Strategic Performance Analysis: FAQ
What is a Strategic Performance Analysis?
An Strategic Performance Analysis is a comprehensive examination of every aspect of a school's operation, from school mission and management structure to budget and finances. It is a full-scale diagnosis of your school's health, providing immediate confirmation of what you are doing correctly and offering solutions to change your weaknesses to strengths.
How long does it take?
The number of days spent conducting a Strategic Performance Analysis varies depending upon the size of your school and its current situation. However, the analysis involves several days of assessing data which we request in advance of our visit to your campus, two or three days of on-site interviews, with an additional half-day devoted to presenting the Consultant's findings and recommendations.
When do I get the findings and recommendations?
The Consultant begins preparing the final report as soon as the interviews are finished and typically presents the findings and recommendations orally before returning to ISM. This oral report provides an opportunity for immediate clarification so the major decision-makers come out of the session with the same understanding. A written report is also provided for future reference.
Both the oral and written report typically cover:
- The current situation: patterns in recruitment, enrollment, and retention, as well as an overview of the parents and students served.
- Environmental pressures: our research on your competition, demographics, changes affecting private schools, image and name recognition, pricing, funding, financial aid.
- School strengths and weaknesses: student programs, space constraints, personnel, financial resources, management systems, recruiting materials, public and constituency relations
- Recommendations: your immediate, short-term, and long-term direction based on the items listed above, our management model, and the ISM Stability Markers™.
What are the benefits?
Your Consultant concentrates on areas of specific interest or concern to your school and makes recommendations based on the more than 30 years ISM has worked exclusively with private-independent schools. The Strategic Performance Analysis gives benchmarks so you can judge progress as you implement the recommendations.
How does our school prepare?
Once a Strategic Performance Analysis is confirmed, ISM sends a list of materials for the school to gather and return to us. Once we receive these materials, the Consultant begins to become immersed in your school—long before arriving on-site. By spending this time preparing for the visit, the Consultant already has a broad understanding of the issues and concerns the school is currently facing.
ISM also sends a list of individuals the Consultant needs to interview once on-site. We send detailed instructions about organizing the interview schedule and are available to answer any questions that may arise.
How much does it cost?
ISM's fee includes round trip transportation to the nearest major airport, the in-office preparation, the oral and written reports, and follow-up via phone, fax or email after the assessment. Our fee varies depending upon the Consultant providing the service, and the number of on-site days. Please call for the current fee schedule.
The school is also responsible for the Consultant's lodging, meals and local transportation (taxi, rental car, etc.) during the on-site visit.
How do I schedule a Strategic Performance Analysis?
To learn more about how our Consulting Services can serve your school, e-mail Helen Foster, Consulting Manager, or call
Due to the complexity of this service, we ask for as much advance notice as possible to schedule this consultation. Please keep in mind that our Consultants' calendars fill quickly several months in advance.