Operational priorities

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Reflections on priorities

Priorities determine what actually has to happen first. What are the "must do" activities, which if not done will stall the whole OERu initiative.

Strategic planning at the OERu is a dynamic, iterative and complex process. The OERu is an open collaboration involving over thirty partners from five continents and many of the planning activities rely on volunteer contributions from the community. We also need to consider perspective and focus. OER partners join the collaboration for a variety of different reasons. What is considered important for one member may not carry the same level of importance or interest for another partner in the network. The different stakeholder groups within the planning process also have different interests and priorities. For example, course designers and developers at our partner institutions will be concerned with how to assemble an OERu course and plan for assessment, whereas senior leadership will be more interested in the return on investment from OERu activities.

The network has identified a number of operational priorities for 2014 which are conducted in parallel with the overall strategic planning process. For the purposes of the OERu four-year planning horizon, as a general guideline, activities which can be completed within the short term (for example less than a year) are considered operational. A few notes about our planning terminology:

  • A strategic goal is something we would like to achieve in the longer term recognising that goals can be completed within the current strategic plan or extend beyond the current planning horizon.
  • Strategic objectives contribute to the achievement of the strategic goal and will include operational priorities. Strategic objectives may require one or more short term activities to achieve the objective.
  • A priority is something that is important to do now. It follows that a strategic objective may have a higher priority than the corresponding ranking of the overall strategic goal.

Operational priorities by year

As an evergreen strategic plan, the OERu determines operational priorities each year and calibrates KPIs as new information comes to light.