Office of Learning and Information Technology
UW System CIO Council Meeting
May 20, 2004
780 Regent Street
- Wisconsin Converged Network Initiative
- Wisconsin Education & Research Optical Cyberinfrastructure
- D2L Update
- ORACLE Contract
- IAA Governance Working Group
- Update on Don Norris Assessment of Common Systems
- UW-Madison’s preparation for Lawson implementation
- Next CIO Council Meeting
CIOs and their Representatives
Lynn Paulson, the UWS Assistant Vice President for Budget and Planning, was introduced.
The agenda for this afternoon's WCNI meeting was distributed. The governance group met a week ago. The focus of the WCNI governance group is on the inter-relationship between the two managed networks.
The goal is to have a small governance group, but the membership and structure has not yet been determined. One proposal was for a chair and two deputies who would provide checks and balances. The governance group also discussed the possible business model and pricing, which are difficult to determine given that the architectures of both networks have not yet been defined. Once the State contract is let, the main issue for the governance will be whether the vendor is meeting their commitments. Another article about the two network initiatives will be in the Business Journal this Friday.
In chapter 8 of The Flickering Mind: The False Promise of Technology in the Classroom and How Learning Can Be Saved (ISBN: 1400060443), Todd Oppenheimer talks about the perils of the relationship between the State and SBC.
The governance model during the buildout for the next two years will give all of the UWS institutions a voice on the WEROC Policy Council (WPC). It will report to the President of the UWS and through the President to the Board of Regents. A five member Executive Committee will be formed to make decisions quickly. There will also be liaison representation on the WPC from:
- state government
- the technical colleges
- the WAICU institutions
- WiscNet, other than UWS
The technical subcommittee members are David Lois, Perry Brunelli, David Crass and Brian Remer. The overall design will be a large and simple network, which is easier and cheaper to maintain and provides higher quality. The key will be flexibility, and the initial design will not be set in stone. The network will not construct new fiber cable systems, but will lease, purchase and cooperate with both new and existing, fiber systems that are available from multiple sources.
The design process will endeavor to create diverse, redundant paths to the campuses wherever possible. Optical cable may be procured for as many campuses as reasonable. Local loops of community area networks (CANs) will be encouraged. Ed Meachen has arranged for presentations at the Vice Chancellors and CBO meetings in June. At some point, the current BadgerNet equipment will be relocated away from the UW System campuses. In the meantime, multiple points of presence will be need to be accommodated on the campuses.
The Services Subcommittee tried to move away from bandwidth and governance issues. Their recommended findings are that:
- services can be provided both centrally and locally, but local administration of all services is preferred
- the underlying network facility will transport services between suppliers and members at no additional cost
- services will be separable from membership
- Service Level Agreements will be created for the various services
- services will be of two classes, base effort and differentiated
- differentiated services may incur additional charges, preferably not based upon bandwidth
- external service providers should be accommodated
- external providers will only provide services to WEROC members, not vendor to vendor
- external service providers will be able to depend upon minimum quality and availability requirements
- services, tools and methodologies for end-to-end monitoring should be provided
The subcommittee and the CIO Council discussed whether the Northern Tier Initiative, Desire2Learn and grid computing, e.g., Condor, would be classified as services.
The subcommittee developed principles of:
- fairness and equability
- financial participation by all UWS institutions in the creation of the network based upon their relative sizes
- a UW System Administration subsidy to offset the costs of the backbone build-out
- incremental construction of the network
- definition of services separately from the network
- the possibility of pay-as-you-go services
- tying services to SLAs
- distributing operational costs on an FTE basis
Kathy Pletcher reported that the original upgrade to version 7.3, and the associated outage in late May, has been cancelled. There are still problems with the gradebook and UNICODE. Possible outage dates in August are being identified in conjunction with the site admins. However, it may be possible to host critical courses at D2L during the upgrade process. Because there are 15 separate institutions involved, the upgrade process is likely to take more than a couple hours, but the day and a half estimate is conservative. D2L has appointed a new account rep for Learn@UW.
In response to a question from Dick Cleek, Annie Stunden reported that the Learn@UW efforts is adequately resourced, but not overly so. If multiple institutions have time crunches simultaneously, the resources will be insufficient.
Since the last CIO Council meeting, Lori Voss has met with UWS Legal Council and others regarding the ORACLE contract issues. It would help in her discussions, if she knew the actual usage of the features in question. Some 15% of the maintenance payments represent the application server.
Jack Duwe noted that usage of the features is very difficult to determine because CDs have been distributed all over the campuses because the contract is set up as a site license.
Carrie Regenstein distributed a Memo of Understanding that will be signed by the OLIT office and each campus. It outlines how IAA will maintain FERPA compliance. A spreadsheet outlining the state of the IAA feeds from the UWS institutions was distributed. MILER representatives are prepared to assist the campuses with the feeds. The campus data is needed to enable use of Hyperion/Brio.
The consultant Don Norris was engaged to do an assessment of the Common Systems. He is meeting with several campuses and the Common Systems Interoperability Architecture Working Group (CSIAWG). At UW-Oshkosh, he met with the campus Executive Committee and learned of their experiences participating in the initial rollout of the PeopleSoft student system. He inquired about the value in bringing up these complicated, common systems. The campus had a positive response.
His visit to UW-Stout was hurried, but he learned about their investments in both common and campus-specific systems. They recommended that Common Systems be truly common.
