Office of Information Technology

Project Management Office Dashboard


Welcome to the Office of Information Technology's projects dashboard. Below please find highlights of our current major projects and initiatives. If you have questions about any of our projects, please contact us at helpdesk@american.edu.


Active Projects

Capital Planning and Management Tool

Brief Description

Identify requirements for a tool that will be utilized by the OUA and Facilities to manage facilities and capital management projects.

Who does it affect?

Staff and Faculty

How does it affect you?

This tool will help ensure that capital projects are managed effectively, provide visibility into details of the effort and the finances and provide a consistent methodology for manageing these projects.

Success Measures

The project will identify vendors, complete an RFP, select and evaluate RFP responses and select a vendor. Once selected, the project will manage the procurement and implementation of the tool.

Expected Completion Date

October 2011


 

Informer Rollout Project - Phase 1

Brief Description

Implementation of Entrinsik Informer as a new reporting tool.

Who does it affect?

Students, Faculty, and Staff

How does it affect you?

Entrinsik Informer is a reporting tool which provides access to real-time data from one or more databases with use of an intuitive web interface. Informer also serves as a powerful analysis tool which enables you to filter, graph, and export report results.

Success Measures

Entrinsik Informer will be successfully tested and delivered to the AU community with minimal downtime.

Expected Completion Date

December 2011


 

Datatel UI 4.3 Upgrade Project

Brief Description

The purpose of the Datatel User Interface (UI) 4.3 upgrade is to maintain currency with the current release of the product and vendor supported software. All previous versions of UI are no longer supported by the vendor. The upgrade requires migrating all AU custom software, as well as customizations to Datatel-delivered software, to be compatible with UI 4.3 that introduces the following benefits and fixes:

  • Performance – Significant performance improvements as 60% fewer packets are sent between the PC and the UI server as compared to UI 4.0/4.1.
  • Form Sizing - Better focus management between forms and the rest of the UI.
  • Form Focus Issues - Window and form area resizing and zooming support.
  • Form Printing - The ability to directly print Colleague forms.
  • Exporting Support - Spreadsheet exporting support for window data.
  • Picture Support - See staff and student pictures from within Colleague's new person context card.
  • Easier Navigation - Work with several people across forms easily.
  • Favorites - Save forms, as well as people, as "favorites."
  • Forget all those mnemonics – Search on a keyword or description of what the form does.
  • Improved Search Capability – Search on multiple forms, across Colleague applications.
  • Mapping - Use Yahoo's mapping tools to see geographic trends.

Who does it affect?

Staff

How does it affect you?

This upgrade will streamline the user experience, improve performance, and introduce new helpful features to enhance productivity. All vendor support for UI Desktop ended in June 2011 and support for UI 4.1 ends in September 2011. All users are encouraged to use UI Web to ease transition to the new UI 4.3.

Success Measures

  • Continuing adoption of the new UI.
  • Successful conversion of all AU custom programs to be compatible with the new UI.
  • The upgrade is performed with minimum downtime.
  • Thorough testing is done to minimize any potential errors or issues.
  • User Acceptance Testing (UAT) is completed.

Expected Completion Date

December 2011


 

Cayuse 424 Pre-Awards Grant Management System

Brief Description

Implementation of an electronic Grant Proposal Management System, Cayuse424.

Who does it affect?

Staff and Faculty

How does it affect you?

AU’s Research Infrastructure Task Force identified a very important need to implement a new enterprise research grants management system, in direct support of AU’s Strategic Plan to expand faculty and student research support and provide advancements in research technology and infrastructure.

Success Measures

Adoption of the Cayuse424 system by Faculty and Staff, replacing the current manual paper and multi-system processes.

Expected Completion Date

January 2012


 

Learning Management Performance Management, & Compensation Management Systems

Brief Description

Implementation of Plateau/SuccessFactors applications for the Learning Management, Performance Management, and Compensation Management.

Who does it affect?

Full-Time Staff

How does it affect you?

Integrated solutions which allow for development of learning plan, course registration, and course history and tracking/entry of PMPs.

Success Measures

Launch of HR's revised PMP for 2012 annual performance management cycle and retirement of existing domino application for course registration and Notes data for PMPs.

Expected Completion Date

September 2012


 
Screenshot of virtual tour

Virtual Student Service Program (Phase 1)

Brief Description

Multiple Projects are included to help students enhance their experience during business transactions.

Who does it affect?

Student, Faculty, and Staff

How does it affect you?

