New Year’s Resolution: Zero Papercuts in the Workplace! Papercuts are not fun. They sting, they hurt, they are annoying. At the University of Wisconsin-Madison, the Office of Student Financial Aid (OSFA) takes papercuts very seriously and has been busy automating business processes and removing interactions with paper to ensure their team’s fingers are healthy and papercut free.
GT eForms has allowed OSFA the ability to transition numerous paper forms to an automated electronic form within SIS, which allows for the ability to store data within SIS, push the forms through a workflow, and automate/store the back-and-forth communications with students in SIS!
Below is a summary of the various forms they’ve built since they got their hands on GT eForms.
SAP Student Appeal
The SAP student appeal eForm went live in December and is being utilized with this year’s midterm SAP run. It replaced the PDF midterm appeal form that was previously in use. Note: The academic year version of this appeal eForm will roll out with UW’s advisor appeal eForm this coming June. The midterm appeal eForm allows students to appeal their academic plan failure and it includes sections for the student to explain their SAP difficulties and how they’re going to improve their performance moving forward; it also includes a special section where the student can include information on how COVID impacted their results, if applicable. In addition, the student can upload supporting documentation with their eForm submission.
Budget Adjustment Request
The budget adjustment eForm went live in September and replaced a Microsoft Word document that was previously in use. The eForm pulls in the student’s current budget, allows them to enter their additional expenses, and requests the student to upload supporting documentation with their eForm request. A SIS comment is automatically added to the student’s account when they submit their request and then when the request is approved or denied. This eForm is only visible in the Student Center when the student has no unmet need for the aid year. It can be submitted for the full academic year, fall term only, spring term only, and the summer term.
Moments That Matter
The Moments That Matter form is UW’s first internal form that is used amongst the OSFA team to capture interactions with students. They can capture information related to the topics discussed with the student, the time of the interaction, and also push comments from the form itself into SIS-Comments! Additionally, they are then able to query and analyze the data to continue meeting students’ needs. This form has been live since August of 2021.
Teacher Pledge Agreement
The Teacher Pledge Agreement was the first GT eForm created on campus! Students within an eligible program can take part in the Teacher Pledge Program, which offers financial support to future Wisconsin teachers, by taking the pledge via this form. Not only does this form capture information related to a student’s participation, but the form is also used to capture data not stored anywhere else in SIS, which would normally be a customization. This form has been live since August of 2020.
Emergency Support Request
The Emergency Support Request has been the most accessed and utilized form to date within OSFA. This form has been used to administer numerous rounds of Higher Education Emergency Relief Funding (HEERF). Additionally, on the operational side, the team can query data from one, centralized table within SIS. This allows for quick turnaround on data requests, as well as the ability to analyze and forecast requests. Once HEERF is complete, the form will remain, and additional functionality and workflow will be built to continue long-term automation. This form has been live since February of 2021.
There are situations where a student reports information on their FAFSA that conflicts with existing data in SIS. The Degree Discrepancy form is available for students to clarify information related to whether the student has an Undergraduate Degree. This form went live in January 2022.
Special Circumstances Request
There are times when the information on a FAFSA is outdated. Students can submit additional information for an OSFA team member to review, such as changes in income, dependency status, and changes to family. The OSFA team member reviews the request and can make a professional judgment related to the new information. This form has been live since December of 2021.
Credit Level Notification
Students have the ability to inform OSFA of their credit level for a particular term. Ultimately, this assists with the disbursement of financial aid to the student’s account in a timely manner. This form has been live since August of 2021.