Strategic Communication Research, Planning and Evaluation

Introduction to Projects Portfolio Determination

La Trobe University was established in 1964 in Melbourne, Victoria Australia. It is one of the verdant universities and is also part of innovative research universities. It is the third university in this state of Australia and occupies 12th position in Australia. It is a public research university. It offers both graduate and undergraduate courses for Arts Social science commerce and science health and engineering. It was ranked under top 100 universities by the times higher education world in university rankings (La Turbo, 2020). This assignment aims to conduct desk research on the issue of COVID-19 response in higher education. The assignment thus discusses the strengths, weakness, threats and opportunity of the issue as well as to conduct an organizational analysis containing stakeholder mapping.

Organisational Analysis

Organization Plan

After broad consultation with students, staff and stakeholders, a five-year strategic plan was released out by the university (La Turbo, 2020). The plan states that the university will keep on providing excellent education as well as actively serving the communities in which campus are located. The plan’s four core objectives are to provide outstanding student experience, student and graduate employability, research excellence and being a partner of choice for the industry. The strategy is developed by keeping mission, vision statements in mind.

Mission and Vision Statement

The mission statement of the university is to shape the future of students as well as the community by advance learning and knowledge. The vision statement of the university is to promote positive change and address major issues of remaining connected, inclusive and providing an excellent solution (La Turbo, 2020). The five-year strategic plan will enable La Trobe university to lead the nation in redefining university as per the modern look and will continue to serve the community.

Key Stakeholders of The University

Here are some key stakeholders of the organization

  • Students – Students are the most important and direct stakeholder. They depend on the system for getting the best education services.
  • Academic faculty – They are employed by the university to teach students based on their expertise (Cheshmberah, 2020).
  • Government – It focuses on the output of the higher education of mass.
  • Community members – It consists of non-governmental organizations, taxpayers and people of the region. Most of the organizations consider donations as their duty to contribute to the wider community members.

The Issue Experienced by The University

It is identified through research that the university currently is in disruption state as it has cancelled most of its in-person classes. The another biggest challenge for the universities is that there is a shortage of financials. They are facing an unexpected expense which is not possible for the universities to handle. It has made it difficult for the university to sustain in the market without having finance in hand. Ban on large gatherings has stooped new admissions which could give relief to the university. The university is tackling the issue by adopting online platforms for conducting regular sessions. It came up with online-only courses but adoption of the new technique is not that easy. It will take time to get things in traction. The students are not familiar with online learning and it is found that long classes are increasing strain in the eyes of the students (Hodges, Moore, Lockee, Trust & Bond, 2020). Moreover, not everyone is well equipped to take online classes and does not have the facilities available. In such a case, the university must adopt a hybrid model instead of relying solely on one of them. The hybrid model will help the university to conduct classes in university keeping social distancing and will also help those candidates who are not willing to attend in-person classes and are interested in online learning.

SWOT Analysis of The Organization

It is a method by which strengths, weakness and opportunity and threats of an organization can be identified. It is a strategic planning technique that assesses all the four aspects of the business and help in analysing whether the business can be conducted properly or not.

Internal

Strengths

· Great partnership with National art gallery

· Good public program and exhibitions

· Cultural partnerships and sponsorship

· Director of the university knows the cultural economy and visual arts (Regehr & Goel, 2020).

· Large student’s satisfaction

· Good cash flow

· High skilled academic faculty

Weaknesses

· Limited knowledge of the collection

· Limited information about the market

· Limited use of art collection in public

External

Opportunities

· Digitalization and exploitation of new technology

· Opportunities for professional development

· Opportunities for income streams

· Enhancement of public programs

· Conservation of art collection

Threats

· Confusion with brand, vision and purpose

· The requirement of new resources to overcome the weaknesses of the organization

 

Positive

Negative

Situational Analysis

The current situation of the entire world is miserable due to COVID-19 pandemic. Universities are facing a challenge and are no more an exception. They have completely cancelled all of their programs and facing financial issue (Sahu, 2020). The university is giving the payments of the students who have opted for food and accommodation but currently, they are not availing any such facilities. It is putting the burden on the university as their income has decreased but expenses increased. Since the university is currently shut off, therefore, it is not able to gain the profit that it used to before.

The inference of coronavirus has made the institution realize that there is a need for transformation that the need is to shift from thinking digital to being digital. Covid-19 has impacted the lives of all and it raised the need to adopt innovative ways of learning in all the levels of education. La Tarbo must move towards using a multi-faceted digital learning approach (Hodges, Moore, Lockee, Trust & Bond, 2020). This approach helps in addressing both short and long term goals. The organization must start curating the educational content and put them on the digital platform so that students can easily access the content which they want. Implementing everything on a digital platform is not a cakewalk, which will be achieved within a short period but if the institutions start implementing them in the right manner, it can become a lesson in resilience. 

Social Media Monitoring

Post: Results from student survey about remote transitioning

Date of post: 15Th June 2020

Date viewed: 31st August 2020

Platform: Website

Reach/analytics data: The analytical data states that COVID 19 has impacted the lives of several students at university. A total of 4776 students participated in the survey. They were asked different questions based on which themes are defined in the table given below.

Themes

Positive ( +ve)

Negative (-ve)

Neutral

Educational apps

76%

20%

4%

University is doing best in supporting continued study (LA turbo, 2020 a)

75.3%

15.5%

9.2%

Feel supported in online study

57.6%

22.8%

19.5%

Know who to connect for support services

66%

20%

14.1%

Conclusion on Projects Portfolio Determination

It can be concluded from the findings that La Trobe University was excelling before COVID-9 pandemic. However, the sudden outbreak of coronavirus changed the situation. The university cancelled many courses which it was going to start. Students future are at stake as it is impossible to start conducting the classes again with full strength. Though the university has many strengths it has a weakness as threats as well. The only option that the university must focus on is the digitalization of technology while using a hybrid model. The hybrid model will help the university to overcome all the current challenges that it is facing.

References for Projects Portfolio Determination

Cheshmberah, M. (2020). Projects portfolio determination based on key stakeholders’ expectations and requirements: Evidence from public university projects. Journal of Project Management, 5(2), 139-150.

Hodges, C., Moore, S., Lockee, B., Trust, T., & Bond, A. (2020). The difference between emergency remote teaching and online learning. Educause Review, 27.

La Turbo (2020). About us. Retrieved from https://www.latrobe.edu.au/about/vision.

La Turbo (2020 a). Results from student survey about the transition to remote learning. Retrieved from https://www.latrobe.edu.au/mylatrobe/results-from-student-survey-about-transition-to-remote-learning/

Regehr, C., & Goel, V. (2020). Managing COVID-19 in a Large Urban Research-Intensive University. Journal of Loss and Trauma, 1-17.

Sahu, P. (2020). Closure of universities due to Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19): Impact on education and mental health of students and academic staff. Cureus, 12(4).

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