How HACC, Central Pennsylvania’s Community College, Took Initiative with Project Management

Steve Pogue

HACC, Central Pennsylvania’s Community College, is the first and largest community college in Pennsylvania, serving more than 19,000 students. When the College’s Office of College Advancement was formed several years ago, the team realized that it was time to truly get organized and take ownership of their project management.

Faced with creating this new division, HACC leadership searched for a tool that would fit both their needs and budget.

When it came to selecting a tool, they had three requirements:

  • Easy to use for many users
    HACC was planning on having a lot of users accessing the system, so they knew anyone from designers to faculty members needed to learn the tool quickly.
  • Versatile in the types of projects they complete
    Their new system had to handle simple, small projects to large-scale, multi-faceted campaigns.
  • Accountability features
    Email reminders and to-do lists needed to be central to the tool.

“We’re a very email-heavy culture, so having those automatic email notices is helpful and attractive to us,” said Amanda Griesser, Integrated Marketing Communications Coordinator for Project Management.

The Choice: Workzone

HACC researched various tools and encountered a familiar problem: breadth of choice. But they narrowed down their choice to Workzone. “Workzone was really best suited to meet our needs and, quite frankly, it was more economical than the other options out there,” Amanda said.

Significant Changes

Amanda is familiar with how project management benefits a community college like HACC. She serves as the big-picture project manager to help things run smoothly from beginning to end – from the time that a project is submitted to its final completion. She has been able to run with some of the most used aspects in Workzone, including project templates. During the heaviest times of the year, upwards of 75 projects are active at one time, ranging from small brochures to multi-faceted campaigns.

“Templates have made a huge difference in terms of being able to set up projects quickly and efficiently,” Amanda said.

She appreciates the flexibility of the projects tab and lives in it. Between creating new projects or adjusting projects on the fly, she’s in and out of projects daily.

“The projects tab is great, because it is the most helpful in keeping everything moving as smoothly as possible.”

community college project management software

Satisfaction Made Easy

“Workzone is one of my best friends at work.”

Amanda enjoys her work at HACC and gets personal satisfaction from a job well done.

“I get a lot of satisfaction out of being able to complete tasks. When you can see that progress moving along and see that you’re staying on track, it’s just a good feeling,” Amanda said.

It helps that Workzone is easy to use, as one of HACC’s original goals was for their new system to be used by many people.

“Workzone is very easy to pick up from a user standpoint. It just makes sense. It’s a very clean layout, a very user-friendly site,” Amanda said.

Easy Onboarding and Training

Being a long-time customer of Workzone, HACC had established a relationship with one of Workzone’s first trainers, Lisa Heuerman.

“I got plenty of training from Lisa when I started. She was wonderful,” Amanda said. “Everyone throughout my time here has been very responsive and has been wonderful with answering any bizarre technical questions that we have. The customer service has always been really helpful.”

When Amanda isn’t leveraging Workzone’s support team to onboard a new employee or train a colleague, Amanda shares her excitement and positive attitude for project management. “We are such a project-heavy organization and there’s so much going on. It just feels really good to easily just check things off and see the progress that’s being made.”

“I’ve been on the other side where there has been no project management system whatsoever. And then I came to HACC and was introduced to Workzone, and I can never go back,” Amanda said.

Steve Pogue is the Marketing Operations Manager at Workzone. He writes about project management tips and the buying process. When not at Workzone, you can find him playing vintage base ball or relaxing with his family at home.