Our Solutions

"Traditional universities need to reform themselves to meet economic, competitive, technological, and political challenges of the twenty-first century, and this needs to be done in a way that preserves their most precious assets and sustains their essential values." - Professor William F. Massy

Universities internationally are currently facing attacks on multiple fronts. Reduction in Government funding, increasing competition from new technologies, even students questioning the very value of higher education. At the same time the gap between the rich and the poor is widening and while education can be the great equalizer, that education must be high quality, institutions need to ensure a large percentage of students graduate and tuition must be affordable.

Both the demand for Higher Education and the number of jobs that require a university degree are growing with current forecasts predicting a large shortfall between graduates and jobs.

Our objective is to provide Universities and Colleges with the tools and data to not only survive but to thrive in this new environment. It’s time to Empower Higher Education!

Technology provided by: Microsoft, Dell and Pilbara Group's ACE on-Demand.

Books, White Papers and News

The State of Higher Education in 2017 – Grant Thornton LLP

Experience-based approaches for seizing opportunities and addressing challenges Grant Thornton’s sixth annual State of Higher Education report covers current higher education topics: the use of data analytics; ways in which to redefine business models; recommendations for pragmatic enterprise risk management; planning for changes in federal regulations in endowments and accessibility; the transformation of the campus […]

Reengineering the University

How to Be Mission Centered, Market Smart, and Margin Conscious William F. Massy Higher education expert William F. Massy’s decades as a professor, senior university officer, and consultant have left him with a passionate belief in the need for reform in America’s traditional universities. InReengineering the University, he addresses widespread concerns that higher education’s costs […]

Course-Level Activity-Based Costing as an Academic and Financial Tool

William F. Massy, Stanford University Delivery of quality education in a budget-constrained environment requires that academic and financial decision-makers understand the activities, costs and margins associated with teaching at the course level. Working in partnership, the provost and CFO at the University of California – Riverside (UCR) have implemented an “enhanced Activity-Based Costing (ABC) tool” […]

Big Data Begging for use by Decision-Makers

William Massy’s book Reengineering the University is not for the faint-hearted. After decades on the frontline of university decision-making and finances, he is convinced there is much more that can be done to develop evidence-based and transparent processes – such as using the available data that university departments routinely have at their disposal to plan […]

Evolving Higher Education Business Models

  Anyone concerned about how colleges and universities can remain viable, and indeed thrive, in the face of today’s many challenges should read this paper carefully. The ideas are profound and the recommendations are potential game-changers that challenge the conventional wisdom. They will help institutions transform themselves—in ways appropriate to twenty-first-century values, market conditions, and technology—to become better and more […]

Cost Structure of Post-Secondary Education

Guide to Making Activity-Based Costing Meaningful and Practical Maria Anguiano, Senior Advisor Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation: Post-Secondary Education Success The higher education industry and its observers have wrung hands over rising costs for years. While there are many reasons for escalating costs, there is at least one that higher education leadership has complete control over and […]

 Higher Education Clients


University of California – Riverside

New York Institute of Technology

Johnson County Community College

Australian National University

University of Sydney

Edith Cowan University

Deakin University

University of Wollongong

Swinburne University of Technology

Western Sydney University

James Cook University

University of Tasmania

RMIT University

Charles Sturt University

About Us

We are dedicated to helping universities and colleges measure the cost-effectiveness and quality of teaching and research. We started as a consulting firm back in 1999 providing cost and predictive modeling solutions to the Australian military and US military. We have also provided costing solutions to various industries including oil/gas, financial services, federal government and gaming. We are now focused on higher education because we believe in the importance of cost effective and high quality education.

Leadership Team and Higher Education Advisers

LeaMr. Lea Patterson

“I believe everyone should have access to affordable, high quality higher education regardless of geography, social or economic status.”

Lea Patterson is an electronics and computer engineer. Lea is passionate about empowering universities and colleges to ensure high quality teaching and research are delivered in the most cost effective way.

- President / CEO

MikeMr. Michael Skopal

Michael has been with the company since its inception.  Michael is instrumental in spreading the word about all of the great work undertaken by Pilbara Group both in Australia and internationally.

- Business Development Manager

AndrewMr. Andrew Faulkner

Andrew is our chief software architect and designer of the ACE modeling application. Andrew also developed the methodology for both the Historical University Management Model and the University Predictive Model and has extensive experience implementing both solutions. Andrew is also responsible for driving the benchmarking analysis for university clients.

- Senior Software Architect / Consulting Manager

MichelleMs. Michelle Brooke

Michelle has spent over 15 years building, implementing and reviewing cost models for a range of clients both here in Australia and in the Unites States.  Her client list includes Royal Australian Navy, US Navy, Medicare Australia, Australian Customs Service, NSW Health, QLD Health, and is now responsible for managing all the University implementations and updates.

- Senior Manager

Mike GMr. Michael Gerding

Michael has a degree in Accounting and also designated as a Certified Internal Auditor. Michael is responsible for managing Pilbara Group’s US business and supporting the US clients. Michael has extensive experience with large-scale cost modeling implementation being directly involved with a number of enterprise implementations for the US Navy.

- US Senior Manager

Bill MassyProfessor William Massy

Professor Emeritus of Education and Business Administration, Stanford University.  Formerly Vice-President for Business and Finance and Vice-Provost, Research at Stanford University, Professor Massy holds a PhD in economics and MS in management from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and a BS from Yale University. Professor Massy’s contributions to higher education are well known. His publications: Planning Models for Colleges and UniversitiesResource Allocation in Higher EducationHonoring the Trust: Quality and Cost Containment in Higher Education, and Academic Quality Work: A Handbook for Improvement, have become standards in their respective fields. His latest book Reengineering the University: How to Be Mission Centered, Market Smart, and Margin Conscious will be forthcoming from the Johns Hopkins University Press, February 2016.

- Higher Education Adviser

LeoProfessor Leo Goedegebuure

Director at the LH Martin Institute, Professor Leo Goedegebuure is active in the field of higher education policy research and management. Prior to his move to Australia in 2005 (University of New England, Centre for Higher Education Management and Policy), Leo was Executive Director of the Center for Higher Education Policy Studies (CHEPS), at the University of Twente, Netherlands, Europe’s largest research centre in this field.

- Higher Education Adviser

alanProfessor Alan Pettigrew BSc (Hons) PhD FAICD

Professor Pettigrew has held senior academic and executive appointments at the Universities of Sydney, Queensland, and New South Wales. He was Vice-Chancellor and CEO of the University of New England from 2006 to 2009. From 2001 to 2005 Professor Pettigrew was the inaugural CEO of the National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) of Australia.

Professor Pettigrew has served on many Australian Government and other committees, including an Advisory Committee for the Australian Law Reform Commission (2003 – 2004) and the Board of the Australian Universities Quality Agency (AUQA) Ltd (2006 – 2010).

Professor Pettigrew is currently a Professorial Fellow of the L.H. Martin Institute at the University of Melbourne. He is a member of the Council of the QIMRBerghofer Medical Research Institute and is Chair of the Board of the Illawarra Health and Medical Research Institute. He is also Chair of the Board of the Western Australian Data Linkage Infrastructure Project. Professor Pettigrew has served as a consultant on international higher education and research training projects supported by the World Bank, the OECD and the Swedish International Development Agency.

- Higher Education Adviser