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Friday, January 18, 2013

Quality Review Identifies Program Strengths, Needed Actions

In December, the Enterprise Systems Upgrade Program (ESUP) team hosted CedarCrestone (CCI) quality manager Vickie Cleary for the first of several program quality reviews planned between now and December 2014. Her report identified a number of important program strengths and gave ESUP a “green” (positive) rating for Overall Project Status, Schedule, and Quality/Performance. The report also identified several challenges that, left unaddressed, could negatively impact the program going forward.

Program strengths (as summarized in the Executive Oversight Committee presentation below) include:
  • Outstanding Staff. ESUP is currently staffed with individuals who possess the subject matter expertise required to effectively and efficiently address the business and technical needs for the program. They are committed and passionate.
  • Remarkable Executive Support. Executive sponsorship is strong -- individuals have the support they require.
  • Pre-ESUP Activities That Strengthened the Program. Results from the activities that occurred at UMN prior to ESUP’s initiation have positively influenced the program. Activities and deliverables focused on business processes aided quick take-off.
Primary program weaknesses included:
  • Accessible Meeting Facilities. Convenient, available meeting space is scarce. Left unaddressed the situation could impact schedule. Action/Resolution: This issue is being addressed on an ongoing basis; ESUP meetings and sessions for January and February have been schedule in appropriate facilities.
  • Change Management Resource. A UMN Change Management leader needs to be secured and come up-to-speed quickly to meet the demand. Left unaddressed the scope could be impacted. Action/Resolution: Long-time UMN staff member Santiago Fernandez-Gimenez has been hired and began working in his new role this week.
  • Unmanaged Expectations. Individuals, to varying extents, are operating with different expectations about how the program, projects, and work streams will be managed. Action/Resolution: Program leaders are developing an action plan specifically to address this issue and other challenges identified by the quality review.
  • Technical Versus Administrative: History’s Impact. Negative aspects of previous UMN projects combined with an unspoken concern that the ESUP will be either technically or administratively focused rather than technically and administratively focused appears to be clouding ability to foresee success for the ESUP. Action/Resolution: Program leaders are developing an action plan specifically to address this issue and other challenges identified by the quality review.
The quality review consisted of a series of targeted interviews with selected ESUP team members, a more broadly distributed survey, analysis of the interviews and survey results, and a thorough review of program documentation to date. (If you were not contacted or surveyed as part of this first quality review, do not be concerned -- not everyone will be targeted for every review.) 

The next review is slated for the February/March timeframe and will focus on project initiation and planning for the Portal work stream as well as Phase 1: Plan & Discover for Student and HRMS. 

For more information:

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