what could be improved and gathered some quantitative feedback as well. We also held a session with the Project Team to verify and expand on some of the feedback and review the overall RIE format.

Some of the key insights were

  • The people who manage the process locally are the experts when it comes to student-focused processes. Their voice, as the subject matter experts, drove the project from initiation to close-out.
  • With the experts brought together, change could be implemented efficiently and successfully. This particular RIE opened up the opportunity to feed into the redrafting of the Continuation & Readmission Policy.
  • The RIE format is an effective and engaging way of sharing best practice, ensuring consistency and collaboration while acknowledging and respecting variation and flexibility. While the changes and improvements were tangible, it was an overall lengthy project for the staff. The Project Team found it to be a valuable experience and are eager to be involved in another such event.

With feedback from the Team and our own knowledge from lessons learned, we can now work with the Project Team to optimise the standardised steps of the process and the way we run future Rapid Improvement Events.

If you’re interested in learning more about Rapid Improvement Events you can contact our colleagues in UCD Agile at