Kaplan Professional: Straight Talk About Digitizing Processes

It’s not every day we get to capture a spontaneous interview with one of our customers. Luckily, Sarah Dohnalik, Director of Operations and Value Stream Management at Kaplan Professional, was more than happy to hop on stage at the 7 Rivers Lean Symposium and share her experience implementing TrackVia.

Before TrackVia, Kaplan Professional’s Value Stream Team relied on manual processes to manage their educational material development and production lifecycle. In this video, Sarah details how TrackVia transformed Kaplan’s data collection and production workflows, how employees responded to the new system, and how it allowed her to focus more on her team.

Watch the full interview above or read our favorite highlights below.

Q: Before TrackVia, what problems existed as a result of disparate data?

Sarah explains that before TrackVia, she was unable to provide critical timelines to leadership. When her CEO or CFO would ask how long it took to complete a project, she didn’t have an answer, and it would take a long time to collect that information.

“It probably [took] me about 20, 30 hours to try and get that data pulled together. Because some of the data points were in a spreadsheet, we tracked our times in another system…We had no real data to present.”

Q: What did your employees think of the old processes before TrackVia?

Sarah shared that her team relied on data from multiple systems to get their work done. The manual processes created a difficult work environment for employees.

“The other key thing for our employees is, they were getting frustrated. They’re sick of having to go to multiple systems to gather the data they need to do their day-to-day work. It’s not efficient.”

Q: How did employees respond to automating processes with TrackVia?

From the start, Sarah and her team made sure to involve employees at every step of the process. Sarah wanted the people who do work every day to play a key role in designing their system, and she’s happy with the results. She reports the employees felt empowered to help make decisions to make their jobs better.

“The [employees] who are already integrated have become our cheerleaders. They’re like, “Oh my gosh, I just found this out today in TrackVia and it was so awesome you guys! This is fantastic! You’ve got to look this up in the system. It’s so cool!”

Q: What do you like about using TrackVia?

Sarah also explains that with TrackVia, she’s gained efficiencies both in her job and as a manager. It’s given her more of an opportunity to be a leader and focus on what her team wants. She points out that if you’re spending so much time trying to capture data and identify operational problems, you’re not doing what your company hired you to do, and you’re not doing what’s best for your employees. Using TrackVia has significantly changed Kaplan’s day-to-day processes.

“To be able to just pull that information right away and start measuring instantly where we’re performing at any time is huge for us… you have one source; you know exactly what you need to do your job.”

Q: Why did Kaplan choose TrackVia over other systems?

Sarah explains that there are other software systems out there that can build process management applications and Kaplan evaluated 10 different platforms. They chose TrackVia because it’s easy to use. In fact, Sarah’s administrator for the software platform was one of her value stream managers. Despite having no computer experience, he picked up the system quickly and is able to administer it successfully.

“One of the main selling points for TrackVia is it’s low-code. What does that mean? That means you don’t have to be a developer to set this up and get this working for your company.”

Interested in learning more about Kaplan Professional’s partnership with TrackVia?

Check out our case study about how they sped up on-time delivery of their products and reduced costs by consolidating systems and making processes easier.

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