Creating Meaningful Connections at the SSC

The B&F strategic goals of being a great place to work and creating a “say yes” culture are at the heart of Making Blue Go, and we believe that investing in meaningful relationships is key to achieving these goals. At the Shared Services Center (SSC), we couldn’t do our work without strong relationships with our customers. As a result, we invest significant time outside of transaction processing to cultivate a healthy understanding of our customers and what they value.

What does this work look like? It’s a willingness to help people get from point A to point B however possible, even when we can’t directly solve the problem at hand. It’s an attitude that extends beyond one-on-one connections to encompass all interactions between our groups and teams. And sometimes it means listening to our toughest critics, being transparent in admitting when we have missed the mark, and being open to feedback on how to improve.

Here are just a few examples that highlight how we’re focusing on developing empathy and true relationships with our customers at the SSC.

SSC Bridge Cafe

The SSC Bridge Cafe connects groups across campus and SSC teams that regularly work together but rarely have an opportunity to meet face-to-face. One recent event brought together HR representatives from academic units across campus with the SSC J-1 Visa, Data Management and Employment Services teams. This one-hour interactive meeting features a creative opportunity to share “a day in the life” of each team. The opportunity to listen and learn about one another’s challenges and successes closes the understanding gap, and the time spent together builds patience, understanding and a sense of community.

SSC Pilot Program

The SSC Pilot Program builds collaboration by piloting new business processes or services in response to customer feedback. Under the Pilot Program, the SSC and a partner unit (such as a school or college) agree to test an extension of services using existing resources, working together to define the project scope and to develop new processes. The concept is then tested under live conditions and evaluated for feasibility in a broader roll-out. Current pilots are taking place in HR Data Management, Employment Services, Supplier Maintenance, Accounting Customer Service, Reconciliation and Travel & Expense.

Service Management & Quality Team

The members of the SSC Service Management & Quality (SMQ) Team dedicate all their efforts to listening, tracking and responding to the “pain points” our customers identify through face-to-face on-site meetings. They provide a direct line of communication between our teams and our customers, and gain a deep understanding of the real-time challenges facing our customers. Their work surfaces specific themes that we can address to improve the customer experience with the SSC.

. . . and more

Other relationship-building activities include tours, both at the SSC and at our customers’ work sites; user experience labs; and work groups that facilitate improving customer experience at the grassroots level. As a result of these efforts across our organization, paying attention and gathering feedback through multiple methods has become integrated in our day-to-day work. Through persistent engagement and a focus on the success of our customers, we listen and collaborate to find innovative solutions. The focus on relationships enables us to say yes to our customers and it also makes the SSC a great place to work. It’s an investment well worth making.

(From SSC Communications)