Business Operations

Sessions by Track

Business Operations

For a personalized experience, attendees may elect to attend sessions in any track. Tracks do not include general sessions or deep dives.

  • Affordability and the Competition Facing Independent Schools

    Business Operations
    Monday, 10:30 am - 11:30 am

    The demand to provide access and affordability to our independent schools is greater than ever before. Academically focused institutions and personalized learning networks are just a couple of the competitors that have emerged to offer today’s independent school families cost-effective, innovative educational options. This session will include an overview of the financial trends and educational choices affecting independent schools as well as offer strategies to help leadership teams position their institutions in a market of rising competition.

    Learning Objective: Participants will learn strategies to help better position their schools in a market of rising competition.

    Christina Dotchin, Director of Business Development, The Enrollment Management Association
    Heather Hoerle, Executive Director and Chief Executive Officer, The Enrollment Management Association

  • Enhancing Financial Sustainability and Affordability Through Advanced Financial Planning

    Business Operations
    Monday, 10:30 am - 11:30 am

    Given the intensely competitive enrollment environment for independent schools, parents’ scrutiny of value propositions and increasing affordability pressures, it is vital for schools to systematically assess the efficiency and effectiveness of all expenditure areas as well as optimize non-tuition revenue — and do so in a manner that actively engages every major school constituency. Learn how St. John's Prep utilized comparative financial benchmarking and a disciplined, engaging financial planning process to identify $9 million in incremental savings and non-tuition revenue that helped increase its affordability and sustainability. Understand how to apply St. John Prep's learnings to your own school through facilitated exercises.

    Learning Objective: Participants will learn how to utilize financial and operational benchmarking to identify affordability and sustainability improvement opportunities, as well as how to successfully engage the entire school leadership team in a financial re-engineering process.

    Harry Bloom, Senior Vice President, Client Solutions, Measuring Success
    Cynthia Fanikos, Assistant Head of School for Finance and Chief Financial Officer, St. John’s Preparatory School

  • What Got You Here Won't Get You There

    Business Operations
    Monday, 1:15 pm - 2:15 pm

    How did one school, when faced with the loss of a notable sponsorship revenue stream, take an introspective look at its remaining revenues and expenses to continue operations? By focusing on the true cost of an empty seat and cohort size, the school was able to stabilize and then grow net tuition revenue (NTR) and match faculty FTEs to current and planned student enrollment. Additionally, successful investment in the area of fundraising allowed for diversification in revenue sources.

    Learning Objective: Participants will learn how to manage fluctuating revenue sources by using financial aid as a tool for filling empty seats with mission-appropriate students.

    Laura Hartog, Director of Admissions, St. John’s Preparatory School
    Sherry Krebsbach, Executive Director of Finance and Facilities, St. John’s Preparatory School

  • Dissect Net Tuition Revenue — then Rebuild for the Future

    Business Operations
    Monday, 3:00 pm - 4:00 pm

    Dissecting the three components of net tuition revenue — enrollment, price and yield (cents-on-the-dollar after aid) — can be a valuable way to understand your school's financial trajectory and its competitive position. It is also a powerful foundation for meaningful conversation with your board and other constituents. Use Excel tools and models to drive robust financial modelling and critical strategic insights that will help you investigate key issues such as aligning financial aid delivery with your school’s mission and pursuing sustainable NTR strategies.

    Learning Objective: Participants will learn about the drivers of the school's net tuition revenue, how they interact with resource (i.e., expense) needs, and how to use concrete tools to engage in a strategic, collaborative effort to improve the school's financial trajectory.

    Mark Vosskamp, Chief Financial Officer, Girls Preparatory School

  • Advancing Business Excellence in Independent Schools

    Business Operations
    Tuesday, 8:30 am - 9:30 am

    The business officer’s job is multifaceted, so no one knows it all, but a smart independent school leader knows where to find answers. This session will feature the powerful resources NBOA offers to support schools as well as the latest analysis from our custom data collection and analysis platform: Business Intelligence for Independent Schools (BIIS, pronounced "biz"). NBOA has recently released or updated tools available to support your school’s operational performance and financial position, including: just-released standards for independent school finance, governance, and other business operations (formerly known as Practical Guidance); Key Financial Indicators of Vitality; The NBOA Financial Dashboard for Independent Schools; and the Composite Financial Index (CFI) Calculator (available in BIIS). This session will also feature an opportunity to hear from NBOA in-house content experts and connect with peers from across the industry.

    Learning Objective: Participants will learn the new and updated NBOA tools and resources available to support their work.

    James Palmieri, Ed.D., Senior Vice President, NBOA
    Jennifer Hillen, CPA, CGMA, Vice President, Professional Development and Business Affairs, NBOA
    Mary Kay Markunas, Director, Member Resources and Programs, NBOA

  • Envision a Future with Effective Outsourced Relationships

    Business Operations
    Tuesday, 8:30 am - 9:30 am

    As the independent school industry looks ahead, outsourcing provides effective ways to build capacity and reduce costs. Building great relationships with vendors can be challenging and time consuming. Aspen Academy has added expertise to its administrative team by developing true partnerships with outsourced services, keeping them engaged and increasing their discretionary effort. Through case studies of relationships with several of our vendor partners, we provide you with practical strategies to optimize your outsourced relationships.

