York introduces University Services Centre to make services easier to access, faster and more consistent

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Soon, it will be easier to access high-quality administrative services at York.

The University is taking the first step in establishing an integrated shared services entity – the University Services Centre (USC). The USC will bring together high-volume administrative services from across functions, such as human resources and finance, into one service delivery centre. Bringing these services and teams together will provide the foundation to deliver services to faculty, instructors and staff that are more consistent, simple, easy to access and better enabled through technology.

When fully implemented, the USC will become a one-stop-shop for all administrative services and needs

As part of this first step, two teams will join the USC as foundational members today – the Pension and Benefits Office in the Department of Human Resources, and the General Accounting team, including the Expense Desk, Accounts Payable and Accounts Receivable, in the Finance Department. At this time, these teams will continue to deliver their respective services as per normal, with existing processes and systems, and there will be no change to how services are accessed or requested. Shortly thereafter, the Procurement Operations team from the Finance Department will join the USC, anticipated for August to September 2021.

When fully implemented, the intention is for the USC to become a one-stop shop for all administrative services and needs. The benefits to the community will be twofold: York faculty, instructors and staff will enjoy the simplicity of a single point of contact to receive services; and USC employees, driven by a passion to help others, will benefit from meaningful and flexible career pathways and the opportunity to contribute to the development of a world-class service organization.

“In addition to more accessible and consistent services, the USC will also alleviate long-standing pain points in administrative service delivery, enabling the community to focus on what matters most – teaching, research and learning,” said Charles Frosst, associate vice-president, University Services Centre. “I am looking forward to working with the team to go to the next level of service performance.”

See a future rendering of the USC in the video below:

The concept of a shared services model is not new in the global university community. Many universities across Canada, the U.K. and Australia have also implemented similar models with substantial success. Canadian universities that have implemented or are currently undertaking similar programs to modernize delivery of administrative services include the University of Saskatchewan, the University of Alberta and the University of Ottawa.

At full maturity, York’s USC will be comprised of three expert teams – the Staff Contact Centre, the Services Hub and a Continuous Improvement Team. Each team will be staffed by experts in their area – whether that be responding to client inquiries, delivering specialist services such as benefits processing, accounts payable and receivables, or delivering process and customer experience enhancements.

In the future, the USC has plans to establish a modern, digital ticketing system to further streamline and optimize service delivery across the University and looks forward to future enhancements, such as help desks and automated services.

The design and implementation of the USC is part of the Service Excellence Program, a three-year initiative focused on improving processes, structures, systems and culture. Guided by York’s vision for service excellence, the program seeks to co-create solutions with the community that are user-focused and collaborative to make York University a better place to work and learn.

For more information, contact the Service Excellence Program.