Earlier this month in the Technology Services Fall Divisional meeting, I discussed the primary goals and initiatives that Technology Services is focusing on for 2014-2015. I would like to reiterate those goals and initiatives in this month’s CIO blog. Goal 1 – Make Progress on Major Projects: There are several large technology projects underway in various stages that are key to improving VCU’s technology and business infrastructure. 1) UCC upgrade: We have been substantially delayed in this project while awaiting the necessary approvals from the Commonwealth’s Bureau of Capital Outlay Management (BCOM), but we expect this project to begin moving forward soon. This will provide a more robust power and cooling infrastructure and a higher level of redundancy in the University Computer Center. Facilities and TS are partnering with a design/build firm on this work. 2) Building Access Project: In collaboration with VCU Police and Facilities, TS is leading a project to migrate Building Access systems from C-Cure to CBORD CS Gold, allowing us to integrate VCUCard business functions and building access functions onto one platform. We have converted several buildings and residence halls and will be continuing the conversion process through the year. 3) PARCS: Parking and Transportation, with the assistance of TS, will be implementing a new parking system. An RFP was issued and the project is in the final stages of vendor selection and contract negotiation. 4) RADAR: Development and Alumni Relations, with TS assisting, is implementing a new Constituency Relationship Management (CRM) system. RADAR (Rams Advancing Development and Alumni Relations) is based on the Blackbaud eCRM platform. The test system has been set up and data conversion from the Millennium system is well underway. This project is expected to be completed within a year. 5) Time and Attendance (RealTime): Human Resources, in partnership with TS, is working to implement VCU RealTime, based upon the TimeClock Plus system. While this project has had some challenges, we are refocusing on getting this system up and running, and TS has been involved in testing both from a functional and technical aspect. I will be providing more detail on each of these projects as they progress. Goal 2 – Banner revitalization: TS is leading a major initiative to evaluate our usage of Banner from both a technical and functional perspective. Strata Information Group (SIG) has been engaged to do an initial discovery of our current environment, usage, and business process, and will be working with teams in Strategic Enrollment Management, Finance, and HR, to identify quick wins as well as long term changes needed. Goal 3 – Initiate and make progress on an Identity Management project: Now that we have restructured our organization to be better able to focus in this area and we have progressed in our work on the Active Directory project, we will be better positioned to define and implement a VCU Identity Management program. Goal 4 – Continued Infrastructure improvements: We will continue to implement network and telecommunications infrastructure improvements including continued build-out of the research network, continued expansion of wireless, continued expansion and improvement of our fiber plant, upgrading our Avaya platform, and piloting VOIP in the Health Systems. Goal 5 – Redefine Collaboration strategy: We will be finalizing our migration off of the Lotus Notes platform and in collaboration with VCU Health Systems and School of Medicine investigating ways to offer a more integrated user experience in messaging and calendaring. We will also continue to progress in evaluating and implementing video and other conferencing platforms. Internal priorities: Internal to Technology Services, there are two areas of primary focus:
- Space: We are close to finalizing plans to obtain additional space for Technology Services. This will allow us to free up space in TAB which will allow us to look at our space usage strategically and to develop a plan to better utilize TAB and Cabell.
- Staffing/compensation: As the results of a compensation study from HR are tabulated, we will work toward evaluating staffing and compensation in TS and develop short and longer term plans to ensure we are better aligned with the market and can better support career progression.
As always, thanks to all for the work you do and your contributions to VCU! Alex