River Falls, Wisconsin, is a beautiful small town in the northwest part of the state, close to its border with Minnesota. It’s also the home of the University of Wisconsin – River Falls.
But don’t let the town’s population of just over 16,000 fool you or make you think the school maintains a leisurely, laid-back pace. The UWRF campus is vibrant and active, with a long list of classes, meetings, and events virtually every day of the year.
Just ask UWRF Business Analyst Deb Martin. Today, she’s an expert in data and the various systems used to manage it. But she also has extensive experience as a scheduling professional. So, she’s uniquely positioned to understand how Mazévo has empowered the University to manage its activity effectively and provide exceptional service to “customers” of all kinds— including students, faculty, the Registrar’s Office, and off-campus entities.
University of Wisconsin, River Falls
Recently, Deb shared observations and insights about UWRF’s scheduling operations with us.
From Academic Buildings to Outdoor Spaces
UWRF uses Mazévo to schedule activities in a wide variety of spaces. That includes the Falcon Center (a four-building complex), the University Center, 10 academic buildings, two Campus Laboratory Farms, an amphitheater, several outdoor classrooms, and what it calls the Mall.
In terms of meetings and events, those spaces were used for well over 20,000 gatherings in one recent year, including:
- 9,003 meetings
- 6,425 campus recreation bookings
- 5,235 athletics practices
- 446 conferences
- 203 vendor or information tables
- 176 performances
This includes events scheduled around academic classes, which get imported from UWRF’s student information system (SIS).
So, needless to say, UWRF requires a powerful scheduling solution. Just as importantly, they need a system that’s easy to learn and use. “MAZÉVO IS INTUITIVE,” Deb says. “And I want you to put that in capital letters and bold it!”
She notes that UWRF, like all colleges and universities, experiences regular turnover in its scheduling staff as student workers graduate. New employees’ ability to use Mazévo with little to no training is a huge benefit.
“Just a couple of months after the transition, people were super happy using Mazevo,” she adds. She goes on to stress that thoughtful features like how Mazévo handles customer access time and automatic door locking/unlocking are very helpful to UWRF’s schedulers and customers.
The transition Deb refers to was the move away from EMS after being long-time customers.
Hear what Deb loves about Mazévo
Vocal Mazévo Advocates After 2 Decades With EMS
Before switching to Mazévo, UWRF schedulers used EMS for nearly 20 years. And, for the most part, they were happy with it. Unfortunately, they felt like things “fell off the rails” with EMS in recent years. Changes to the system's web-based component, for example, actually made it harder for schedulers to use.
That type of backsliding was difficult for UWRF, as they take a lean approach to staffing and rely on their scheduling solutions (and other software systems) to do lots of “heavy lifting” for them. Even upgrading to EMS Campus didn’t help. And when customer service from EMS started to falter, it was time to move on to a modern, web-based scheduling solution.
Asked about how Mazévo compares to EMS, Deb pauses before exclaiming, “Oh, it just works so much better!”
EMS to Mazévo: A Switch That Has Made All the Difference
When asked about the most significant difference between getting by with EMS and now using Mazévo, Deb says the high user adoption of their new scheduling solution has been remarkable. And that’s coming from someone who’s been with the University a long time and been involved in several scheduling software transitions.
In particular, she explains that Mazévo’s intuitive interface and user-friendly features make it much easier for people to serve themselves—something everyone looks for in the systems they use these days.
And if you want an “in-the-trenches” perspective on the transition from users, Deb shares that three students currently working in the scheduling department used EMS before the switch and now rely on Mazévo. Their opinion? “They love it. They absolutely love it.”
UWRF University Center
A Fresh Perspective on Legacy Scheduling Processes
As Deb points out, UWRF schedulers are benefiting from two changes driven by the switch. The first, as noted above, is Mazévo’s features and functions.
But the scheduling team—and everyone who interacts with it—has also benefited from the department pausing before the switch and carefully considering how things were being done. The team could then assess whether certain processes could be modified or functionality implemented to make scheduling faster and easier for everyone involved. In many cases, the result was streamlined methods that save time and effort and prevent confusion and frustration.
“Couldn’t-Be-Better” Support From Mazévo
Asked about the support the Mazévo team provided during the switch and has continued to provide since, Deb describes it as, “Absolutely the best. Couldn’t be better. Top-notch.” She’s thrilled to have access to the assistance the scheduling team needs but wasn’t getting from EMS.
In fact, she pauses and adds that as someone involved with many types of software from many providers through the years, she feels that “Mazévo provides the best customer service of any of the software systems I’ve ever worked with.”
Deb’s “One” Favorite Mazévo Feature
Acknowledging that she isn’t always good at following the rules, Deb answers a question about the one thing she likes best about Mazévo with several. They include our support, the system’s “clean” interface, and Mazévo’s robust reporting capabilities.
She concludes by praising the speed with which our team designs and implements new features for Mazévo. Deb says if she were researching a software package and learned that the company had a continuous-improvement process centered around customer input as we do, that would definitely get her attention.
We can’t thank Deb enough for taking time out of her busy day to provide honest feedback about the University’s experience with Mazévo!