Higher Education

What we do

Universities are reacting with determination and creativity to the new challenges they face. Budget deficits have mushroomed following sudden declines in endowment values, deep cuts in education funding and limits on tuition increases.

Competition in the global job market is making new programs, new training and new models of instruction essential in order for students to obtain gainful employment after graduation. And amidst a fluctuating student population, universities are harnessing new technologies, such as e-learning, as a way to reach even more students.

These pressures place core academic missions of teaching, research and outreach at risk. To help bring the focus back to schools' core missions, Bain is helping institutions get back on the path to success:

  • We are working to redesign the university model to make higher education a reality for more students across the US.
  • We closely examine school operations and organizations to determine which administrative support functions, and redundancies, are diverting scarce resources away from higher education's core purpose.
  • We are finding ways to rationalize traditionally decentralized and highly complex organization structures with widely disparate service levels and unworkable spans of control.

Contact us to discuss how we can help your organization.

Client examples
We share our clients' ambitions. We work to understand their reality and deliver true results—focusing on strategic decisions and practical actions. And we align our incentives with our clients’ objectives, so they know we’re in it together. The client stories below are just a few examples of how we've helped organizations realize, and often exceed, their goals.

University of North Carolina

Transformational cost reduction

Bain helped The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill identify more than $85 million in cost savings options (5 percent of operating budget) across a range of administrative functions. Read our final report on the university's site.

University of North Texas at Dallas

Changing the university model at UNT- Dallas and beyond

Bain recruited and participated in a commission of thought leaders to help transform the landscape of higher education—to make it more affordable and more accessible nationally. The strategy creates a high-quality education at a cost that is 20 percent of private universities and less than half the cost of an average public university.

Ivy League

Growth strategy enabled by streamlining costs

Bain launched a program for an Ivy League university, targeting more than $90 million in annual administrative cost savings. We also identified significant alternative revenue growth opportunities to help correct a budget deficit.