Leveraging lessons learned and action items from PM 1.0, the PM 1.5 framework was built to help “move the work forward,” and that happened with the help of some tools and templates we introduced which will be discuss later. The PM Department also led an effort to prioritize projects throughout the district and implemented the Initiative Alignment & Prioritization model.
Like the previous framework, PM 1.5 featured single Department teams (e.g., Portfolio Services) at the presenting table with a singular focus on how each respective Division/Department was performing. Although, we continued to see a range of presentation styles, we did see more Divisions/Departments incorporating more staff in the preparation leading up to the session.
Length of Presentation & Core Elements
PM 1.5 required a little less time to prepare from a presentation slide standpoint. Each team delivered a two hour presentation which included as many as 25 charts. A few important elements included in the presentation were the SWOT Analyses, work plans, and cost benefit analyses templates that teams were asked to complete. These new tools and templates were introduced to give teams a more structured way to approach executing projects, so that we could ultimately positively affect student achievement. In some cases, this was the first time team members had seen or used these types of templates, so the learning curve was steep at times. We believe the organization gained a new respect for how we should think about the implementation of well-intentioned projects, and that we must think of the Return on Investment.
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Budget Data & Metrics
As mentioned earlier, PM 1.5 was about moving the work forward, which included the introduction of the cost benefit analysis template. This was also an exercise to get the organization on the same page in terms of how we look at budgeting for programs and how teams present their respective financials. Because budgets were previously presented in incremental based budgeting format, we required each Division/Department to complete a standardized budget sheet with only the line items varying slightly. This was a first step toward the ultimate goal of moving the District towards Performance Based Budgeting.
PM 1.5 also built off the measures of success identified in the previous PM framework, and these metrics were updated or as needed. We did see some slight improvement in our College & Career Readiness measures and many of our Strategy & Operations units (e.g., Food and Nutrition Services, and Student Transportation & Fleet Services) reported improved data as a result of improved efficiencies.
Performance Management Impact
The Performance Management department has gone through a rapid evolution in its first two years of existence. The department has introduced tools, templates, and concepts that are not traditionally found in education, and senior leadership has had a significant learning curve. Below are some highlights of how Performance Management has positively impacted the District:
- Transportation: Cost per District operated bus reduced by almost 40%.
- Food and Nutrition Services: Meals per labor hour increased by almost 20%.
- Procurement: P-Card Transactions ratio grew from 27.6% to 33%.
- Information & Technology: Ratio of students to computers improved by 25%.
- Information & Technology: First contact resolution rate improved from 57% to 86%.
- Designed and launched Initiative Alignment & Prioritization framework to help categorize for the first time Critical, High, Medium and Low priority projects.
- Increased usage of new templates (e.g. work plans & cost benefit analyses) within Divisions to help guide and manage workflows.
- District grade improved from C in 2013 to B in 2014.
- BCPS experienced 3-point increase in reading learning gains.
- BCPS experienced 2-point increase in math learning gains.
- Our lowest 25% students experienced 5-point increase in math learning gains.
- Contributed to a greater data orientation, better organization of data (e.g., Early Childhood Education).
- Influenced significant, new ways of working (e.g., Academics: BEST Blueprint).