SBCA and Design Thinking: Forging the University of the Future

June 20, 2017

The best way to prepare for the future is through education. And the best way to have an education that is ready for the future is to ensure schools are built for tomorrow’s needs.

This reality was why San Beda College – Alabang (SBCA) wanted an ICT plan that would transform it into a “University of the Future”; to better-equip students in meeting the challenges of a rapidly-evolving world where the word “disruption” is a common term, and revolutions in doing things happen on a regular basis.

To meet this goal, SBCA approached the country’s largest Filipino-owned Digital Business Transformation provider for help. Pointwest responded by holding a Design Thinking Workshop on 1 June 2017 for SBCA. Displaying their commitment to the move, the SBCA Community attended full force, with the Rector-President, Directors, Deans, Professors, Administrative Officers, and Alumni President being present.

Pointwest also pulled out all the stops by sending a powerhouse team composed of no less than Chief Technology Officer Veck Basinang; Chief Information Security Officer Rene Canlas; Pointwest Labs Head Sherwin Pelayo; Digital Marketing Lead Mike Togle, and; Business Analysis CoE Lead Basil Tabilos to the Workshop.

“The key to a successful Design Thinking workshop is for all key stakeholders to agree on what their most challenging problem is and what is the best solution to address that problem.”Sherwin Pelayo, Pointwest Digital Capability Head

“This is why decision makers, software developers, and primary users are needed in the workshop because, otherwise, the solution will be unusable,” he added.

Establishing the Problem to Solve

Every solution to a problem begins with identifying the latter, and the Workshop gave the participants ample time and opportunities to discuss the many issues facing the school. Through various activities and exercises, it was discovered that the SBCA Community needed to be more collaborative. There was also a need for them to comply with processes to both be more efficient with their roles and tasks as well as to help minimize risks.

[image] SBCA Faculty ideating solutions

Most important of the discoveries during the Workshop conducted by Pointwest was the need to remain up-to-date with current and emerging digital trends. This was deemed a necessity  both for bettering education and adhering to current standards in industries SBCA trains its students to enter, and to bolster its stakeholders against “future-shock.”

Services and Solutions to Implement

The team from Pointwest illustrated to those present that addressing  the school’s needs require the setting up of new performance measurements, improvement of processes to make them more responsive, and developing new systems and platforms that encourage collaboration. Pointwest also noted that investing on the necessary infrastructure, as well as making important information more accessible to stakeholders, will be to SBCA’s advantage.

[Image] SBCA Stakeholders Discussing the Results of the session

After completing the Workshop, Pointwest’s team put together recommendations for SBCA on how to implement the results of the Design Thinking exercise. The team created a proposal that addresses the needs of SBCA in taking their ICT capabilities to the next level.

Mike Togle, one of the facilitators, mentioned that the workshop was able to help the participants reduce the possibility of making assumptions based on their own personal preferences.

“They were able to unearth challenges and problems experienced by all the departments and agreed amongst themselves which ones had to be prioritized in creating the problem statement.”Mike Togle, Digital Marketing Lead and Senior UX Designer

“Even if the outcome of the workshop wasn’t a complete ICT plan, the vital elements for the plan or what the school really needs to reach their objective were established during the Design Thinking workshop,” Togle added.


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