At UW-Eau Claire there was a back and forth discussion with a large group. Jim Lowe recommends this approach. Dan Norris was soliciting stretch goals and looking forward to student services that aren't yet in place. He talked about keeping databases separate from business rules, and focusing on communities of practice rather than on best practices.
David Hart reported that there is now a community of practice of 24 institutions that are using Brio. They have a community of practice web site, http://brio.communityzero.com/heug, that is funded by Hyperion.
Don Norris will subsequently visit the UW Colleges, UW-Madison and the Common Systems Review Group
It was suggested that Don Norris be invited to comment on some of the Common System selection processes that have been used in the past, in particular APBS. Dick Cleek and Ed Meachen noted that the Common Systems processes have significantly matured since then.
A license for the HiSoftware web accessibility software tools was signed based upon a recommendation from the Campus Web Council of Wisconsin. The cost is $750 per institution for the license and the first year's maintenance. Lorie Docken needs to know by June 11th whether institutions are interested in participating.
UW-Madison hired Diane Haubner as an APBS project manger for the entire campus. She is a consultant who has implemented Lawson about 15 times, as well as PeopleSoft. She is identifying what has and hasn't been done on the Madison campus, as well as identifying what is needed from the APBS core team. There is also an APBS project manager within DoIT. In addition, UW-Milwaukee and UW-Madison will meet in a couple weeks to talk about collaboration regarding institutional readiness.
Diane reported her opinions as an outside observer about the potential impacts on UW-Madison as a campus as well as the services they provide for the UW System.>
As the APBS project went forward, some people at UW-Madison drew back because of their disagreements with the project direction. When Diane came onboard, she developed an integrated project plan for APBS that makes note of the other ERP systems that are impacted and the resources required. She is especially focused on the UW Processing Center's participation in the APBS system test, which will begin on June 15th.
Diane created a detailed project plan and a work breakdown structure for UW-Madison. The actual versus estimated hours per subtask are reported each week, as well as estimates of the percent complete. The subprojects are reported via a stoplight analysis that assigns one of three colors to each based upon their status. Their projects are on track, but struggling with some of the aspects that have a bigger scope than originally thought.
DoIT is staffing the APBS project with technical staff and taking the lead on all technical gaps related to UW-Madison. They are enhancing IAA and the UW-Madison directory to meet their data requirements.
The APBS team has been clear in documenting their scope. However, as the project gets closer to go-live, the scope has been reduced:
- employee and manager self serve - excluded
- Kronos time entry and student help - excluded
- near real time interface with Peoplesoft student administration - excluded/removed in the Common System budget cut
- enhanced data access - limited
- real time interface to IAA - limited
- enhanced data warehouse information - limited/controlled
- historical data - limited
- reports - limited pre-written reports
There were 1,500 reports in the legacy system. Less than 5% of the current reports will be delivered at go-live. The APBS project says it isn't possible to get data for additional reporting directly from Lawson tables because of performance concerns; other sources need to be identified as well as which reports should be either ad hoc or pre-written and by whom.
Each UWS institution needs to determine how to reengineer its process, especially the delegation of the duties such as data entry. New forms need to be developed. It will take longer to set up an employee because it takes quite a few forms compared to IADS.
A go-live preparation plan is being developed, especially running the last payrolls off of IADS. It is recommended that new appointments be entered before conversion, because it will be quicker. There will be a UWS APBS support desk, and each institution must identify one key support contact. It is important to ensure that all who users who need access to certain data sources are identified and set up.
The core team will provide a nice e-learning package. Each institution will need to schedule training for both early adopters and remainder of its staff. Since campus processes will be re-engineered, the training will have to take the re-engineering into account.
The core team conducts bi-weekly WISLINE meetings, and each institution needs to communicate internally the information that is discussed. UW-Madison will be in a summer-steps communication phase from now until the end of system test on August 18th. A fall-steps communication plan will be implemented subsequently.
The APBS system test uses a risk-based approach, which necessarily excludes the issues that are considered to be of a lower risk, including those items that were tested two years ago in the conference room pilot (CRP). There will not be specific user or operations acceptance testing, nor testing of any interfaces. Some functions will not be available in time for the system test. Twenty-seven reports, out of the original 1,500, will be tested during system test. Some data will be missing from the data warehouse during system test. Most of the UWPC business cases were excluded from the system test, but UW-Madison is working with the core team to test the cases themselves.
It will cost UW-Madison about $1M to develop the necessary interfaces. The data sources are not yet defined, and the interfaces won't be available for system test, so they will have to be developed later.
UW-Madison is currently negotiating with HRIS to finalize delegation of responsibilities between the new HRIS and the former UWPC. It is expected that HRIS will assume all responsibility for non-UW-Madison campuses and some responsibility for UW-Madison processes.
There are nearly 20,000 employees in UWS, not including student help. UW-Madison wants all of the test cases they developed included in the system test. All critical functions that fail system test must be corrected and re-tested in time for go-live by UW-Madison staff. Functions that are still under development, and not ready for system test, need to be tested before go live. All data required to produce accurate reports and interfaces need to readily available and tested before go-live. Critical issues such as resolution for multiple IDs, UDDS synchronization, etc. need to be worked out.
Diane will create a version of her presentation that will be shared with Margo Lessard, and then the CIOs.
The next CIO Council meeting will be on June 17th, 2004.