The program will streamline and enhance student experience during business transitions.

Success Measures

  • The various projects are successfully implemented and integrated.
  • Students are happy with the increased functionality of the portal.
  • The business transaction system has reached 80% virtual and 20% manual.
  • Help Desk tickets are reduced for business transaction related issues.

Expected Completion Date

December 2012


 
Document Imaging

Document Imaging System for the University - Phase 1

Brief Description

The purpose of this project is to review and select an enterprise document imaging systems that meets AU's imaging needs, integrates with our ERP system, and helps streamline current business processes using document imaging, workflows, electronic approvals and signatures, and other key functions to improve efficiency and productivity. Initial implementations will include Office of Enrollment, Financial Aid, and Accounts Payable.

Who does it affect?

Students, Faculty, and Staff

How does it affect you?

The system will allow documents, such as invoices, student transcripts, and financial aid documents, to be scanned, indexed, stored in a digital format in a central repository. This will help minimize or eliminate the need to print or send files as attachments in emails for review or approval as well as allow users to retrieve documents quickly and efficiently.

Success Measures

A vendor and product are selected and the document imaging system is implemented successfully.

Expected Completion Date

December 2012


 

Recently Completed Projects

Business Intelligence Dashboard

MicroStrategy Implementation

Brief Description

The purpose of this project is to install and configure AU's new Business Intelligence Reporting Tool, MicroStrategy, and deploy the first reporting project: AU’s Executive Dashboards.

Who does it affect?

Faculty and Staff

How does it affect you?

A Business Intelligence Reporting Tool can provide AU with historical, current and predictive views of its operations. Common functions of a BI Tool include reporting, online analytical processing (OLAP), data mining, process mining, business performance management, benchmarking, text mining and predictive analytics. With a BI reporting tool one can transform operational data into actionable information: AU offices will be able to better evaluate their own productivity, thus leading to a better quality of service to faculty, students, and the community. The Executive Dashboards take advantage of the ability to view data from many sources at the same time in one place; they provide views into AU’s Key Performance Indicators (KPI’s) for the University’s top executives; KPI’s include data on Enrollment, Student Population and Demographics, Admissions, Endowment and Financials.

Success Measures

Executive Dashboards are available to AU’s top executives. Additional BI Reporting Capabilities is available across the University (Grants, Admissions, Development, etc.).

Expected Completion Date

August 2010


 
Digital Signage

Four Winds Digital Signage Expansion with Virtual Networking

Brief Description

This project enhanced communication with the AU community by implementing 31 new flat-panel monitors across campus in the first phase of the project. The infrastructure was modified to accommodate the new monitors to broadcast campus communications. Additional installations were expected in the summer of 2011.

Who does it affect?

Students, Faculty, Staff, and Campus Visitors

How does it affect you?

The digital signage enhances AU's ability to communicate effectively with our students and other members of the community. The messages deployed and shown on the monitors are designed to increase awareness and participation in campus activities. In addition, the monitors can be used to disseminate general campus information and emergency messages.

Success Measures

All monitors are installed at the desired locations. They are connected to the AU network infrastructure and are managed via remote access to a central server and to the networked devices by staff members in the various locations where the monitors are installed.

Expected Completion Date

September 2010


 

Project Management Training Course

Brief Description

The Project Management Office has developed a project management training course for the AU staff across campus involved in the implementation and deployment of IT projects.

Who does it affect?

Staff

How does it affect you?

By developing a project management training course, we will improve staff efficiency and productivity, as well as project delivery times and collaboration among various departments, helping us to enhance our level of service to students, faculty, and staff.

Success Measures

Training delivered successfully with feedback from customer surveys.

Expected Completion Date

October 2010


 

Degree Audit/eAdvising Assessment and Implementation

Brief Description

Feasibility Assessment of Datatel Degree Audit to replace our current package DARS. This will allow us to enhance and expand the use of Datatel's advising functions, including course planning and e-advising.

Who does it affect?

Students, Faculty, and Staff

How does it affect you?

The new Degree Audit allows students to examine the requirements for their majors in a clearer, more comprehensive manner than the previous DARS report with a display including course titles, GPA and credit counts, and a list of remaining courses needed for graduation.

Success Measures

Colleague Degree Audit is implemented with minimal downtime. Successful and thorough testing to help minimize errors.

