College Track focuses on academics, student life, leadership, and both getting into and graduating from college. But meeting these commitments was becoming increasingly challenging due to a siloed Evaluation department, lack of clarity on roles and responsibilities across departments, an underdeveloped feedback loop on data collection and utilization, and the CEO often being unable to use data to inform key strategic and operational decisions.
College Track is committed to keeping the American dream alive by assisting students from underserved communities to graduate from college. Their program model is a 10-year promise to support students from ninth grade through college graduation, and in order to keep this promise, they needed to re-evaluate their teams and processes.
Underutilized data collection
Department reorganization and culture shift
To keep College Track on their own right track, Pivot got to work. We embedded ourselves with the organization for one year, taking on the role of Interim Vice President of Organizational Performance within their national leadership team. In fulfilling this role, we made data and performance management a central function to all departments. We assisted them in hiring, training and building a new team, including two analysts and a full time inaugural Vice President. Last but not least, we engaged with the national leadership team and senior leaders across the national network to align on making the necessary shifts in data collection and utilization to foster a culture of accountability.
Culture of learning, improvement, and accountability
We revitalized and enhanced College Track’s culture of learning. By rigorously looking at their work through the lens of constant improvement, they were able to better serve the students they worked with and improve internally. A new department of Organizational Performance was established, centralizing results, streamlining communication, emphasizing learning and maximizing staff and resources. In making data organization a focal point, College Track was able to streamline processes, improve collaboration across teams and gain greater clarity on their strategic priorities. All of these initiatives enabled a greater culture of accountability.
We wanted to shift our evaluation and impact work from being focused on programs to being a central hub for organizational performance. Andrew was instrumental in making this shift a reality. He embedded with us for a year. He built a new team from the ground up, worked across sites and departments, and pushed our thinking at the national leadership level. Plus… he makes the work fun!