December 2015

0 Commentsby   |  01.08.16  |  Uncategorized

Here are the highlights for December 2015 as well as our ongoing work:

  • 96 development issues and 107 end-user support requests were resolved.
  • We recorded an overall application uptime of 99.85%.
  • Fast fact – Our campus ID card system, CS Gold, provides access to 312 locations across campus.  Locations include campus dining registers, card readers in Moody Coliseum for chapel, numerous readers for door access, and readers at CitySquare in Dallas.  There were a total of 2,196,865 transactions recorded in the CS Gold ledger for 2015, which includes all meal plan activity, card swipes for door access, card purchases in The Campus Store and student changes to meal plans.
  • Did you know? The Operations division announced a new mission statement in late-2015: “We have the desire, knowledge, and expertise to help the communities of ACU achieve their goals.”  Operations is led by Kevin Roberts, VP of Operations, and includes personnel in Construction and Risk Management, Facilities and Campus Management and Information Technology.
  • Motorhelp updates – We applied a number of updates to Motorhelp, IT’s custom-written application for customer service and support.  Many of the changes are intended to improve our change management process and associated communication.
  • Banner updates – We appreciate the help of folks in multiple campus offices to prepare and complete approximately 35 updates to Banner the weekend before Christmas and earlier this week.  The updates addressed needs for year-end reporting, 2016 tax changes and pre-requisites for Ellucian XE applications.  We will install additional updates later this month before installing our first Ellucian XE applications.
  • Start-of-term preparation – We have been busy preparing for the start of the Spring 2016 term next week.  We have been working on updates to other applications such as Blogs, door access changes, meal plan setup, and general support of faculty preparing for their classes.

See  December 2015 – Resolved Issues for a more in-depth summary.

 

November 2015

0 Commentsby   |  12.18.15  |  Uncategorized

Here are the highlights for November 2015 as well as our ongoing work:

  • 75 development issues and 92 end-user support requests were resolved.
  • We recorded an overall application uptime of 99.95%.
  • Fast fact – Since August 1st, 372 unique users have logged into Internet Native Banner (aka Big Banner).  INB users have accounted for 1,285,082 form accesses with the most-used forms including Financial Aid Record Maintenance (ROARMAN), Student General Information Form (SZIGENI), Advancement Identification (APAIDEN), Process Submission Controls (GJAPCTL), and General Comment Form (GZACOMM).
  • Banner updates – We will apply multiple Banner updates this weekend in preparation for year-end reporting and Ellucian XE applications we will install in January.
  • End-of-term maintenance – There are some regularly-scheduled maintenance activities that take place near or after the end of the Fall 2015 term.  This work includes support of final grade entry by faculty, end-of-year Banner updates, door access changes with our ID card system (CS Gold), meal plan rollover for the spring, and support of the student billing process for the Spring 2016 term.

See November 2015 – Resolved Issues for a more in-depth summary.

 

October 2015

0 Commentsby   |  11.16.15  |  Uncategorized

Here are the highlights for October 2015 as well as our ongoing work:

  • 82 development issues and 131 end-user support requests were resolved.
  • We recorded an overall application uptime of 99.97%.
  • Fast fact – Google Chrome, Safari and Firefox account for 91% of traffic in myACU thus far in the Fall 2015 term.  Chrome is the most popular browser with 44% of user sessions followed by Safari with 36% and Firefox with 11%.
  • Did you know? ACU has an agreement with Microsoft to provide Office 365 to our students and employees for free.  You can find more details about this on the Team55 website.
  • New Systems Analyst – We are excited to have a new Systems Analyst, Brennan Turner, on board as of October 26th.  Brennan is currently training to support the services we manage and is already involved in work to support Banner and the Ellucian XE project.
  • Ellucian XE – We are working with multiple functional areas on campus to test prerequisite Banner updates in preparation for the next major release of Banner.  The Ellucian Extensible Ecosystem (or simply, “XE”) will provide a web-friendly interface that Ellucian intends to be mobile, simple and flexible.  Those who use Internet Native Banner (aka INB, Big Banner and Banner Forms) will be pleased to know that this part of Banner will be completely web-based with no dependency on Java.  We have targeted a rollout of our first XE applications by the end of the year.  The complete XE project will take the next 18 to 24 months to complete.

