“As CIOs work to implement and maintain complex technology infrastructures, Tambellini supports them with insight, recommendations, and encouragement.”Travis Nation
CIO, Seattle University
In December 2021, Seattle University’s CIO, Chris Van Liew, stepped into a new role as vice president of Strategic Initiatives. Van Liew had established a relationship with the Tambellini Group throughout his tenure as CIO. Thus, when Travis Nation, previously associate CIO, became the new CIO of Seattle University, Van Liew advised him to engage with Tambellini.
While at a previous organization, Nation had worked with Vicki Tambellini when she supported his team with contract negotiations for a new ERP. He reports that Vicki Tambellini mentored his team, helping them navigate the procurement process and obtain the best value possible for the organization. While working on the project, Nation also leveraged Tambellini’s annual Market Trends and Leaders Report to investigate the US higher education financial management and human capital management systems market.
While Nation had experienced firsthand how Tambellini provides support for specific projects like selecting a new ERP system or negotiating a contract, he did not realize the extent of services. Nation says he “very quickly came to appreciate the Tambellini membership.”
“The Tambellini Strategic Advisor gave me enough information and asked the right questions so that my first presentation to the trustees went very well … To me, that was worth its weight in gold.”
Soon after beginning his new role as CIO of Seattle University, Nation met with a Tambellini Strategic Advisor for a scheduled check-in. At the time, Nation was preparing a presentation for a subgroup of university trustees. Nation notes that he shared his initial thoughts for the presentation with the Tambellini Strategic Advisor, who asked key questions and provided valuable feedback. The conversation helped Nation consider new perspectives and allowed him to bring his points together more cohesively. “He [the Tambellini Strategic Advisor] gave me enough information and asked the right questions so that my first presentation to the trustees went very well … To me, that was worth its weight in gold.”
Since then, Nation says that Tambellini has continued contributing to his learning journey as a CIO. Currently, Nation is employing Tambellini Advisory Services for an ERP assessment. He reports that Tambellini analyst engagements and resources in the Tambellini portal have also provided support as his team upgrades technology infrastructure in specific areas like housing and residence life.
Nation sees Tambellini Services as a low-cost way to mitigate risk for anyone new to the CIO role. “It’s great to have somebody outside the organization with a fresh perspective who I can be completely transparent with … It’s having that advisor, that sounding board.”
As CIOs work to implement and maintain complex technology infrastructures, Tambellini supports them with insight, recommendations, and encouragement. Nation reports that Tambellini’s services help him attain a “broad-brush” perspective on how Seattle University’s IT efforts align with wide-scale higher education technology trends and challenges.
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