In Part II of this series, I discussed various factors relating to the uses of business school operating funds for salary purposes. In this third part, I will talk about the non-salary expenditures by business schools. As a reminder, I have merged the numerous categories from the BSQ Finances Module as follows, for greater ease of display and analysis:
|Uses of Funds Categories in BSQ Finances Module||Analysis Categories for Uses of Funds|
|Degree Program Instructional Activity||Degree Program Instructional Activity|
|Total Benefits Compensation
Non-Degree Executive Education
|Other Faculty and Admin Activity|
|Student Services and Admissions
|Faculty/Staff Recruiting Expenditures
Figure 1. Mean Percentages of Total Uses of Operating Funds for Non-Salary Purposes, by School Size and Usage Category
Note: These data come from the 218 AACSB members who entered data regarding their uses of operating funds by type on the 2013-14 BSQ Finances Module. Small schools have 35 or fewer full-time faculty, Medium schools have 36-74, and Large schools have 75 or more.
As you can see, for each size category, non-salary expenditures tend to be much more evenly distributed among the various usage categories than salary expenditures. In particular, Degree Program Instructional Activity accounts for strong majorities of salary expenditures at all size categories, yet it averages only a third of all non-salary expenditures by small schools, and only a quarter by medium-sized and larger schools, on average. Non-salary expenditures in this category include things such as audio-visual services, ancillary support, and course and curriculum development.
Several usage categories also display interesting differences by the size category of the reporting school. On average, Student Support (and to a lesser degree, External-Facing Activity) account for progressively larger percentages of non-salary expenditures as the school’s faculty size category increases, which is just as they do for salary expenditures. This is a clear indication that larger schools require more resources for the purposes of recruiting students and faculty, as well as maintaining good relations with alumni and other external stakeholders, which makes intuitive sense.
However, there are a couple of usage categories that demonstrate more counterintuitive results by size category, e.g., Infrastructure and Other Faculty and Admin Activity. While no clear progression exists as it does for other usage categories, I found it both interesting and surprising that in both cases, larger schools spent less on average than their medium-sized counterparts, and in the case of Other Faculty and Admin Activity, less than the set of smaller schools as well. Quite the opposite is true in the case of salary expenditures in these areas, so it may be that school size is correlated with differing balances of salary vs. non-salary expenditures for these types of uses.
Figure 2. Mean Percentages of Total Uses of Operating Funds for Non-Salary Purposes, by AACSB Accreditation and Usage Category
As with size categories, when looking at AACSB accreditation status, we can see that the average proportions of non-salary expenditure types are much more evenly distributed than salary expenditure types, but there are still some categorical commonalities. Just as with salary uses, Degree Program Instructional Activity claims the largest portion of non-salary expenditures for both accredited and non-accredited respondents (though just barely in the case of accredited schools). Also as with salary expenditures, this category shows the largest average difference in usage of funds between accredited and non-accredited schools, though in this case the difference is even larger. Non-accredited schools spend 14.5 percent more of their non-salary expenditures on this category than accredited schools do, on average.
Unlike for salary uses, accreditation status seems to make relatively little difference to average non-salary expenditures in other defined usage categories. Although accredited schools still devote higher percentages of their resources to almost every category besides Degree Program Instructional Activity, none of the usage categories differ by more than 2-3 percent, on average, aside from the non-defined “Other” category.