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Monday, March 25, 2013

Weekly Update for the week of March 25, 2013

New Faces in ESUP
There will be some new faces on the ESUP team in the coming weeks. ESUP would like to extend a warm Minnesota welcome to the following new team members:

  • Cynthia Murdoch, lead business analyst on the Portal work stream
  • Staci Ludwig, developer and analyst on the Portal work stream
  • Mike Murphy (CCI), co-project director on the Finance work stream

HRMS Welcomes IDPs and Oracle Software
The HRMS work stream was busy last week with the start of their Interactive Design and Prototyping (IDP) sessions. The week ended on a high note with the release of Oracle 9.2. The release of this version had previously been delayed; now HRMS can move forward with 9.2 implementation as planned. The work stream hopes to receive a 9.2 database in June that can be used in IDP sessions.

For more information on IDPs, check out the “What is an IDP?” post.

Quick Hits and Reminders From Across the Work Streams

  • The Portal work stream continues to host Design Thinking workshops around the state. The next workshop is scheduled for this Thursday (3/28) on the Duluth campus from 10 a.m. - 2 p.m. in the Kirby Student Center, room 310 [http://www.eventbrite.com/event/5542999260].
  • Reporting and Data Management plans to complete work on the BI Roadmap this week. The information will be presented to the EDMR Steering Committee for their review, input, and direction. 

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As ESUP progresses, you can expect more information to be shared more frequently on the ESUP blog. Get every post delivered to your inbox by entering your email address in the Subscribe by Email window at upgrade.umn.edu and following the instructions. Once your subscription is activated, you will receive an email alerting you to new ESUP posts late in the afternoon the day they are published. If there is no post, you receive no email -- simple as that!

Monday, March 18, 2013

Weekly Update for the Week of March 18, 2013

Oracle to release key software

ESUP Program Director Andy Hill announced on Monday, Oracle has confirmed at the Alliance Conference that the Human Capital Management (HCM) and Finance 9.2 software will finally be released.  This software release had originally been scheduled for December 2012, and the delay was seen as a potential risk for ESUP. Now the program will be able to proceed with the solid target of implementing these two modules. The HCM software is seen as a significant improvement, especially in terms of usability.

ESUP will move forward as quickly as possible to adopt the 9.2 environment in redesigning HR business processes. The Finance work stream's later start date works out extremely well with the timing of this software release. This is great news, as these products are critical to ESUP’s technical strategy and timeline. 

Design Thinking Workshops Begin to
Shape the Vision of Portal

ESUP's Portal project has forged a partnership with the College of Design. By taking advantage of the College’s cutting edge design practices, Portal is demonstrating how ESUP can engage with University academic resources to produce excellent outcomes.

So far 75 people from the Morris and Twin Cities campuses have attended one of the system-wide Design Thinking@College of Design workshops, creating 15 prototypes that explore specific features users want from the portal. The responses so far show appreciation for an open and inclusive process. After each workshop, attendees receive a survey as an additional opportunity to provide feedback. The current survey completion rate is over 70%!

More information, including pictures and videos of the prototypes built so far, can be found on the Portal website.   Click on the Design Thinking Workshop tab.
Upcoming Design Thinking workshops (more workshop dates available online):

Best practice guidelines for analyzing gaps

CedarCrestone has developed a set of best practices to help guide the scope of issues addressed during Interactive Design and Prototyping (IDP) sessions. These guidelines are designed to help IDP participants focus on large and meaningful business process design issues. The following relatively small customizations have downstream impacts that increase maintenance costs, but they may not deliver sufficient business value to merit attention during IDP :

  • Field Edits -- (validates the content or format of a field value)
  • Field Defaults  -- (pre populates a value in a field)
  • Field Location -- (where a field appears on the page)
  • Labels -- (names a field on the page)
  • Tab Order -- (the order that the tab button moves the cursor through fields or links on a page)
  • Search settings -- (search parameters such as “include history”)

While there may be exceptions to this practice, most of these items will be left as delivered by PeopleSoft. This should help IDP teams to move forward and focus on larger and more meaningful business process redesign issues.

OHR Explores Vision, Strategy for Portal Implementation

More than 20 members of the Office of Human Resources (OHR), the Portal work stream, University Services, the College of Liberal Arts on the Twin Cities campus, and University of Minnesota Duluth met last Wednesday to begin to develop a vision and implementation strategy for dynamic new human resources content and functionality, which will emerge over the next few years with the implementation of the PeopleSoft Enterprise Portal as part of ESUP.

The half-day session, led by Vice President Kathy Brown, Director of HR Operations Lori Lamb, and the retreat facilitator, Sue Gebelein, included brainstorming of short- and long-term goals for HR content and functionality in the portal, as well as a discussion of the foundational work and leadership required to prepare OHR staff, processes, and content for a new portal environment.

“It was a great day,” Lamb said. “It’s exciting to see the great potential of a new HR portal to really transform the way faculty and staff interact with the University and to convey our employment brand. At the same time, I think everyone agreed that the success of ESUP overall will determine how transformational the HR portal can be. What we do between now and 2014 to upgrade technology, streamline business processes, and improve HR data, reporting, and content will determine how much of our dream portal can be realized.”

Campus Schedules Diverge

Next Friday Morris, Rochester, and Twin Cities will be closed, but Duluth and Crookston are open. Please double-check your schedule to see if you have ESUP-related meetings on this date.

Quick Hits and Reminders From Across the Work Streams

  • The Finance work stream continues to plan for its project kickoff in May. The Functional Steering Committee and the business process owners spent time discussing the list of financial business processes. This resulted in identifying each business process as 'customer facing' or 'central facing' to plan who will need to be involved for each session. The project team is scheduling the Finance work stream Phase 1: Plan & Discover meetings for May through August.
  • The Student work stream: Due to the holiday closure of three campuses on March 22, the Student Records team will not hold a Town Hall meeting that day. The next Student Records Town Hall will be held April 12. More information about Town Hall meetings can be found on the Student Records Stakeholder Engagement page.
  • The Technology work stream:  Developers continue to attend and assist in work stream IDP sessions as needed.
  • The Portal work stream is out and about talking to people about the future of portal, answering questions, and getting great input to help shape this technology. Recently, Portal has met with University Relations, the Senate Committee on Information Technology, and the Faculty Consultative Committee, just to name a few. Click here to provide your feedback and/or arrange for a meeting with your department or college.
  • The Reporting and Data Management work stream:    Information gathering sessions for the BI Roadmap effort concluded this past week.  Interviews and discovery sessions were conducted across the University, meeting with over 150 people. Interview representation included:  University Analysts, Analytics Collaborative, Data Governance Team, distributed developer communities, Office of Institutional Research, members from the System Campuses, Financial Report Working Group, RRC Managers, Collegiate Chief of Staffs, representation from central functional groups (HR, Student, Finance), University units with existing BI systems, and Office of Information Technology.

    Over the next two weeks the information will be compiled, analyzed, and provided to EDMR to provide direction in enhancing the skills, processes, technologies, applications and user support for BI services that better meet the needs of University stakeholders.  

Monday, March 11, 2013

Weekly Update for the Week of March 11, 2013

ESUP at the Board of Regents
University President Kaler and Vice President and Chief Information Officer Scott Studham presented at the Board of Regents meeting on March 8, 2013. Vice President Studham addressed ESUP in his presentation, acknowledging the time is now to discuss business process changes due to the vast scope of the project. He concluded his ESUP remarks with confidence stating, “I’ve never seen a project in this good of shape at this point in time in the project.”

Vice President Studham’s presentation transcript is available online through the IT@UMN Google Group, along with a video recording of his Q&A portion. To join the group, click here and select ‘Join the Google Group’.

Changes to the HRMS Earnings Codes
According to Kris Hause, project director from the HRMS work stream, the Payroll team is inactivating over 130 earnings codes as a move toward easier user entry and process. The team hopes to identify additional opportunities for reducing the number of earnings codes as they move through Phase Two: Analyze and Design. Congratulations to the Payroll team and the user community representatives that worked with them!

Student Work Stream Reflects on IDP sessions
Participants in the monthly Student work stream meeting were asked to reflect on the past 6 weeks of IDP sessions. The group identified what has worked well, areas that have been difficult for participants, and what groups do to bring fun into IDP sessions. Some highlights include:

  • Working well: Removing/retiring modifications, group dynamics, the collaborative nature of sessions, great participation from system campuses, better/higher quality technology, having developers in the room, and snacks. 
  • Areas of difficulty: A lot of reporting and meetings/time management, varying commitments to project, tough schedule, location/environment concerns, communications (levels and volume), and time.
  • Incorporating fun: joke of the day, gourmet food and chocolate malts on the Crookston campus, stickers, homemade scones, coffee, laughing, basketball, breaks, and more food.

Second Program Quality Review Coming in mid-April
Next month, CCI’s independent consultant for higher education, Vickie Cleary, will return to the University for the second Program Quality Review (PQR). This quality assurance tool is intended to ensure proper processes and structures are in place and will continue through the life of the Program.

Quick Hits and Reminders From Across the Work Streams

  • The Portal work stream hosted the first Design Thinking workshop last week on the St. Paul campus. This successful workshop travels to the Morris campus next, arriving on Tuesday, March 12th. Registration is required and information is available online at z.umn.edu/portal.
  • The HRMS work stream will begin some IDP sessions this week but the majority of sessions will begin the week of March 18th. Click here to see the ESUP calendar for more information.

Monday, March 4, 2013

Weekly Update for the Week of March 4, 2013

HRMS Hosts Successful IDP Orientation
Over 80 people attended last week’s HRMS Orientation, including the Functional Steering Committee, team members, the OHR Upgrade Group, and Subject Matter Experts. Ben Santelman, HRMS consultant from CedarCrestone, Inc., led the group through a training on Interactive Design and Prototyping (IDP), a key component of Phase Two: Analyze and Design. A more detailed training session on IDPs for team members will be held on March 6, 2013.

For more information on this module, check out our ‘What is an IDP session?’ post on the blog!

Portal Welcomes U’s New Content Management System
The University has recently acquired a new enterprise content management system - Drupal. This is a systemwide initiative available to and supporting all system campuses, and a great opportunity for ESUP. The Enterprise Portal project will be working closely with the Drupal team so that content providers can enter content into Drupal for their websites and have it appear in the new portal.

Open Positions in ESUP
ESUP is growing! We’re currently looking for new staff members to help in ESUP’s “central” offices, located in 150 Williamson Hall and 50 WBOB. We are hiring for two strategic communicators, one communications technology associate, and one executive program coordinator.

ESUP Around Town
A number of governance and professional organizations have requested an ESUP update at their spring or summer meetings, and we are happy to oblige! If your campus organization would be interested in learning more about the upgrade, please email us at esup@umn.edu. We are happy to talk about the exciting changes going on in ESUP!

Quick Hits and Reminders From Across the Work Streams

  • The Reporting and Data Management work stream posted the summary document of themes and the slide deck of their presentation from the BI Roadmap Discovery session online at z.umn.edu/reporting.