General Consulting

Workflow Process Review

Financial aid processing can be cumbersome and, if not properly structured, it may result in delayed services to students and parents. When funds are delayed, students may not be able to attend an institution.

ECG can identify the root cause of processing delays—whether procedural, operational, or systems-related—design an improvement plan, and provide implementation assistance. By reviewing the overall lifecycle of a typical student file and tracking the milestone events, we can compare the school’s current workflow against industry standards and benchmarks. We will then recommend and assist with implementing system upgrades, training, or other services, as needed, to improve the quality and timeliness of financial aid services to students.

Systems Implementation

Deploying a new student information system (SIS) requires careful planning, and core knowledge about critical interfaces and processing requirements. A poorly planned implementation can be costly in both dollars and staff resources, greatly reducing the return on investment (ROI) for your school.

ECG has the expertise to help. We will assist with creating a business requirements document for the new system and outline all required planning activities to ensure a successful relationship between the school and the software vendor. We can also assist with developing a project charter that details tasks and task ownership to ensure accountability for the vendor, as  well as the users, in order to meet deliverables and milestones for the project. We will work with school officials to establish and maintain a budget monitoring system to ensure the proper level of senior management approval and controls. We will also develop recommendations to enhance the ability of your school to integrate your current SIS with other systems and services across offices and  divisions.

Regulatory Resource

Busy financial aid professionals often don’t have the time to research regulatory issues pertaining to day-to-day financial aid processing. And while  professional listservs and other forums can be a great resource, sometimes school staff may need to consult with an independent subject matter expert.

ECG can provide consultation and support, on an as-needed basis, covering regulatory issues. All of our consultants have hands-on experience in financial aid administration, averaging approximately 20 years. In addition, our senior staff includes policy experts with leadership experience at the U.S. Department  of Education and the National Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators (NASFAA).

Other General Services

From helping to update a school’s program participation to conducting a special file review, our staff provides customized solutions for all areas of the financial aid operations – just let us know what you need! Here are some examples of specialized services we have provided in the past:

  • Establishing or updating a school’s eligibility to participate in the federal student aid (FSA) programs
  • Reviewing staff compensation plans
  • Evaluating student information systems, third-party contracts, and other strategic business decisions
  • Conducting an independent file review based on a student dispute.