Syntellis Performance Solutions offers financial planning solutions across several verticals, including healthcare, financial institutions, and higher education. The company held its annual Syntellis Summit in mid-May 2022. An entirely virtual event, Summit 2022 included several panels for higher education users.
As higher education institutions face funding challenges and enrollment pressures, financial planning and the tools that assist in the process remain a core focus for administrators. Several key takeaways emerged over the course of the Syntellis event:
While some institutions have created long-range financial planning processes over the past decade, many lack the staffing, expertise, or toolsets to create and execute these processes in a repeatable way. COVID-19 accelerated the need for institutions to have a more comprehensive and agile financial outlook. Additionally, the pandemic highlighted the necessity of programmatic or initiative-based long-range planning. Institutions need deep and broad analysis and visual representations of long-range financial health and expectations in order to pivot quickly.
Several sessions from the Summit highlighted this increasing focus on long-range planning, and a few standard practices surfaced, including
Institutional practitioners also emphasized the need for specialized technology to support this process. Read more about considerations for leadership when selecting a budget and planning tool here.
One of the core components of industry conferences is the opportunity to share, learn, and build upon best practice knowledge and application. This year’s Summit highlighted several best practices institutions should consider as they mature financial planning processes:
Financial planning tools are embracing robust data analytics and reporting functions to take full advantage of the data being consolidated in one place. During the Summit, Syntellis highlighted Axiom’s reporting capabilities. It is worth noting that Axiom’s reporting and analytics functionality, referred to as Axiom Intelligence, is grouped into three core types:
These three core function groups highlight the diverse reporting needs of higher education financial planning. Providing a diverse set of tools such as these allows institutions to offer user-friendly financial planning tools by role and support complex reporting needs for unique users and situations.
As evidenced in the Summit sessions, higher education institutions continue to progress in their understanding of and ability to use modern financial planning tools to better align institutional strategy to the increasingly complex environment in which they must operate. Vendors in the space, such as Syntellis, continue to focus on helping institutions meet those complex goals.
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