Expected Completion Date

November 2010


 
blog

Blog Tool Selection and Implementation Project

Brief Description

The Office of Campus Life spear-headed the selection, customization, and implementation of an externally-hosted application to add blogging to the communications and promotional tools available to campus organizations.

Who does it affect?

Students, Faculty, and Staff

How does it affect you?

Members of AU community and the public can check out the blogs and find out interested topics, including sustainability, the Career Center and others. Anyone can join blog's community and participate in the discussions.

Success Measures

The new pilot blogs are introduced to the public and attracted a number of campus.

Expected Completion Date

December 2010


American University launches new Web 2.0 american.edu site.

(Photo: Jeff Watts)

CommonSpot 5.1.1 Upgrade Project

Brief Description:

The CommonSpot upgrade to version 5.1.1 will brings us in compliance with the current supported version of the software and is required for the next major upgrade with the release of CommonSpot 6.0 planned for later this year.

Who does it affect?

Staff

How does it affect you?

This upgrade has a minimal impact to our customizations and has little or no impact on the user community. With this upgrade, the users will experience better website performance. This upgrade includes the following new features and fixes:

  • Better style handling in Firefox 3.6 and overall Rich Text Editor support.
  • FireFox 3.6 better style handling and overall RTE support.
  • Style List option for formatted textblocks within Custom Elements.
  • Local styles can now be applied.
  • Simple forms can be rendered programmatically rather than on a page through the UI.
  • A new application programming interface (API), or hook, in this release enables CommonSpot Administrators to perform certain file actions programmatically.
  • Support for mobile rendering.
  • With e-mail notification and workflow properly enabled, approvers now receive e-mail notification.
  • Caching and Performance Improvements.
  • Custom Element Improvements.
  • Datasheet letter filtering for multi-page results now works as expected.
  • For browsers that don't support the rich text editor, CommonSpot now renders a Simple Text Block in place of the rich text editor for Simple Forms.

Success Measures:

The following are the success measures for this project:

  • The upgrade is performed with minimum downtime.
  • Thorough testing is done to minimize any potential errors or issues User Acceptance Testing (UAT) is completed.
  • The content management software is supported by the vendor.

Expected Completion Date:

December 2010

Laptop with Chains

Laptop Encryption - Phase 1

Brief Description

The purpose of this project is to encrypt AU-owned laptops and provide better data protection.

Who does it affect?

Students, Faculty, and Staff

How does it affect you?

The implementation of this encryption allows the Office of Information Technology to better protect American University student, staff, and faculty’s private data.

Success Measures

Implementation was completed providing the ability for users to perform their own incryption, minmal disruption to users after encryption.

Expected Completion Date

December 2010


 
OIT Help Desk Analyst

Photo by Jeff Watts

iSupport 9 Implementation

Brief Description

The purpose of this project is to replace the Domino based c.Support 2007 system and transition to the new iSupport 9 for Windows systems. It involves creating a virtual server, installing iSupport 9, configuring the system, testing, developing a plan to transition open tickets, and modifying existing warehouse views. The project will combine the OIT, Public Safety, and AU Central instances into a single unified system that will increase collaboration among the three offices, standardize processes, and minimize resources needed to maintain the system.

Who does it affect?

Students, Faculty, and Staff

How does it affect you?

The update will increase our capabilities by using the most current virtual servers, allowing us to better serve the students, faculty and staff through IT Help Desk tickets.

Success Measures

The upgrade is completed and implemented successfully.

Expected Completion Date

January 2011


 

AU's new Admissions Green Room offers group information sessions and tours at 10 a.m. and 2 p.m., Monday through Friday. (Photo: Jeff Watts)

Welcome Center Technology Tools Project

Brief Description

The purpose of this project is to implement technology for the new Welcome Center to improve the AU experience for prospective students.

Who does it affect?

Students and Faculty

How does it affect you?

The overall project was undertaken to increase interest in attending AU by improving the experience prospective students and their parents had while visiting the campus. The technology portion included the installation of a custom-designed state of the art audio-visual system and content (films and PowerPoint presentations) to augment the presentations of Admissions office staff. In addition, the design included input from faculty to ensure that the implemented technology was also appropriate for academic purposes.

Success Measures

New audio-visual systems are installed and working as designed.

Expected Completion Date

February 2011


MyAU Portal Screenshot

Active Campus Portal - Phase 1

Brief Description

AU's new portal utilizes Datatel's Active Campus Portal product, built upon Microsoft SharePoint. The primary goal of phase one of the portal implementation was to replace the existing functionality provided by the legacy portal, while also rolling out some of the Sharepoint functionality.

