Tales From the Front I:
Beyond Customer Service: The Student Account's Solution Support Story

Lori Serna, Justin Vastine, John Buerger

Monday, May 24
8:00 AM – 9:00 AM HST
11:00 AM – 12:00 PM PDT
11:00 AM – 12:00 PM MST
12:00 PM – 1:00 PM MDT


Personal Development 

Program Knowledge: 

Session Description

Utilizing lean principles and a Learn by Doing philosophy, the Student Accounts Office at Cal Poly found a successful tension between honoring staff experience and being open to experimentation, and transformed how they provided services to students and campus partners. Over the course of two years (2017-2019), the office re-engineered processes, took risks in trying new practices, and prioritized small wins, all while capitalizing on relationships built with key student services partners. By tracking key metrics, they saw increased customer satisfaction, improved financial transparency, strengthened quality, and decreased service times and levels.

About the Speakers

 Lori Serna Photo

Lori Serna
Business Transformation Manager
California Polytechnic State University

Lori Serna is the Business Transformation Manager for the Administration & Finance Division at Cal Poly. Lori has spent the last 16 years implementing systems and processes with projects ranging from document management and workflow to campus-wide employee self-service. In 2016 she launched the Business Transformation Department, which provides her the opportunity to further drive A&F's Lean vision, collaborate with staff teams actively pursuing good change, and transform the way we provide service to our campus community. When she's not working on process improvement, she enjoys world travel, trail running, and research.

 Justin Vastine Photo

Justin Vastine
Director, Student Financial Services
California Polytechnic State University

Justin Vastine is the Director for Student Financial Services at Cal Poly. Justin began his career at Cal Poly overseeing the University Cashier's Office and then became Director in 2017 over both Student Accounts and the University Cashiers offices. As a change champion, Justin challenges the status quo and seeks to improve the transparency and options Cal Poly provides through its student financial services. Justin is newly married and enjoys spending time exploring the beautiful central coast of California on his dirt bike.

 John Buerger Photo

John Buerger
Solution Support Facilitator
California Polytechnic State University

John D. Buerger is the Solutions Support Facilitator for the Student Accounts Office at Cal Poly. John has led the solution support program from its very beginning in 2017, which includes: tiered support, student assistant teams and levels, communication strategies and methods, systems and process improvement. John has been blissfully married for 26 years, has two children through college and enjoys wine, gardening and playing soccer in his spare time.