One of the premier business schools in the country, the University of Sydney Business School Management and Executive Education portfolio (M&EE) supports over 500 MBA students and roughly 400 alumni and is continuously ranked as one of the top business schools in the world. As part of the M&EE portfolio, the MBA Career Services team is responsible for the corporate engagement and career management of the MBA students and alumni who are experienced professionals. Yet, the team was struggling on how to effectively track all careers activities, services and resources to students and alumni, manage daily operational workflows and enhance communications with their growing MBA community. To support these efforts, the University of Sydney’s Business School Management and Executive Education Portfolio adopted Symplicity CSM Enterprise in 2019.
Initial focuses for the MBA Careers team included improving workflows and gaining data-based insights to support MBA students and address key stakeholder needs. One way they achieved this was through utilising the superior reporting functionality within CSM to track student engagement which then is analysed and used to support a number of fundamental activities such as reporting to management, accreditation bodies, and is used for various rankings.
“The reporting capabilities within CSM is incredible – it’s highly customisable, you can report on basically anything within the system, and the information is rich and meaningful. It’s been really helpful for our year-to-year review processes for service offerings, resourcing and strategy,” said Mandy Chow, Administration Officer of the MBA programs, who has been heavily involved in the Enterprise implementation process.
Now, the MBA Careers team has expanded its use of CSM to oversee the entire student life cycle with an extension to alumni engagement. Creating their own custom fields for reporting, the team can now track engagement with its MBA students to better support their career progressions, connect them to employment opportunities at MBA level, and easily manage the career interests MBA students plan to explore throughout the program.
With reputable data, the MBA Careers team can now make better decisions on ways to support their students and alumni, “It's all coming back to what data do you have,” said Betty Xiang, Career & Corporate Relations Manager (MBA Programs). “Without accurate data, we're not going to be able to make any effective decisions. So CSM is playing a very critical role there in terms of the effectiveness and efficiency of our operations.”
With CSM, the MBA careers team now can robustly support a wide range of activities, from onboarding new MBA students into the programs, running industry events & career development pathways, communicating with students and alumni on regular basis, to enhanced engagement with alumni as the team continues to offer lifetime career services to students once they graduate. All of which, the team was struggling to achieve on a single platform prior to the adoption of CSM.
“The CSM platform is a critical element in terms of when we visit our careers strategy, and the decisions we make around it. To identify areas that we might need to improve, or see areas we are doing well in, we really rely on CSM to help us make better decisions and see what’s working,” said Xiang. For the University of Sydney’s MBA programs, Symplicity has been a keen partner to help drive positive student and alumni engagement, meet other key stakeholder requirements, and support strategic decision making. Both Chow and Xiang have sent out monthly newsletters of top jobs and companies hiring directly through the CSM system and keep students up to date on careers & industry events, resources, and other relevant opportunities.
In the future, the University of Sydney’s MBA Careers team hopes to launch CSM’s mock interview feature and its resume builder as it continues expansion of the CSM platform to better support their MBA students and alumni in years to come.
As the University’s MBA programs continue to grow, CSM is right there, also growing to meet the demands of the students and alumni. “The depth and breadth of CSM’s functionality is outstanding. It’s so versatile, and because Symplicity is constantly developing, we’re confident in its ability to continue to meet the changing needs of our community,” Chow said.