Who does it affect?

Students, Faculty, Staff, Parents, and Alumni

How does it affect you?

Every portal user was migrated from the old portal to the new portal over a several month period, using a soft rollout approach that allowed both portals to be available concurrently for a period of time.

Success Measures

New portal is developed with minimal errors during rollout, quick adoption, minimal access issues.

Expected Completion Date

March 2011


 
Staff Member Using BlackBerry

Campus Voice Mail Upgrade – Integrated Messaging Project

Brief Description

The purpose of this project is to switch AU to a new integrated voicemail system from Avaya that provides for unified messaging for voicemail, e-mail, and fax.

Who does it affect?

Faculty and Staff

How does it affect you?

Over 3,000 faculty and staff with AU issued landlines are now able to comment, forward, and file their voice messages online. By switching to this new system, faculty and staff are better able to keep track of their voicemails on the go, and can therefore ensure a quicker response.

Success Measures

New unified messaging system is implemented. Phone menus are converted and migrated over to the new system.

Expected Completion Date

May 2011


Next Generation NAC - Phase 1

Brief Description

The purpose of this project is to implement a network access control platform (NAC) that provides increased security for both the wireless and wired networks.

Who does it affect?

All users accessing the network

How does it affect you?

A new NAC on a periodic basis will provide higher security for both the wireless and wired networks. Every user will log into a new NAC on a periodic basis for posture assessment and remediation (if necessary).

Success Measures

Access and remediation are improved with minimal disruption.

Expected Completion Date

August 2011


 

Oracle Upgrade and Platform Migrations

Brief Description

Upgrade or move to another database environment to replace the old R25 and several portal applications which is no longer supported by Oracle 9i.

Who does it affect?

Staff

How does it affect you?

A new NAC on a periodical basis will provide higher security for both the wireless and wired networks. Every user will log into a new NAC on a periodical basis for posture assessment and remediation (if necessary).

Success Measures

All databases will be in compliance for Oracle and the potential for security breaches due to the old Oracle version will be closed.

Expected Completion Date

Data Warehouse completed in December 2010. Portal and R25 completed in August 2011.


 
Signed Check

Research Grants Reporting

Brief Description

Provides insight and visibility to our Faculty and Staff on the financial status of their Research Grants Projects through web based reports through our BI Reporting Tool.

Who does it affect?

Faculty and Staff

How does it affect you?

AU’s Research Infrastructure Task Force identified, as an important and immediate priority, the ability to access information and reports more easily and intuitively from AU’s ERP System’s (Datatel’s Colleague) accounting and budget data.

Success Measures

Adoption of the reports by AU’s research grants population.

Expected Completion Date

August 2011


 
Outdoor AU Wireless Network Users

Wireless Network Upgrade

Brief Description

This project involves replacement of AU’s legacy wireless network (EagelNet) with the latest in Wifi Technology (eaglesecure).

Who does it affect?

Students, Faculty, Staff, Visitors, and Guests

How does it affect you?

With over 650 new access points and increased bandwidth, eaglesecure allows for quicker browsing at more locations while also providing greater security to all users. All American University buildings, including those off campus, and open areas such as the Quad, are equipped with eaglesecure leverages the 802.11n wireless technology, which delivers up to 300 Mbps of link speed for Wi-Fi radios compared to 54 Mbps with legacy 802.11a/b/g. This means increased bandwidth for end user and enterprise business applications.

Success Measures

  • Delivery of eaglesecure wireless service to 100% of AU’s locations with better user experience.
  • 100% decommissioning of legacy EagleNet WiFi.
  • Reduced resources needed for support and maintenance.

Expected Completion Date

August 2011


 
Blackboard Logo

Blackboard Stablization Project

Brief Description

Strengthen Blackboard services and support to the AU Community.

Who does it affect?

Students, Staff, and Faculty

How does it affect you?

AU’s Blackboard user community will receive 24 x 7 support through a combination of CTRL, OIT and 3rd Party support groups. OIT continues to implement the latest Blackboard building blocks, extending the Blackboard learning experience into areas such as McGraw-Hill’s learning portal, iTunes and many more to come. Support for information transfers from our ERP (Datatel’s Colleague) is also being strengthened, providing teaching faculty and students a more stable platform.

Success Measures

Teaching/learning experience improved; increased customer survey satisfaction ratings.

Expected Completion Date

August 2011