    Learning Objective: Participants will learn best practices for managing outsourced relationships and how to leverage them to get the best return on investment.

    Lynda Sailor, Co-Founder, Chief Operating and Financial Officer, Aspen Academy

  • Practical Tools to Assess and Grow Your Auxiliary Programs

    Business Operations
    Tuesday, 8:30 am - 9:30 am

    Join three experienced directors of auxiliary and summer programs for a hands-on, practical session that will empower attendees to improve and grow their school’s auxiliary programs. This session will introduce and explore the use of several tools that CFOs and school leadership can implement to strategically assess current programs and determine best directions to build future programs. Areas of focus will include strategic goals, asset inventory, capacity analysis and the concept of a program “scorecard.” Participants will leave with customizable resources and a clear strategy to envision a new future for their auxiliary programs.

    Learning Objective: Participants will learn how to use several tools to assess, evaluate and enhance their auxiliary programs.

    Karen McCann McLelland, Director of Auxiliary Programs, Sidwell Friends School
    Nat Saltonstall, Director of Summer Programs, Beaver Country Day School
    Ryan Williams, Director of Auxiliary Programs, The Lawrenceville School

  • Automation, Artificial Intelligence and School Operations — Oh My!

    Business Operations
    Tuesday, 10:15 am - 11:15 am

    The automation movement is already in your school — and you probably don't realize it or recognize it for what it is. Experts predict that 10-30% of schools will not be here in 10 years. Why is that and what you can do to ensure your school is in the group that survives? Do the models from other industries apply to our sector, and what is the real lesson for independent schools? Incremental change is hard to detect, but disruption readily presents itself. While it is better to be the disruptor than to be disrupted, most of the change we will experience will probably be incremental.

    Learning Objective: Participants will learn practical tools to enhance workflow efficiencies in their core areas of responsibility and develop a deeper understanding of change in the industry.

    Damian Kavanagh, Executive Director, Mid-South Independent School Business Officers
    Aggie Malter, Executive Director, Philadelphia Area Independent School Business Officers Association

  • Trends and Tools for Digital Engagement To Drive Results

    Business Operations
    Tuesday, 2:45 pm - 3:45 pm

    Explore the latest trends in integration with web and data that business officers need to know, with an eye toward driving enrollment through web engagement and increasing communications and retention with digital workflows. The presenter will draw on more than two decades of experience working with hundreds of schools worldwide to share the latest tips for what will make a school financially successful in 2020 and beyond. You'll leave inspired to implement new ideas to increase enrollment, bolster retention and make your life easier.

    Learning Objective: Participants will learn the latest best practices to drive digital engagement and improve retention, enrollment and advancement, and will examine the tools that make this happen, including some that make business officers' lives easier.

    Rob DiMartino, Co-Founder and Chief Evangelist, Finalsite

  • Achieving 403(b) Plan Compliance While Reducing Costs and Administrative Tasks

    Business Operations
    Wednesday, 10:30 am - Noon
    15-min Goldmine

    How does a school achieve full 403(b) compliance and deliver a critical benefit without adding to cost or management time requirements, and without having to abandon the investment funds familiar to faculty and staff? Learn more about a solution that can improve the process, reduce school and employee costs, and mitigate risk to the school and the plan fiduciaries — all delivered through a dedicated, multi-disciplined service team. Understand how to meet all plan needs, including account management, third-party investment advisory services, ERISA legal support and education specialists who counsel employees, along with the completion of signature-ready Form 5500s and annual audit packages.

    Learning Objective: Participants will learn how to gain full 403(b) plan compliance while reducing cost and time spent on plan management.

    Tyler Hindermann, Vice President, USI Consulting Group
    Chris Martin, Senior Vice President, USI Consulting

  • After School: Realizing the Value in an Underappreciated Asset

    Business Operations
    Wednesday, 10:30 am - Noon
    15-min Goldmine

    After-school programs can be so much more than a snack and homework help. They can offer a meaningful experience for students while supporting marketing, enrollment and financial goals. This idea-packed session will feature a discussion of five strategies independent schools can pursue to enhance the quality of their after-school programming. Examples from Germantown Friends School and other leading independent schools will highlight how a quality program is developed, as well as how it can enhance your admissions, marketing, academic and financial goals while simultaneously creating a stronger and more cohesive school community.

    Learning Objective: Participants will learn five innovations that their after-school team can introduce to improve the overall quality of their extended-day program and tap into the potential value in the hours between dismissal and pick up.

    Betsy MacIver Neiva, Ph.D., Director of Auxiliary Programming, Germantown Friends School
    Page Fahrig-Pendse, Ed.D., Associate Head of School, Germantown Friends School

  • Clear the Clutter! Transforming to a Paperless Business Office

    Business Operations
    Wednesday, 10:30 am - Noon
    15-min Goldmine

    The session will explore the efficiencies to be gained by transitioning to a paperless business office. Learn more about utilizing a time-keeping payroll module and a digital credit card/expense management system as well as the benefits of a cloud -based storage environment and desktop scanner.

