student at laptop
Home › About › Departments and Offices › Information Technology › Projects

PIC (Process Improvement Committee)

What is the Process Improvement Committee?

The Process Improvement Committee (PIC) is composed of cross-functional campus leaders who have been charged with improving overall adminisrative systems by identifying areas that new improvement. 
Current members are : Dave Leavitt (Chair/IT), Edit Vidalon-Moscoso (Student), Howard Smalls (Business Office), Jessica Ayres (Financial Aid), Stefan Nachev (IT), Nouran Hashimi (IR), Nora Marquez (Registrar), Samiyah Wright (Program Managers), Thom Shepard (Student Services), Yukti Singh (Admissions), Rebecca Levy (Communications),


Partner with the PAU Community to help achieve the strategic goals of the institution through the use of continous process improvement tools & methodologies. 


Create an organizational culture that fosters collaboration accross Palo Alto University while striving to improve and make a positive impact in support of the University's Mission.

Goals & Objectives

  1. Prioritize Projects in support of Strategic Plan: Develop a system and prioritize projects in support of PAU's strategic plan. Results should improve the overall satisfaction of students, staff, and faculty while minimizing manual processes, lowering costs, and improving quality of service across the institution.

  2. Become a trusted resource: Work closely with key stakeholders through the organization to develop a continous improvement knowledge base while providing training and resources so departments can deliver results on their own.

  3. Measure & Evaluate: Develop a quantitative/qualitative framework to evaluate success/failrues of projects. Celebrate successes and increase transparency throughout PAU.

What is Process Improvement?

Process Improvement is a standardized approach that is used to make incremental improvements in processes. Process improvement done correctly results in faster, efficient, and cost effective ways to deliver services and support to students, staff, and faculty. 

Process Improvement is:

  • a continous cycle of planning, 
  • an effort to improve the quality of products, services or processes
  • a methodology focused on identifying and eliminating activities that add cost without adding value, thereby improving the flow of work processes

What are examples of triggers that a process evaluation may be needed?

  • A change in current processes
  • A change in regulatory or accreditation requirements
  • Introduction of new systems or tools
  • Evidence of areas in need of improvement based upon feedback from students, staff, and faculty.

Submit a Project Request

Before you start, you will need to have a good idea of what the project consists of and what the outcomes will be. You should know who from your office will be dedicated to work on the project, and what other offices are likely to be affected.

1. Fill out our Project Request Form. Project Request Form

2. Upon submission of your completed project request form, you will receive a confirmation email.

3. A member of the Project Managment Team will review your request and contact you to discuss the project information.

If it is determined that the Project Management Team is going to proceed with your project, it will enter the Initiation Phase of the Project Lifecycle, and you will be asked to complete a Project Charter.



Status Description

Green: On Schedule, within budget, managing scope or behind with an approved cariance

Yellow: Behind schedule and/or over budget, or with scope variances that are unapproved but for which a remediation plan has been developed to provide resolution by project completion.

Red: Behind schedule, and/or over budget, or with scope variances that are unapproved, but for which a remediation plan has NOT been developed to provide resolution by project completion.

Blue: Project Completed

Current Projects
Project Phase Status
Updating Student Billing Statements
Project Manager: Howard Smalls
Projected Start/End: 05/01/18 - 08/01/18
Project Scope: Update student invoices in the portal to make them easier to understand and ensure accuracy.
MyPAU Studfent Portal Redesign 2.0
Project Manager: Karen Savage
Projected Start/End: 01/01/18 - Ongoing
Project Scope: Improve the user experience in terms of look and feel, usability, starting with the student constituency as a template for the rest of the MyPAU Portal
Overall Students Communication Review

Project Manager: Thom Shepard (Student Services)
Projected Start/End:07/01/18
Project Scope: Review exisitng communciation flows with students and revamp strucutre. Developing the ability to send Macro/Micro level communications while minimizing the amount of email sent to students.
Project Management Tools & Training

Project Manager: David Leavitt (Information Technology)
Projected Start/End: Ongoing
Project Scope: Develop templates and training guides for all PIC project leads. (e.g. Project Charters, initiation, tracking, monitoring, and closure) Evaluate software platforms to assist project managers to track (WBS) work breakdown structures.
Future Projects
Project Phase Status
Online Student Payment Plan Portal (CashNet)
Project Manager: Howard Smalls (Business Office)
Projected Start/End:
Project Scope: Develop an online payment portal for students that need to be on payment plans.
Pending (Future)
Financial Literacy Program for Students

Project Manager: Jessica Ayres (Financial Aid)
Projected Start/End:
Project Scope: Hire staff member who will be responsible for creating/implementing a financial literacy program instituion wide and ensure adequate resources are in place to support the program.
Pending (Future)
PAU Staff Resource Center (Website)

Project Manager: Kristen Guy (Institutuonal Research)
Projected Start/End:
Project Scope: Develop a staff resource center to better service our staff members by providing important and relevant information to help increase overall efficiency and prodcutivity at PAU.
Pending (Future)
Student Employment (FWS&Non_FWS) & Payroll Process redesign

Project Manager: Debbie Wu (Business Office)
Projected Start/End:
Project Scope: Update the FWS & Non-FWS programs for better reporting purposes while reviewing current workflows to improve overall design for students and supervising staff.
Pending (Future)
Electronic navigatable policy catalog (Website)

Project Manager: Jessica Ayres (Financial Aid)
Projected Start/End:
Project Scope: Research for software product and implement navigatable catalog online.
Pending (Future)
Completed Projects
Project Phase Status
Tuition Late Fee Policy and Notification
Project Manager: June Klein
Projected Start/End: 06/01/18-07/01/18
Purpose: Updated tuition late fee policy developed by collaboration between the OAA and Business Office.
Late Registration Fee Notification
Project Manager: Howard Smalls
Projected Start/End: 06/01/18-07/01/18
Purpose: Utilziing notepad automation will be created to notify students of upcoming late fees.
Short-Term Billing Solutions
Project Manager: Kristen Guy & Karen Savage
Projected Start/End: 11/01/17 - 04/01/18
Purpose: Address short-term billing issues that impact students. Fix issues with current queries and HTML templates, update the student bill in the portal and remove the irrelevant billing links, work with departments to clearly define roles, and document processes.
Automating Academic Calendar
Project Manager: Kristen Guy
Projected Start/End: 06/01/18-07/01/18
Purpose: Streamline academic calendar by using data from Jenzabar Student Information System to accurately display important dates (registration, billing, etc...) in an easy to read calendar that syncs with Google Calendar.


1791 Arastradero Road
Palo Alto, CA 94304

Phone: (800) 818-6136 Fax: (650) 433-3888





Twitter Icon Facebook Icon LinkedIn icon YouTube icon Tintup icon