Exeter College provides tertiary education for around 10,000 to 12,000 students and was judged as outstanding by Ofsted in a pilot “no notice” inspection in 2012, and again in a full inspection in 2014. The college was also awarded the Times Educational Supplement ‘Outstanding Provider of the Year in 2012 and BTEC College of the Year in 2014. Exeter College was established in 1970 as the first tertiary college in the UK, providing all post-16 education and training for the city of Exeter, bringing together the former grammar schools’ sixth forms and Exeter Technical College.
Barbara Sweeney, Clerk to the Corporation, Exeter College, comments: “There were two main drivers behind our engagement with MeetingSquared. At a recent annual appraisal, several of our board members, from both the private and public sectors, advised that whilst papers were reaching them in a timely fashion, it could be difficult to access them when working nationally or internationally. This meant they were often unable to review them until they returned to Exeter.
“In addition, if the board member was not at home when we posted the papers out, they might be sent back to the sorting office, which again would cause delays in them being reviewed. “With twenty plus packs being printed for governors and senior management, the printing and postage costs were also a huge concern. We estimated printing and postage costs were around £5,000 – £6,000 each year and by sending these ahead of a meeting, we were risking some of the data, particularly the financials, being out of date by the time the meeting came around.”
“We also found that some of the other e-solution providers we looked at did not fully meet our data protection requirements. We were recommended eShare by another college and quickly identified that meeting management solution addressed this issue head on. MeetingSquared is an easy to use meeting management app for iPad. The application allows users to access all meeting information, documents and agendas securely. Documents and meeting packs become interactive, allowing board members to make notes whilst on the move. This flexibility allows staff and governors to focus on meaningful activities such as the provision of excellent teaching.
“We were able to use our own SharePoint server to implement the on-premise solution. After just one hour’s training, I was able to set up the online papers and after initially trialling MeetingSquared with the audit committee, alongside having a hard copy of the meeting packs, we found none of the members actually used their hard copy, and really took to using the solution on their iPads. We have been exceptionally pleased with the response we’ve had from users.”
“Fundamentally, the ability to annotate documents has been crucial, enabling more effective and efficient decision-making,” concludes Sweeney.