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Administrative expansion generates unnecessary expense

Yesterday, I wrote about how executive positions tend to morph over time. It’s one thing to talk about administrative expansion. It’s another thing to see it.

WCC Org Chart 2001

The first graphic shows the organizational chart at WCC as it appeared in 2001. It shows the President, an Executive Vice President, a Vice President and four Associate Vice Presidents. In addition, the chart shows the Chief Information Officer, eight deans, a couple of directors and a couple of administrative assistants.

WCC Org Chart 2020

The second graphic shows the organizational chart at WCC today, based on information drawn from public sources. It shows the President, two Executive Vice Presidents, four Vice Presidents, four Associate Vice Presidents, the General Counsel, seven deans, 43 directors and a Chief of Staff. This is administrative expansion in all its glory.

In the second chart, black boxes represent positions that existed in 2001. Blue represents positions elevated since 2001. Yellow represents positions downgraded since 2001 and green represents new positions. The bright blue box shows the number and type of directors WCC currently has on staff.

Honestly, I don’t know how many directors WCC had then, but directors hit the org chart in 2001. Today, they don’t.

The most disturbing thing on today’s chart is that the Vice President of Instruction is just that – a Vice President. In 2001, the only Executive Vice President at WCC was the EVP of Instruction. Today, the VPI is a mid-tier executive, and the EVPs are bureaucrats whose jobs do not directly tie into the College’s academic mission.

Unfortunately, the College is no better served by having EVPs in these positions than VPs or AVPs. This is a perfect example of pointless title inflation that costs the taxpayers dearly with no positive benefit to WCC.

Unrestrained administrative expansion must stop

The number of directors is simply horrifying. This is the result of unrestrained growth in the administration. This needs to stop, and the current administration has demonstrated that it is not capable of – or willing to – restrain itself in terms of hiring. The Board of Trustees needs to examine new hires far more closely, and insist that cuts include positions in the Executive Suite. Make no mistake about it: the cost of administrative expansion is enormous, and it absolutely must stop. Eliminating low-paid employees cannot begin to make up for the financial damage this unrestrained growth has inflicted on the College.

Perhaps the Board of Trustees should establish a firm, formal policy that restricts administrative growth to no more than the size of the professional, full-time faculty. If the administration wants to hire a new administrator, it will either need to eliminate an existing administrative position or increase the size of the full-time faculty. The Administration has shown extreme restraint in hiring more full-time faculty members over the past decade. It is now time for the Board to demand that the Administration to apply that same restraint to itself.

Photo Credit: fullcirclepiece, via Flickr