Office of Learning and Information Technology
UW System CIO Council Meeting Notes
April 30, 2013
Wisconsin Dells, WI
CIOs and their Representatives
Peter Mann and Lorna Wong discussed the progress that has been made to integrate the Blackboard-Collaborate conferencing system as a portlet within uPortal to give all UW System (UWS) faculty and staff members the ability to launch conferences as they see fit. The CoIlaborate product will appear under the Resources tab on a redesigned landing page for the My UW System portal. Deployment of the new my.wisconsin.edu site is anticipated in the May/June timeframe. Documentation and training for the Blackboard-Collaborate Administrators will be provided. The UWS institutions should have their own rollout plans once the service becomes available and be prepared to support it with their help desks. People from outside the UW System can be invited to participate in conferences.
Jacques du Plessis asked whether it will be possible to export recorded conferences in an expeditious fashion should the product be discontinued in the future. Mann replied that recordings can be exported to the mp4 format via either a manual or batch process. Elena Pokot inquired about capacity and retention limitations on recorded sessions. Wong acknowledged that there are limits and the Blackboard-Collaborate Administrators will need to provide guidance to the faculty and staff at their institutions.
Chip Eckardt reported that the archivist at UW-Eau Claire is interested in the Archive-IT subscription service which automatically snapshots institutional websites on a regular basis. He anticipates that librarians at the UWS institutions may approach their CIOs for funding assistance. David Stack noted that the UW-Milwaukee Libraries are already backing up the campus website and related social media traffic using Archive-IT without funding support from central IT.
Lorie Docken reported that the Common Systems Review Group (CSRG) met on March 28th to finalize budget plans for fiscal year 2013-14. Their recommendations will go to the UWS chancellors for approval in May. The proposal keeps the assessments to each UWS institution at the same level as last year. In addition to many administrative system needs, the priorities for academic systems include media management, the next generation library system and maintenance of current library systems for two years.
Chris Liechty reported on the progress the Technology and Information Security Council (TISC) is making toward the development of a security policy framework that includes high level policy language, definitions of data types and baseline security recommendations. The baseline recommendations will be released during the summer along with a worksheet that each institution can use to assess where it has gaps. The overall policy document will also be finalized this summer with the aid of Judy Caruso and Gary de Clute of UW-Madison.
Lorie Docken recalled that earlier in the morning at the UWS IT Management Council (ITMC) meeting Larry Henderson, the Director of the UW Service Center, discussed the Human Resources System (HRS) roadmap that has been circulating among stakeholders for a couple months. The roadmap is aligned with the letter that the CIO Council sent to the CSRG expressing concern over the support burdens that result from extensively customizing systems to accommodate legacy business processes. The UWS HR office is working with the Service Center to examine the underlying policy issues and to identify subject matter experts who can assess the impacts to the entire organization. Feedback from the CIO Council will be needed on the various technology initiatives, e.g., workflows, issue tracking and reporting across the UW System. Docken recommended that IT staff get involved in the working groups that develop the requirements.
Before the meeting, Paul Moriarty forwarded a two page University Personnel System (UPS) Fact Sheet that has been circulating around the UWS. Lorie Docken explained that approval for the new personnel system was expected last week from the Wisconsin Joint Committee on Employment Relations (JOCER), but it was sidetracked by other pressing issues. According to state statute, JOCER needs to approve UPS before July 1. Information regarding the provisions of UPS and a possible pay plan has been flowing unevenly across the UWS institutions.
All institutions received an IT Backup and Disaster Recovery questionnaire from the UWS auditors that focused on their Student Information Systems. Several institutions will also receive follow-up visits during May. UW-Whitewater has an agreement with UW-Madison for the latter to serve as a cold site where servers could be installed in the event of an emergency. Other institutions, including UW Colleges, UW Extension, UW-Stevens Point and UW-Stout are also sharing resources. Since the questionnaire has focused the attention of the UWS institutions on disaster recovery, Dave Kieper suggested that now would be a worthwhile time to have a system-wide conversation. Lee Goldesberry noted that this is not just an IT audit, e.g., it includes procedures in the Registrar’s office in the event that central IT systems are not available. The final report from the auditors will go to the Board of Regents. David Stack introduced UW-Milwaukee’s IT auditor Mary Luebke who helped the central IT staff think through their responses to the questionnaire. Luebke will be invited to do a presentation for the CIO Council and/or the ITMC on how to respond effectively to IT audits.
A brief survey was sent to customers of the UW Service Center by the Legislative Audit Bureau (LAB). The results have not yet been compiled.
Staff who are currently participating in the MOR Associates IT Leadership Program will graduate on May 16th at a ceremony at UW-Madison. CIO Council members who have staff that are participating in the program are invited to attend. There is widespread support among the CIO Council for sponsoring another cohort in 2013-14. Host institutions will be needed for the in-person sessions. Nick Dvoracek announced that MOR Associates will also conduct a one-day session in early June at UW-Oshkosh in parallel with the PLONE conference. UW-Stevens Point is considering hosting a similar session.
Brian Kishter from the DoIT Tech Store at UW-Madison reported that Adobe is discontinuing the Cumulative Licensing Program (CLP) at the end of the year and encouraging clients to move to the Adobe Creative Cloud. Higher ed institutions are hearing various opinions from their Adobe representatives regarding future product options. It is not yet known what Adobe will offer in the way of non-cloud licenses, but the popular concurrent licensing option is going away except for computers in the same physical location, such as a lab. Jacques du Plessis noted that the easiest form of licensing to implement, i.e., the entire population, is also the most expensive. He recommended that the community be “dis-entitled” from the viewpoint that everyone should have access to expensive software packages. Ruth Ginzberg reported that she is serving on a team formed by the Midwest Higher Education Compact (MHEC) that will soon release a Request For Proposals (RFP) for alternatives to Adobe products. Meanwhile, the UWS institutions will provide Kishter with estimates of their minimum needs for Adobe products.
The June 20th CIO Council meeting will be held in Madison. Potential agenda topics include the University Personnel System, the pay plan, baseline security recommendations, IT implications of the UWM Flex Degree program, HRS roadmap, progress on the UWS networking RFP and continued discussion of Adobe licensing.
- May 16th CIO Council Video Conference 9:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m.
- June 20th CIO Council Meeting in Madison 9:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.
- July 18th CIO Meeting TBD
Host institutions are needed for future in-person CIO Council meetings.
Meeting dates, Directory of UW CIOs, Meeting Summaries: