Presentation on theme: "Building a Better IT Support Model: Making Banner Work Presented by: Bill Balint, Indiana University of Pennsylvania."— Presentation transcript:
Building a Better IT Support Model: Making Banner Work Presented by: Bill Balint, Indiana University of Pennsylvania
Session Goal To acquaint attendees with strategies developed at IUP that provide success in the face of an increasingly complex computing environment – particular focus on the IT professional. Implementation strategies will be examined as will transitions that allow for successful continuing operations.
Topics of Discussion/Agenda Slide Indiana University of Pennsylvania – Banner-related Profile Primary implementation challenges Steps to combat those challenges Migration from implementation to continuing operations Current strategies for success
About IUP 14,200 students, 1,800 employees Largest Member, 14-school Pa. State System (PASSHE) Doctoral I 3 campuses; graduate center; clock-hour programs Located in Indiana, Pa.
Banner at IUP Banner 7.x Implemented 1998-2000 All five baseline modules Four web self-service products Banner Xtender Solutions, Workflow Eight major satellite packages (facilities, Id Card, etc.) Some 100 custom-written programs and web applications Substantial custom-built data warehouse Oracle 9i, 10g App. Server Linux as of Nov., 2006
Implementation Challenges Aggressive timeframe New functionality desired immediately: “Where’s the fancy stuff we paid for that the sales people showed us?” Tight Budgets Extra costs maintaining legacy environment in addition to implementation costs Inadequate Staffing Keep all current systems running and implement at the same time with the same people
Remedies Perfect World Add more time Get more people Spend more money Real World Policy Decisions Personnel Distribution Technology Investments
Sample Key Policy Decisions Define overall business needs immediately Integrated system, web-based services, redeploy IT staff, etc. Determine “gap fill” strategy immediately Build, buy, modify or do without
Sample Key Policy Decisions Go by the “textbook” and modify from there Sungard has done this many times before Trust them, but hold them accountable! Make quality count from the start Exclusive time commitment by staff, appropriate consulting levels, written list of specific deliverables
IUP Implementation Core Personnel Project Leadership Executive Steering Committee Empowered and Available Steering Committee Chair Contract issues, problem resolution Project Manager Daily operations, problem escalation “The person that worries about the project every day”
IUP Implementation Core Personnel Implementation Teams (One per module) Directors of impacted offices Work Team chairs Responsible for INB, web self-service, interfaces Cross-team groups formed for Workflow, Luminus, ODS/EDW, Xtender if required Work Teams Temporary or ad-hoc Build validation tables, evaluate reporting needs, create training Functional/Technical mix
IUP Implementation Extended Personnel Technical Support Manages all technical resources Installs, upgrades, work team assignments, etc. Ensures that DBAs and developers are properly trained Deploys viable technical infrastructure Coordinates functional training on tool set Banner navigation, reporting tools, etc.
IUP Implementation Extended Personnel Quality Reviewer Auditing and systems knowledge, independent assessments Project “outsider” Data Integration Team Data standards, data integration issues IR functions/data warehouse ODS/EDW if applicable
Migrating to Continuing Operations - Functional Executive Steering Committee Individuals partner with CIO in oversight role Prioritizes deployment of custom-built solutions, Banner enhancements, other packages, upgrades, etc. Process Teams Re-configured into operations groups (student, resource, institutional advancement, financial aid) Ensures smooth on-going operations, tests upgrades, enhancements, new products, etc.
Migrating to Continuing Operations - Functional Data Integration Team exists on an “as needed” basis Warehousing, IR, address, duplicate Ids, etc. Quality Reviewer, Project Manager, Work Team members Return to pre-project roles
Migrating to Continuing Operations - Technical The emerging Banner-related computing environment… is more complex… Workflow, XTender Solutions, Luminus, ODS/EDW, etc. requires expertise in more technologies… Oracle 10G DB, XML, Messaging, OAS requires a true 24 x 7 support strategy… Most of the above in a web-based world …But resources to support it are not growing
Building Blocks For Success Reduce User Support Needs Fast, Effective Support Triage Create Redundant Expertise Long-range Planning Enterprise Upgrades Professional Development
Sample Support Reduction Techniques Rely on “Sungard Higher Education” technology For Banner: Pro*C, PL/SQL, web self-service products, limited MS-Access solutions Other applications: interfaces, separate schemas, etc. Actively Lobby For Increase in Functional Knowledge/Skill New hires, new job descriptions, training program Special help for ‘the willing and able’
Sample Support Reduction Techniques Build reference web pages and specialized training material Ad-hoc reporting, letter generation, “How To” documents Emphasize Operational Support Registration, fiscal year-end close, payroll cycles, etc.
IUP IT Triage System Create a Help Desk for all IT Services All calls and resulting actions documented in tracking software Creates knowledge base Invest in tools that prevent/help correct problems DBA support software, code management Help Desk Support Level I – student worker Level II – generalist Level III – expert Level IV - vendor Route large support requests to quarterly ranking
Build Redundant Expertise Each module/sub-module assigned to primary and backup support person Finance, HR, Advancement, Financial Aid, Admissions, Registrar, A/R, “Other” student functions Primary support is responsible for all knowledge transfer to the backup Documentation, 1-on-1 meetings Support requests routed to backup at times to help that person gain expertise
Enterprise Upgrade Planning Maintain Upgrade Calendar with executive approval Create functional and technical timelines as far in advance as possible Prepare Infrastructure Changes Well in Advance Oracle 10G, desktop requirement compliance
IT Staff - Professional Development Cast a wide, yet cost-effective net Traditional – conferences, instructor-led training, Banner help and release guides, Listserves, periodicals, etc. Non-traditional – home-grown knowledge base, web-based instruction, internal knowledge transfer sessions and web pages, industry web sites, etc. Make professional development part of employee evaluation
Benefits To The Institution Efficient, documented customer service Call tracking -> Knowledge Base Objective rationing of IT resources Quarterly rankings, help desk call results Planning and professional development help staff navigate change – which can directly lead to productivity enhancements
Summary Large-scale software implementations are stressful, costly and difficult The migration to continuing operations is also challenging The Banner-related computing environment is also becoming more complex, further taxing IT staff However, strategies do exist that can help achieve excellence in utilizing their enterprise information systems