    Learning Objective: Participants will learn the strategies and benefits of building efficiencies in their business office by moving to a paperless environment.

    David Barresi, Controller, Stuart Country Day School of the Sacred Heart

  • Conducting an Investment Management RFP for an Independent School

    Business Operations
    Wednesday, 10:30 am - Noon
    15-min Goldmine

    Your board has decided to outsource the investment management of your endowment. Now what? While there are many choices of consultants and outsourced CIOs offering their services, what are the factors in making such an important decision? The presenters will offer a detailed analysis of their process from initial screening to RFP construction to final selection. Learn about such factors as asset allocation, manager selection and fee analysis, as well as risk profiling, analysis of potential conflict and other criteria that are pivotal to making informed decisions on outsourcing investment management services for your endowment.

    Learning Objective: Participants will learn best practices for managing an endowment RFP process including effective board communications, selection criteria, interview techniques and decision factors for selecting an endowment manager for your school.

    Hung Bui, Associate Head of School and Chief Operating Officer, Polyprep Country Day School
    John Regan, Chairman of the Investment Committee, Polyprep Country Day School

  • Enrollment Dynamics Case Study: Leveraging Open Capacity

    Business Operations
    Wednesday, 10:30 am - Noon
    15-min Goldmine

    Kingsley Montessori School found itself at a crossroads after setting a strategic goal of growing the elementary program, but then seeing enrollment flatten and total applications decline. Learn how the leadership at Kingsley Montessori has worked creatively to address significant challenges regarding sustainability and affordability, with a specific look at targeted scholarships that attempt to fill the school to capacity and increase socio-economic diversity.

    Learning Objective: Participants will learn how to maximize the enrollment capacity of an independent school within a context of existing physical and staffing capacity but limited financial resources and challenging market dynamics.

    James Bonsey, Associate Head of School / Chief Financial and Operating Officer, Kingsley Montessori School

  • Envisioning the Future of Auxiliary Programs

    Business Operations
    Wednesday, 10:30 am - Noon
    15-min Goldmine

    Auxiliary programs have the opportunity to amplify your school’s brand, attract prospective students and be a significant source of revenue. This session will focus on how auxiliary programs can become that “third” source of revenue adding to a school’s primary two, tuition and development. Learn how schools are envisioning the future of their auxiliary programs beyond the traditional summer programs, after-school programs and facility rentals. Hear about howSt. John’s Prep developed a separate brand, and how it focuses on developing auxiliary programs that will make a significant financial difference for the school.

    Learning Objective: Participants will walk away with an actionable plan to develop and enhance their auxiliary programs with clear strategic goals in mind.

    Ryan Bird, Director of Auxiliary Programming, St. John’s Prep
    Bill Rouse, Founding Member, AUXS

  • Event Management in Education: Using Your Facilities to Increase Enrollment

    Business Operations
    Wednesday, 10:30 am - Noon
    15-min Goldmine

    With everything educational institutions manage, events can often fall to the bottom of the list. However, proper event management can be highly beneficial for your institution. With well-run events and streamlined processes comes safer events, increased student involvement and community engagement. There are also huge benefits of increased student recruitment and retention, as well as recouped revenue. Join us as we discuss streamlining the event management process; engaging your community; collecting funds; mitigating risk and hosting safe events; and using data to drive future event-related decisions.

    Learning Objective: Participants will learn how event management can benefit their institution, including how it impacts enrollment.

    David Marcus, Campus Business Manager, deToledo High School
    Brandon Jordan, Sales Manager, Dude Solutions

  • Is Outsourcing IT in Your Future?

    Business Operations
    Wednesday, 10:30 am - Noon
    15-min Goldmine

    Independent schools are often faced with managing tighter budgets with fewer people. That can be a real challenge in our IT departments, where technology and compliance requirements are constantly changing, and it feels like we need even more staff to keep pace. Technology is such a broad field that no one person has expertise in every area. That is why two schools decided to outsource our IT services. Learn how they made the decision and transition to outsource IT and what they've learned so far.

    Learning Objective: Participants will learn the benefits and considerations involved in outsourcing IT services, including financial impacts. Participants will learn contract terms and conditions, as well as how to merge existing IT staff with outsourced IT staff to form a cohesive department.

    Donna Strouse, Chief Financial Officer, Riverbend School
    Amy Fredericks, Chief Financial Officer, Concord Academy

  • Thinking Ahead: the Pros and Cons of Continuous Enrollment

    Business Operations
    Wednesday, 10:30 am - Noon
    15-min Goldmine

    Should your school switch from issuing annual re-enrollment contracts to implementing continuous enrollment? Before you consider making a change, join us to explore the pros and cons of continuous enrollment and the individual state requirements. Learn to identify potential downfalls so you can protect your school and avoid headaches.

    Learning Objective: Participants will learn the benefits and pitfalls of continuous enrollment and whether continuous enrollment is right for their school.

    Scott Delleville, Sales Director, SchoolAdmin