As you know, Dartmouth has been engaged for months in a campus-wide Strategic Budget Reduction and Investment effort. We are writing today to advise you on our progress and to outline what to expect in the weeks and months ahead.
We want to begin this message with a sincere thank you to the community. We are grateful not only for the wonderful work you do each day to make Dartmouth thrive, but for the extra tasks you have taken on and the outpouring of suggestions you have been giving to help with this intense effort.
We greatly appreciate the suggestions from across the Dartmouth community. To date, we have received and reviewed more than 1,300 suggestions, comments and questions and have assigned more than 70 percent to the budget project teams and Divisions/Schools (check out http://budget.dartmouth.edu/suggestions/ for a review of the status of all suggestions).
In brief, we are pleased to report that we have identified ways to close the gap of $50 million in FY11 (July 1, 2010-June 30, 2011), and to achieve 80 percent of the total target of $100 million we need to achieve by the end of FY12 (July 1, 2011-June 30, 2012). Additional expense reductions and new revenues will be required. However, many solid ideas and approaches for covering the remaining gap are already under evaluation or in development.
The following list provides examples of important measures that are already producing the savings that are necessary to close the gap:
Identifying the changes needed to close the gap, however, is only the start. We understand that implementing such changes often is the more difficult step of the process. The need to reduce our expenses remains urgent. Realizing many of these savings will require making important changes in the way we all do some of our administrative work, over a relatively short period of time. Our success will depend on your assistance and full participation in the coming weeks and months. We will need your support to help us modify our processes in the most sensible and efficient ways.
There are three aspects of the plan to close the gap that we would like to describe in more detail here. These are (1) Reductions in Force (RIF)/Reduction in Hours (RIH), (2) Benefits Changes, and (3) Administrative Restructuring Team (ART) Projects.
The savings goal for the ART projects is $25 million in FY12, which would reduce a significant portion of our overall $100 million gap. Concepts are being developed, and reviews by leaders are being scheduled, to help create implementation plans for these restructuring projects. We are focusing on making changes that ensure we can continue to do things well but also significantly reduce costs. To accomplish this, the way we conduct some of our core financial and administrative services necessarily will change, with the first of these changes to be announced over the next few months. Most of the other organizational changes and new service models will need to be in place by the end of this calendar year to achieve our savings.
In closing, we want to acknowledge both how far we as a community have come in such a short time toward resolving our budget gap – and also that there is much yet to do. In particular, we thank the Budget Committee, ART project teams, and the budget work teams in each division and school that have been working with such great care to identify savings, minimize hardships to individuals, and advance Dartmouth’s mission.
We also want to end this message as we began it, by thanking all of you for the many very helpful ideas and suggestions you have contributed to this process. The work you do every day and the care you bring to it is what makes Dartmouth an outstanding learning and living community.
Carol Folt, Acting Provost & Steven Kadish, Senior Vice President
Last Updated: 4/1/10