Embedding a culture of evidence through storytelling
“Telling our story connotes explaining the work we do, and the specific differences it makes in ways that people who aren’t us can understand and remember. We describe, record, measure, and document our experiences—to show what we did and accomplished.... and what we still need to do.” (Keeling, 2008) Storytelling captures the work we are undertaking and is a powerful tool in demonstrating its relevance and in influencing strategic decisions. Historically our anchor points for reporting were data driven and measured engagement. Building on a process that began in 2008, we now proactively demonstrate transparency, return on investment, measures of impact and continuous improvement. Through our Reporting and Storytelling practices our role is identified and understood by those we report to, support or influence.
Demonstrated benefit to tertiary students, graduate employers and/or tertiary institutions
For students The most significant advantages to students have been achieved this year. Curtin's Support Services implement a model of student engagement modified from the International Association for Public Participation (IAP2) spectrum www.iap2.org. By implementing the four components of reporting – Needs, Utilisation, Satisfaction and Impact - we have a working framework that allows us to achieve the highest levels of engagement. Initially we have: • Developed a student focused ‘Score Card Report’ available to all students (please contact Chris Ruffler for outline). • Commenced delivery of services and programs identified by students as meeting their needs in formats they prefer. • Been able to clearly identify and explain SSAF expenditure in a means that that meets the need of our Guild (where funding of SSAF resides). • Given students possession of all four levels of data collection and commenced a partnership in service and program delivery. For employers Our Culture of Evidence exists in a complementary mode for employer partners allowing the Centre to provide detailed metrics on impact of their collaborations with us physically on campus or via our digital channels.
Potentially or currently benefits the NAGCAS organisation, its members and the career development industry
At a minimum, sharing of evidence based practice may lead to some productive conversations around effective and strategic communication strategies around the value of our work, and that would be healthy for the profession. More specifically Curtin is keen, and believes has demonstrated, a willingness to share all aspects of how we are building our Culture of Evidence. This is partly altruistic as we believe the more data and research NAGCAS can share and promote, the more powerful our combined and individual voices will be. • All CareerHub forms and work-flows have been and are shareable. • Copies of the Annual Report are available (please contact Chris Ruffler for copies) • We are participating in regular NAGCAS meetings to share ideas with colleagues. • Research and data collection was a focus of the IR Symposium.
A degree of innovation
The four biggest innovations are 1. Our approach. This project was not about writing a report but establishing a Culture of Evidence within the Centre. 2. Being able to quote Paul Keeting: 'a beautiful set of numbers'. We are to delivering reports that 'don't look like reports or strategic directions' with different voices for different audiences e.g. Darshil's Digest (please contact Chris Ruffler for copies). 3. Reshaping and re-skilling our team to realise our goals. Restructuring to include non-typical ‘Careers Centre’ positions such as Actuarial Scientist and then placing this person into a matrix reporting line across the university e.g. one day a week in our Analytics team and 1/2 day in our Strategy and Planning team (working on BI tool). 4. Data/evidence is not secret. The aim is to establish collaboration within and across universities to establish national matrixes for reporting on the development of career, employability and leadership skills.