See October 2015 -Resolved Issues for a more in-depth summary.

 

September 2015

0 Commentsby   |  10.16.15  |  Uncategorized

Here are the highlights for September 2015 as well as our ongoing work:

  • 62 development issues and 148 end-user support requests were resolved.
  • We recorded an overall application uptime of 99.88%.
  • Fast fact – October is National Cyber Security Awareness month.  As technology changes, we need to become more conscious of the potential cyber threats that exist.  Information Technology is offering weekly sessions to show how you can keep your data safe.  Please visit the Technology Support blog for more information.
  • Did you know? Gmail includes a Labs featured called Canned Responses that is useful when you find yourself sending a routine message.  Canned responses allow you to compose a response and reuse it as many times as you would like. You can create and save as many canned responses as you like and give each one a descriptive title to make finding it later quick and easy.
  • Personnel change – One of our longtime Systems Analysts accepted a job opportunity and left us in mid-August.  The last two months have been tough, but we are excited to have a new team member join us on October 26th.
  • Innovation project – Development has started on the winning innovation idea presented by a cross-functional IT team this past spring.  We are working with a free-lance developer to create an application that will allow users to associate themselves with a particular location at a particular time.  The application will support multiple use cases, including small group chapels and class attendance.
  • Ellucian XE – We are working with Ellucian to plan and implement the next major release of Banner.  The Ellucian Extensible Ecosystem (or simply, “XE”) will provide a web-friendly interface that Ellucian intends to be mobile, simple and flexible.  We anticipate rollout out the first of many XE applications by the end of the year.

See September 2015 – Resolved Issues for a more in-depth summary.

 

August 2015

0 Commentsby   |  09.12.15  |  Uncategorized

Here are the highlights for August 2015 as well as our ongoing work:

  • 78 development issues and 200 end-user support requests were resolved.
  • We recorded an overall application uptime of 99.86%.
  • Fast fact – During the first week of school there were 95,223 user sessions in myACU, which was a 14% increase compared to the first week of school last year. 40% of all sessions were from mobile and tablet devices.
  • Did you know? Google Calendar includes a “Find a Time” feature, which can help schedule a meeting at a time that works for everyone.  This is a good alternative to third-party tools such as Doodle where you have to poll people for availability.
  • Salesforce at ACU Dallas – ACU Dallas will go live with Salesforce as their CRM this week.  This completes a project that we have been preparing for since last fall.  The project includes functionality to integrate Salesforce with Banner, similar to the existing integration between Talisma CRM and Banner.
  • Adobe Creative Cloud – The student pilot of Adobe Creative Cloud is underway with approximately 500 students for the fall before a full release in Spring 2016.  Adobe shared that we are one of their first enterprise customers to integrate single sign-on.
  • Degree Works upgrade – We completed an upgrade of Degree Works last week, which supports academic advising and degree planning.  This update includes a number of new features, including enhancements to the Student Educational Planner (SEP), which can help students and advisors plan an efficient academic journey.  This update will allow us to upgrade our Operational Data Store (ODS) later this fall, which will provide new reporting options for Degree Works.
  • Start of school – Our group has been busy helping faculty, staff and students gear up for the Fall 2015 term.  Our work included typical start-of-school tasks, such as preparing the meal plan system for use, door access for residence halls and classrooms, and support of course tools such as myACU and Canvas.

See August 2015 – Resolved Issues for a more in-depth summary.

