By Billy Huntsman
New Mexico State University is poorly organized, with too many layers of management, finds a staffing study conducted by Deloitte Consulting, commissioned by NMSU.
President Garrey Carruthers on September 22 presented the findings of Deloitte Consulting, a UK-based financial advisory and auditing firm contracted by the university last May to research the question: is NMSU overstaffed?
Rather than being overstaffed, Carruthers was told, NMSU has too many people reporting to top-level managers, and too few people reporting to lower level managers, creating a kind of inverted pyramid, when the model should look like an upright pyramid.
From Deloitte’s findings, which are based on NMSU staff, not faculty, NMSU has selected the following areas upon which to improve:
- Consider policy and procedures to standardize management span of control
- Consider policy and procedures to standardize administrative assistant staff coverage ratios
- Consider centralizing the IT service delivery model
- Consider centralizing the finance delivery model
- Consider policy and procedures to standardize procurement
Carruthers says, to better arrange the management span of control, some positions may get reassigned.
The second bullet point relates to additional Deloitte findings that many functions at NMSU operate without administrative assistants, resulting in people, who hold other jobs and responsibilities, performing the tasks that would otherwise be given to administrative assistants.
Facilities and Services, for example, operates with a worker/administrative assistant ratio of 65:1, when the ratio should be more like 13:1, says Deloitte.
The third bullet point also relates to non-IT people performing the duties of that position, as well as with the fourth bullet point and finance tasks.
The fifth and final bullet point relates to Deloitte’s findings that NMSU staff and faculty are purchasing supplies, ranging from pens, Post-Its, and paper reams to computers, from non-contracted suppliers. By doing so, Carruthers says, they are not taking advantage of the contracts NMSU and the State of New Mexico have established with certain suppliers, in order for NMSU and other schools to receive discounts on supplies, thus costing NMSU more money.
If NMSU can implement changes to the five areas listed above, which wil take about two to threw years, Deloitte has estimated that, over about seven years, NMSU can save an estimated $53 million in costs.
These funds will be used, Carruthers says, for teaching, research, better compensation for fewer staff, scholarship opportunities, and graduate assistant programs.
The hiring freeze, Carruthers says, started in March 2015, is still in effect for replacements and new hires. Carruthers says he, Provost Dan Howard, and Angela Throneberry, senior vice president for administration and finance, examine each applicant and consider, “Can this wait?” This goes, Carruthers says, for all positions, staff and faculty.
Carruthers says he had recently hired a physician for the Campus Health Center, which he called, “a no-brainer.”
Questions regarding the staffing study can be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org.
The next employee council forum will be on Wednesday, September 30, at 2:30 p.m. in Yates Auditorium of Domenici Hall. The topic will be an athletics update from Athletics Director Mario Moccia.