Case Study: AACSB
The Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB) is an international organization with over 1,100 members in 70 countries. AACSB offers accreditation to business programs along with training and networking opportunities for business school educators. A key component of their services is their strong survey and benchmarking research.
The Challenge: Surveys and Benchmarking
AACSB runs 7-10 surveys a year. They have one of the biggest databases of business education benchmarking data in the world.
It's been a long time since surveying was a pen and paper proposition but it doesn't mean that moving surveys online has been an easy transition. When AACSB first put their surveys online, they hired outside web development consultants to put them up every year. The learning curve for the consultants was always steep. Staff were spending time delving into web technology instead of focusing on their core strength: research. These early forays into online surveys also had limited functionality compared to what's available now with Peerfocus.
AACSB made the decision to partner with Peerfocus. The Peerfocus web engine offered a number of benefits over the old system:
Association members love it:
- AACSB members can now create custom reports on the fly anytime, day or night. In the past, custom reports were available but were time-consuming and handled manually. If a member wants to compare themselves to six of their peers, they can get good data immediately, if they want to look at aspirational data, that's available too.
- Their members love the access controls. Each member can have an administrator and give various access rights to different staff, depending on the sensitivity of the data.
- Members find it intuitive and the data is cleaner: "We offer surveys for different countries but we need the data to be merged. Peerfocus allows us to do that. Dollars or pounds, the results are accurate. The way the surveys are built no longer allows our members to answer questions in the wrong section. This was always an issue before Peerfocus."
It's cost effective:
- Now AACSB can create surveys without having to hire an outside consultant, a huge time (and money) saver.
- Benchmarking calculations are handled by the software, not by hand, saving time and money and adding to increased accuracy of data.
- Staff has time to focus on research, not technology, leading to greater efficiency and cost savings.
- AACSB has the ability to charge members for premium access, allowing them to come out ahead financially.
Peerfocus offers excellent customer service:
"We've found Peerfocus to be extremely responsive. When we've had software recommendations like looping functions, they not only built our idea, but shared the innovation with all of their clients. And we benefit when other clients have new ideas too."
"They have really gotten to know our business, so the learning curve is minimal. We love that they know how we think and what's important to us!"
- Jessica Brown, Manager, Knowledge Services, AACSB