 

July 2015

0 Commentsby   |  08.14.15  |  Uncategorized

Here are the highlights for July 2015 as well as our ongoing work:

  • 59 development issues and 153 end-user support requests were resolved.
  • We recorded an overall application uptime of 99.87%.
  • Fast fact – We completed work earlier this month to fully integrate Canvas LMS with Banner and myACU.   446 Canvas courses have been created for the Fall 2015 term, which includes 3,857 students.  This will be our first term to use Canvas as our single LMS.
  • ACU Dallas CRM – We are in the midst of work with Apex IT, our implementation partner, to develop functionality in Salesforce to support recruiting and admissions.  The first phase of this work is targeted for completion at the beginning of September, which includes functionality to integration Salesforce with Banner.
  • Adobe Creative Cloud – We finished implementing single sign-on with Adobe Creative Cloud earlier this month.  ACU will be piloting student access with approximately 500 to 600 students this fall in preparation for a full release in Spring 2016.
  • Student-submitted ID photos – We are working with the Depot to introduce functionality that will allow incoming students to submit their ID photos online.  This will improve the New Student Orientation experience, which includes standing in a long line to have photos taken and IDs printed for pickup later.  We will offer this service to a pilot group of students attending orientation next week.
  • Summer maintenance – We have wrapped up multiple projects to update applications and prepare services for the fall.  This included cooperation with Enterprise Infrastructure to move multiple applications and databases to new servers.

See July 2015 – Resolved Issues for a more in-depth summary.

 

June 2015

0 Commentsby   |  07.16.15  |  Uncategorized

Here are the highlights for June 2015 as well as our ongoing work:

  • 44 development issues and 142 end-user support requests were resolved.
  • We recorded an overall application uptime of 99.92%.
  • Fast fact – During fiscal year 2015 (June 2014 through May 2015), we decommissioned four services and brought 11 new services online.  We now maintain a service portfolio of 128 unique applications, backend services and data integrations.  This number will increase in the next few months as additional services go live.
  • ACU Dallas CRM – We are in the midst of work with Apex IT, our implementation partner, to develop functionality in Salesforce to support recruiting and admissions.  The first phase of this work is targeted for completion by the end of August, which includes functionality to push Salesforce data into Banner when students are admitted.
  • Adobe Creative Cloud – We are working with folks from Educational Technology to implementation single sign-on and data integration for Adobe Creative Cloud access.
  • Student-submitted ID photos – We are working with the Depot to introduce functionality that will allow incoming students to submit their ID photos online.  This will improve the New Student Orientation experience, which includes standing in a long line to have photos taken and IDs printed for pickup later.  If all goes well, we will offer this service to students attending orientation in August.
  • Summer maintenance – Multiple projects are underway to update applications and prepare services for the fall.  This includes working with Enterprise Infrastructure to move multiple applications to new servers.

See June 2015 – Resolved Issues for a more in-depth summary.

 

May 2015

0 Commentsby   |  06.16.15  |  Uncategorized

Here are the highlights for May 2015 as well as our ongoing work:

  • 63 development issues and 129 end-user support requests were resolved.
  • We recorded an overall application uptime of 99.99%.
  • Fast fact – Computing Services staff were distributed among three cross-IT department teams for an innovation challenge.  Teams were tasked with identifying an innovative idea that could benefit the university.  Each team presented their idea to members of the Senior Leadership Team (SLT) in May and the winning team was announced at the beginning of June.  Congratulations to the winning team that presented an idea that will improve our ability to capture class attendance data as well as other activities that occur across campus.  The ideas of all three teams were well-received and are being discussed further for possible implementation.
  • ACU Dallas CRM – Salesforce has been selected as the customer relationship management (CRM) system to support recruiting and admissions.  Today we kick off a project with Apex IT, our implementation partner.  This will be a multi-month project to build and configure the required functionality as well as integrate with Banner.
  • Talisma CRM update – We worked with our vendor, Campus Management, as well as Enrollment Management to complete a major update of our CRM for recruiting and admissions at the end of May. There were some post-update issues to resolve, but the process went relatively smoothly.
  • Summer maintenance – Multiple projects are currently underway to update applications, including Banner, Degree Works and Uniprint.  Additionally, we are working with Enterprise Infrastructure to move multiple applications to new server hardware.
  • Net revenue project – Computing Services, in conjunction with Finance, Financial Aid, and Admissions, is working on a project to gather, analyze, and project data related to revenue as it comes from tuition. This will help decision makers analyze net revenue and discount amounts/rates for future growth.

