The four campuses of the University of Missouri system have generated $80.86 million in savings through efficiencies and increased effectiveness in fiscal year 2012, according to a press release from the UM system.
These cost savings and revenue enhancements can be used for core mission areas and strategic priorities, helping to keep the cost of education affordable and a college degree attainable for Missourians.
Since 2009, the university system’s cumulative savings and revenue enhancements have totaled $411.7 million.
“We have long considered ourselves good stewards of state resources, and our ability to identify continued cost savings and revenue enhancements year over year is something we are very proud of,” said UM system President Tim Wolfe.
“Not only does it demonstrate our commitment to utilize well the resources that are invested in us, but it also shows our continued effort to rethink normal business processes, seek new revenue streams and continually think about how to deliver our mission in the most effective and efficient ways,” the president said.
“At the same time,” Wolfe continued, “these cost savings often represent difficult choices and tradeoffs for our university and challenge our employees. We recognize that it is our new normal to do more with less.”
Of the nearly $60 million in savings realized through cost reductions and cost management activities, Wolfe said the largest amount — $23 million — came from deferral of maintenance and repair, bringing the university’s total backlog in this category to more than $1 billion.
More than $16 million in savings was the result of competitive contracting and other procurement activities, and nearly $9 million was in workforce reductions. Other cost management activities include elimination or consolidation of academic programs, energy conservation, strategic partnerships with external entities and technology initiatives.
At the same time, more than $21 million in revenue enhancements was realized in fiscal year 2012, mostly the result of net tuition and fees due to enrollment growth and management, entrepreneurial activities, grants and sales of surplus property.
Wolfe said these cost savings and revenue enhancements are all the more impressive given the university’s significant increases in enrollment. Overall student headcount at the four campuses increased by 23 percent — or 14,141 students — from fall 2002 to fall 2012, accounting for 70 percent of the growth in full-time equivalent students at the state’s 13 four-year public institutions.
“As in past years, we will continue to look for ways to be more efficient in our processes and effective in the meeting of our mission of teaching, research, service and economic development,” Wolfe said. “We expect some of these efficiencies will come about through our strategic planning efforts in the coming year.”