Benchmarking and Available Support

Benchmarking is a process of 'self evaluation' - of comparing your processes and your performance against good practice or benchmarks in similar organisations. The process helps you learn about new practices and develop confidence in your own best practices.  Benchmarking is also about 'seeing the bigger picture' and 'thinking outside the box' you normally inhabit. It is about engaging and motivating your colleagues to generate and act on new ideas.   Benchmarking results in improved networking and collaborative relationships, specific qualitative and/or quantitative information and better understanding or practices, performance or change management. Read more on Benchmarking in Higher Education.

Benchmarking Reports of Others

Click here for a list of Benchmarking activities and reports supported by the Quality Office.

How do you benchmark?

Here is a simple four step approach (i) Plan, (ii) Do, (iii) Check, (iv) Act

Plan - Appoint a project team and clarify the scope and objectives of the benchmarking exercise. Identify other universities or organisations to benchmark against.

Do - Carry out desk based research to collect data or preferrably visit the university or organisation. Visits allow your team to gather greater contextual information (highs and lows, pros and cons, obstacles and remedies) through formal and informal meetings.

Check - Identify best practice in your host universities that can be emulated in yoru own organisation.  Prioritise your list of possible ideas and actions based on cost, potential impact and potential risk.

Act - Prepare your action plan.  Integrate actions into your prioritised operational plan.  Delegate actions to colleagues to share the burden and meet regularly to discuss progress.

Financial Support

The Quality Office, offers €2,000 (max) towards benchmarking expenses - when funding is available.  Please seek prior approval via a simple email to the Quality Office briefly outlining your plans.  Once allocated, funds are available within the current financial year. The funding will be transferred to your Unit account when you provide a short Benchmarking Report outlining your results and documented expenses.