Queen Elizabeth Sixth Form College

The background

Queen Elizabeth Sixth Form College, based in Darlington, is a mixed sixth form college attended by 1,950 students over the age of sixteen and adults who attend evening courses.

It is one of the country’s leading colleges and has been awarded beacon status, which provides public recognition of excellence and innovation in the further education sector.

Queen Elizabeth Sixth Form College (QESFC) asked Capita to conduct a systems review to help automate outdated manual processes, improve reporting and share achievement data with students. Recommendations included using Microsoft SharePoint integrated with UNIT-e products to give them a single view of disparate data.

Why SharePoint?

QESFC was aware it had processes that were time-consuming and were not delivering data in a joined up way. For example, the college enrolment system was paper-based, as were the records of those students who changed or dropped courses, or left the college altogether.

Chris Hammond, Information Manager, was selected to oversee, implement and
maximise the benefits of the move to SharePoint. He says: "When assessing the suitability of SharePoint, we realised it fitted the brief and more. It could be used to link disparate systems and combine data for both input and reporting purposes; create workflows to automate previous manual processes; and provide a live-link into college data enabling both staff and students to access their own information."

Seeing the benefit

The improvements to workflow in the college were instantaneous as the integrated systems worked much more quickly.

“Now, if students drop, change or leave courses it is so much easier to inform the right people,” says Chris. “The personal tutor instigates the procedure, UNIT-e is changed and all the relevant teaching staff are notified automatically by email within a matter of minutes. In the past this would have taken several days to achieve with the manual system.

“We’ve seen a significant reduction in the administration time for the registration process, and updating the qualifications on entry now takes just two days; when it was paper-based, it took around two weeks to process.”

“We’ve seen a significant reduction in the administration time for the registration process, and updating the qualifications on entry now takes just two days. When it was paper-based, it took around two weeks
to process.”

Chris Hammond, Information
Manager, MIS Dept. Queen
Elizabeth College