Collaboration in Information Technology Services

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Presentation to the PACCON Conference, December 2012 about collaboration in IT at the Claremont Colleges.

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  • Good afternoon everyone, and thanks to Hyland for inviting me to speak to you today about the Claremont Colleges, the Claremont University Consortium and IT Collaboration. My focus will be on explaining the challenges and opportunities in aligning IT planning and resources with big picture Consortium plans, goals and needs. But in order to understand that, it’s important to introduce you to the Claremont Colleges and what makes us unique.
  • Today the Colleges enroll over 6500 students collectively, have 5 liberal arts undergraduate colleges that rank in the top 50 in US News rankings nationally, and have over 700 faculty and 1600 staff. One of the main benefits of this close collaboration includes the ability to cross-register at any of the other institutions. Right now, almost 20% of all classes taken at the Colleges are at another institutions other than the student’s home campus. In essence, a student take a majority of their courses at another college – something that one of my former staff members noted that he had done, giving him a Harvey Mudd College education with a Pomona College diploma by the time he was done.
  • Records Management was not something that one of our members came to us and said, “Hey, we need to go paperless and we have a number of online workflows that we want developed in order to accomplish that.”Instead, we at the Consortium recognized that we wanted to accomplish three objectives and a central Records Management program we be beneficial to us alone, but also, if done well, our members would begin to see as a valued service for them as well.This program began with three parts: Storage of print records in a central location, electronic content management and the establishment of online workflows for the paperless part of the program, and the digitization of print records.The Physical records storage is going well, with the ingestion of thousands of boxes of records from 3 of the 8 consortium members and others interested as soon as they have a building project. And digitization has kicked off, with 2 of 8 members having us scan their print documents and put them in our Odyssey system. But the most successful has been the online workflows project that we began.
  • Our first two projects have been in an online workflow to accomplish invoice processing and payment. And since CUC handles financial services for 7 of our 8 members, this has a great impact across the consortium. What we did was convert a paper-based workflow with few internal controls to an online workflow that streamlined the process and would ensure that proper approvals were taking place and result in improved internal controls. So far, we have two members entirely in the system and two others poised to join in the coming months. In addition, although we have no students at the consortium, we have facilitated the implementation of the Admissions online workflow at Harvey Mudd College and Pitzer College, who are both doing their admissions reading entirely through the system for the coming academic year.
  • How do we think we’ve done so far?Well, we have definitely reduced our paper consumption since we no longer approve invoices on paper and have multiple steps of the process involved in additional production of paper records through photocopying and filing. We have reduced storage, as we at CUC were able to move into a new building and eliminate the hundreds of filing cabinets holding invoices and payment records and move the older files still necessary for retention into a central, off-campus location. Where we probably have succeeded the most has been in reducing the significant amount of labor invested in the print workflow and become more efficient through the online workflow. Data entry now happens at the receipt of the invoice, by whatever staff are responsible for the payment immediately and put into the central system that eliminates double or triple data entry. And our internal controls have improved, even if only anecdotally.
  • We also have some non quantitative measures that we believe prove ROI for us in this program. We have improved internal controls and expect our audit firm to note those in the next audit. We can also monitor staff performance much closer now – we can see which staff are preparing invoices and doing other work in the system and how efficient they are individually. We have much more participation in the program which breaks down silos and makes staff more aware of the work of other departments.And since imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, we know we have done something right since one of our member institutions has purchased the same software solution and plans to operate it in tandem with ours.
  • We also have some non quantitative measures that we believe prove ROI for us in this program. We have improved internal controls and expect our audit firm to note those in the next audit. We can also monitor staff performance much closer now – we can see which staff are preparing invoices and doing other work in the system and how efficient they are individually. We have much more participation in the program which breaks down silos and makes staff more aware of the work of other departments.And since imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, we know we have done something right since one of our member institutions has purchased the same software solution and plans to operate it in tandem with ours.
  • We also have some non quantitative measures that we believe prove ROI for us in this program. We have improved internal controls and expect our audit firm to note those in the next audit. We can also monitor staff performance much closer now – we can see which staff are preparing invoices and doing other work in the system and how efficient they are individually. We have much more participation in the program which breaks down silos and makes staff more aware of the work of other departments.And since imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, we know we have done something right since one of our member institutions has purchased the same software solution and plans to operate it in tandem with ours.
  • Good afternoon everyone, and thanks to Hyland for inviting me to speak to you today about the Claremont Colleges, the Claremont University Consortium and IT Collaboration. My focus will be on explaining the challenges and opportunities in aligning IT planning and resources with big picture Consortium plans, goals and needs. But in order to understand that, it’s important to introduce you to the Claremont Colleges and what makes us unique.
  • Collaboration in Information Technology Services

    1. 1. 8 The Claremont CollegesIndependentInstitutions Working Together inCollaboration
    2. 2. Complex IT Environmento 65 Information SystemsOnly 5 are shared by all 8 • Emergency Notification • GIS • LMS • Door Access • Digital Signage
    3. 3. ITC Oversight for ProgramsJoint Intercollegiate Services: • CINE (Internet) • Administrative Student Information Systems • Sakai (LMS)Lead College Services: • Blackboard • Financial • CalendarPartnership Services: • Enterprise Content Management • Identity Management
    4. 4. Enhancing shared servicesthrough technology• Just in Time vs. At the Right Time• Integrated vs. Best of Breed• Hosted vs. On Premises• DR & Business Continuity• Technology changing to Vendor Management
    5. 5. EnterpriseContentManagement• Physical Records Storage• ECM & Online Workflows• Digitization
    6. 6. Invoice Processing • CUC (FY09) • HMC (FY12) • CMC & Pitzer (FY13)Admissions• HMC (AY12-13)• Pitzer (AY12-13
    7. 7. Assessment • Reduced paper/print based consumption • Somewhat reduced storage • Significantly reduced personnel/manual processing • Improved internal controls
    8. 8. Non-quantitative measures • (Or at least not yet quantified) • (Or prior quantification was lacking) • Improvement in internal controls • Increased ability to monitor performance • Increased participation • Imitation
    9. 9. Identity Management • Identity As A Service • Participation at the time of need • Hosted, so “take it or leave it” with little or no customization/control • Best of Breed, so progress must be deliberate (one system at a time) • Shared Licensing
    10. 10. System Migration • Payroll & Time/Attendance • Hosted, so “take it or leave it” with little or no customization/control • Reduced ability to diverge, by customer • Less hardware & software to manage • Legacy system support still needed • Vendor management increases

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