See May 2015 – Resolved Issues for a more in-depth summary.

 

April 2015

0 Commentsby   |  05.12.15  |  Uncategorized

Here are the highlights for April 2015 as well as our ongoing work:

  • 80 development issues and 163 end-user support requests were resolved.
  • We recorded an overall application uptime of 99.90%.
  • Fast fact – The 2014-2015 school year was busy for Computing Services.  We resolved a total of 1,144 end-user support requests and 569 development issues between September 2014 and April 2015.  In addition to daily support and maintenance, we applied numerous application updates, moved applications to new services, developed data integrations with new applications and deployed new applications.
  • ACU Dallas portal – On April 24th, we unveiled a specialized version of myACU for ACU Dallas students that is available at online.acu.edu.  This new site focuses on content for the adult student population that is based off-campus.
  • ACU Dallas CRM – Salesforce has been selected as the customer relationship management (CRM) system to support recruiting and admissions.  We we will work with an implementation partner on a multi-month project to build and configure the required functionality as well as integrate with Banner.
  • Net revenue project – Computing Services, in conjunction with Finance, Financial Aid, and Admissions, is working on a project to gather, analyze, and project data related to revenue as it comes from tuition. This will help decision makers analyze net revenue and discount amounts/rates for future growth.
  • Talisma CRM update – We are working with our vendor, Campus Management, as well as Enrollment Management on a major update of our CRM for recruiting and admissions. We will also move the application and backend services to new servers.  The work will be completed the last weekend in May.

See April 2015 – Resolved Issues for a more in-depth summary.

 

March 2015

0 Commentsby   |  04.10.15  |  Uncategorized

Here are some of the highlights for March 2015 as well as our ongoing work:

  • 92 development issues and 128 end-user support requests were resolved.
  • We recorded an overall application uptime of 99.92%.
  • Fast fact – Computing Services worked closely with the Office of the Registrar to implement Ellucian Degree Works, which replaces another degree evaluation system called CAPP.  Degree Works was brought online in the last year to empower students to see their remaining degree requirements and encourage them to finish on time.  It also allows academic advisors to see what substitution and waiver forms have been applied to the student’s degree plan and how they are progressing toward completing their degree.  Use of Degree Works has been critical in the last two months in preparation for the fall class registration cycle, which was successfully completed earlier this week.
  • ACU Dallas projects – We are creating a specialized site and content in myACU for the new ACU Dallas students, which will go live on April 24th.  Planning is in progress for a new customer relationship management (CRM) solution to support recruiting and admissions.
  • Net revenue project – Computing Services in conjunction with Finance, Financial Aid, and Admissions is beginning a project to gather, analyze, and project data related to revenue as it comes from tuition. This project will help decision makers analyze net revenue and discount amounts/rates for future growth.
  • New Student Orientation – We worked with folks from Admissions, the First-Year Program and Student Life to prepare for the start of NSO registration, which kicked off earlier this week.  Much of the work revolved around changing the name from Passport to New Student Orientation and supporting the increased number of orientation sessions.
  • Sophomore housing registration – We are working with Residence Life Education and Housing to manage sophomore housing registration completely online through functionality in RMS.  This is a significant improvement compared to the process used previously that required manual work.  Sophomores can select roommates, halls and rooms directly in RMS with functionality that is similar to what some major hotel brands offer in their checkin process.  Additionally, sophomores will digitally sign contracts during the sign-up process, which will streamline checkin when they arrive in August.

See March 2015 – Resolved Issues for a more in-depth summary.