Hudson County Community College Helps Make Hudson Home with a Student-Centric Approach to Campus Services

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With a rich community of over 18,000 students, Hudson County Community College (HCCC) aims to provide inclusive programs and services that not only contribute to educational success, but also social and economic mobility. Located just across the Hudson River from Manhattan, HCCC operates three New Jersey campuses including the Journal Square Campus in Jersey City, the North Hudson Campus in Union City, and the Secaucus Center in Secaucus.

HCCC’s credit and non-credit programs provide students with pathways to sustainable degrees in today’s global society. With more than 70 degree and certificate programs including daytime, evening, and weekend classes, plus nine fully online programs, HCCC is committed to meeting students where they are in areas such as STEM, Nursing, Culinary Arts, Hospitality Management, and more. Close relationships with every major four-year college and university in the greater New Jersey-New York area allows HCCC to offer transfer pathways to students who want to further their education with a baccalaureate or higher degree.

At the core of HCCC’s mission is a student’s holistic needs. The College’s “Hudson Helps” Resource Center works collaboratively with area organizations and businesses to remove food and housing insecurity, emergency financial needs, wellness and childcare issues, and other roadblocks to college completion. The College’s students imagined their new tagline, “Hudson is Home.”

Finding the Right Fit for Today and Beyond

Higher education institutions are tasked with giving students the skills to overcome challenges with innovative solutions and strategic vision, but many are not using that mindset to overcome their own challenges; the team at HCCC is breaking that mold with Laserfiche. In the face of challenges working with legacy solutions, changing student needs post-pandemic, and ongoing regulatory changes, the HCCC team has worked collaboratively to solve existing issues while getting ahead of future challenges.

After their legacy ImageNow system, now Perceptive Content, failed to keep up with their community’s needs, HCCC needed a new solution for document management. HCCC was left extremely frustrated with the lack of support for the system, their solution provider, and the vendor and were unable to use the system to its full potential. Another local community college and Laserfiche Run Smarter Award Winner, Bergen Community College heard HCC’s issues and immediately suggested Laserfiche could be a solution to their pain points. Almost immediately after meeting with Bergen Community College’s solution provider Accelerated Information Systems (AIS), the HCCC team was ready to bring their vision for the campus to life with Laserfiche.

Intuitive document and process management are vital to staff and student services across any campus but knowing where to start can be a challenge. HCCC quickly identified Financial Aid and Enrollment as perfect places to start with Laserfiche due to the importance of Colleague and the easy integration options available. HCCC’s Colleague-integrated Laserfiche system immediately cut manual processing previously spent on copying and pasting information. Even more importantly, having a fully integrated and automated approach to these departments helped facilitate remote student services and staff work during the COVID-19 pandemic. Instead of needing access to multiple systems and paper-based records, students and staff could complete enrollment and financial service processes online.

“I’ve worked with a small handful of the many document management systems, but it’s all about the execution. We got set up quickly and were able to add on functionality immediately and that never happens.”
Trisha Clay Round

Trisha Clay
Associate VP & CIO
Hudson County Community College

One of the strategic goals for HCCC was to become a New Jersey Imaging Registered which means they would no longer need to keep paper copies of documents. With their previous ImageNow solution, HCCC was unable to get the necessary information from their solution provider to complete the certification, leaving the project at a standstill. Once working with Laserfiche and the AIS team, HCCC was quickly able to start the project and is in the final stages and look forward to the freed space and resources previously wasted on paper documents.

Another obstacle HCCC was able to overcome was their approach to COVID-19 vaccination records. Without Laserfiche, HCCC did not have a cohesive way to collect and track proof, which meant hours of manual processing. Now, staff and students have access to a Laserfiche Form where they can upload their vaccination cards from any device. From the form, Laserfiche places the uploaded proof in a file that only the Human Resources Department (HR) can access, with options to search these records in Colleague. Beyond the simplicity for staff and students, HR department staff were trained on this completely new process in only two weeks saving even more time and resources.

Zaheer Master - President, AIS

Zaheer Master
Accelerated Information Systems

“Incorporating technology in the right way is challenging for many institutions, but Hudson’s student-first approach has been at the core of their success. We’re proud to work with such a visionary institution toward their mission of making life easier for students and across campus.”

Building the Future of Student-Centric Services

Looking forward, HCCC plans on continuing to use Laserfiche to overcome more obstacles. The team plans to continue rolling out Laserfiche to more departments and embark on more automation processes. Currently, many of their forms are hosted in different locations, from their website to a SharePoint site that will be decommissioned soon. Having multiple locations for forms has been confusing, and by expanding their use of Laserfiche Forms, they can host all their forms in one place regardless of data sensitivity. Integration and automation capabilities will also allow the form to auto-populate student data for further simplicity.

Additionally, Trisha Clay, associate VP and CIO at HCCC and winner of the 2023 Laserfiche Nien-Ling Wacker Visionary Award, hopes to spread the importance of Laserfiche beyond their campus. As co-chair of EDUCAUSE’s Higher Education Information Security Council (HEISC), Trisha is key to developing resources and events for the higher education security, cybersecurity, and privacy communities. Trisha is an advocate for the Higher Education Community Vendor Assessment Toolkit (HECVAT) questionnaire to help colleges and universities assess vendor risk. Trisha’s dedication to improving information security, governance, and compliance carries over from her HEISC work to her vision and leadership of the HCCC team.

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    About Accelerated Information Systems

    Accelerated Information Systems (AIS) is an award-winning professional services firm focused on solving business challenges with software solutions. AIS provides expert guidance, utilizing industry expertise and a strong technical skill set to design, implement, and support enterprise solutions.

    AIS provides a full suite of professional services including consulting, solution design, implementation, technical support, data conversion, system integration, training, and project management.

    Clients of AIS include State and Local Government, Colleges and Universities, Financial Services (Wealth Management, Investment Advisors, Broker-Dealers), Manufacturers, Not-for-Profit Organizations, TV and Media, and Multi-National Non-Governmental Organizations.

    Founded in 2005, AIS is headquartered in New York and is also certified in multiple other states as a Minority Business Enterprise (MBE) and a Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE). In addition to their status as a Platinum Certified Laserfiche Solution Provider and the 2019 Laserfiche Cloud Solution Provider of the Year, AIS is a Microsoft Cloud Silver Certified Partner.