Monday, 18 June 2018

Wolverhampton weekly newsletter #26

Weekly Update


  • Dealt with queries about ServiceNow licensing and on the agenda for next week's project board meeting (checking licence number and budget transfers etc)
  • Software2 package training is now scheduled for 30th July - involving Faculty technical staff in training program (with commitment to help with packaging over Summer).
  • Scrum meeting notes from this week's meeting:
    • Agresso leave module now demo'd to User Group.  Positive feedback - system on track to be available from August 1st.
    • Next steps are building dashboard for absence reporting in system, setting system data up so line managers can sign off and approve, and checking individual staff work schedules.
    • Policy will probably change ref leave carry forward rules in 18/19 to allow transition to the new system - proposal is 6 months (versus 2 months).
    • Personal webspace (perswww) is going to be retired from end of month - everyone has a default "mywebs" folder which will be withdrawn - no data will be lost.  Potential for DP breaches is key driver - lots of out of date infomration some of it potentially personal.
    • Digital Capabilities survey extended to 31/7 - recommended that we all participate if we haven't already and cascade within teams.
    • Data Centre access policy is now drafted - ready to circulate for comments as may impact others eg estates and facilities
    • Shadow IT workshops are ongoing to end July
    • Changes will be happening to the sign on process to enable automated password re-set using a mobile phone number (opt in approach).  Will also deliver an upgrade to security (upgrading FIM) and better ability to manage password changing including out of hours.
  • Usual 1-2-1s this week.  Resolved procurement for Modern.Gov and Tableau through software licences budget.
  • Held second IT Health and Safety Committee to review the action plan - a number of actions have taken place to reduce perceived risk.
  • Chaired first IT leadership team meeting - there will be all staff briefing process put in place.
  • Handover meetings arranged with AV supplier and plan in place over next three weeks during staff annual leave.  Work starts Monday in Walsall (one room) and City (two rooms).

Good News

  • Positive meeting with Strategic Planning - they are currently happy with our progress.
  • Positive meetings with new IT Director.
  • No P1's this week.

Friday, 8 June 2018

Wolverhampton weekly newsletter #25

Weekly Update 

  • Prepared interim report on shadow IT workshops for end of week.
  • SOABE/Springfield project Board preparation and meeting on Monday ref IT and AV. Project Board established working group to work through options and make recommendations.
  • Continued with series of "all staff" 1-2-1 meetings during the week.
  • Arranged meeting with Apprenticeship Hub ref process reviews.
  • Attended Deans Advisory Group at Walsall (Arts) and presented proposal for benchmarking exercise which was agreed.  Took away actions regarding ArtsFest, school visits and AV for MK045 (all progressed and reported back).
  • Monthly Trade Union meeting this week - no IT issues to report.
  • Scrum meeting notes from this week's meeting:
    • Interim PA Duties organised.
    • Setting up IT leadership team meetings - 90 mins every 2 weeks. First meeting will be setting up membership and ToR etc
    • Noted that standard PCs will be shipping with SSDs - Agreed to organise positive staff comms about this (investing a bit more in faster and reliable kit).
    • Noted issues about legacy IT web presence - is there an option to bring in a grad intern to help with this?
    • Demo of Agresso solution for planned/unplanned absence to the user reps.
    • Working on annual Faculty software renewals - 2 completed, 2 to go
    • Working on DPA breach process using servicenow to manage the 72 hour time limit for reporting
    • KPMG audit - may also pick up closure of staff accounts (flagged up in GDPR action plan) - work now under way to mitigate
    • Picking up issue of microsites (relates to Greenwich experience).
    • Job advert for replacement Timetabling Project Manager has been advertised.
    • Interviewing Friday for DC Marketing and Comms post
    • Taking a University approach to procuring a project/program support tool (SPG, E&F etc) - need to make sure it can deal with resourcing and modelling requirements
    • CMIS Go infrastructure and application has been installed on schedule (timetabling)
    • Concerns about capacity to deliver Finance interfaces to DLP - escalated to Finance and with project sponsor
    • DLP testing is well under way using a new automated tool.
    • Event on Friday July 6th (SUMO) hold the date
    • Noted upgrades to everyone's email capacity - action to organise positive staff comms (comment that we don't do enough of this when there are major service improvements)
    • Telephone upgrade (ahead of clearing) scheduled for weekend of July 14th
    • Request for Minecraft for SciFest in progress
    • Self-service password reset ready to be launched from June 18th - comms going out this week/next week to different customers affected.  Major service improvement - over 4k servicedesk requests in last year relating to password resets.
    • Finally, BA post has been shortlisted with date to be set early July for interview process.  There has been an excellent response to the support analyst role now being shortlisted.
  • Usual 1-2-1s this week with direct reports.
  • Organised a couple of meetings on "non-standard" software purchase process and dealing with staff IT account closure.  Actions agreed and circulated.  Circulated CAB meeting notes to attendees prior to wider circulation.
  • Completed JISC Digital Capabilities survey - useful instrument encouraging others to participate.

Good News

  • The six connected screens in MC building entrance were connected to new digital signage solution and launched with Faculty of Arts content in time for ArtsFest and Degree Shows.
  • Successfully completed all staff mandatory training course - attempted to print certificates (some were blank - reported back to OD).
  • No P1's this week.

Monday, 28 May 2018

Wolverhampton weekly newsletter #24

Weekly Update.

  • First two "shadow IT" workshops held with Finance/HR and Estates.
  • Organised Panopto working group meeting and circulated action notes.
  • Attended workshop session to kick-off the Office365 business case activity which is now in progress with aim to complete business case by end July for approvals.
  • Further meetings ref DAS GDPR action plan assigning follow-up tasks and timeline.
  • Organised DropBox account meeting to understand current usage within the University.  Current annual recurrent costs are modest however there is also "free" use which is being monitored.
  • No scrum meeting this week.
  • Met with F&G discuss phased transition during July. Next step is to complete outstanding paperwork.
  • Several 1-2-1s this week with direct reports.
  • Attended Agresso Programme Board - significant resourcing issues remain to complete planned activity other than mandatory/compliance related.  Good progress reported on absence management development within Agresso however, raised potential concerns about functionality versus Replicon.
  • Completed on-line GDPR and Fire Safety training this week.

Good News

  • Diesel Generator Fixed ahead of Bank Holiday weekend.
  • Order placed by Estates for UPS system for installation before end July (16/17 capital program).
  • No P1's this week - one MIC escalation early on Thursday morning due to unavailability of network link to Hereford  - resolved quickly when power restored (power had tripped out in comms room).

Sunday, 20 May 2018

Wolverhampton weekly newsletter #23

Weekly Update.


  • Diesel Generator "at risk" - this issue is ongoing for MI Building - replacement standby generator in place and hooked up but requires manual start.  Estates providing daily update on request.
  • Setting up the remaining Shadow IT workshops and the rest of the 1-2-1's with the support team members.  Also held further 1-2-1 meetings during the week as usual with direct reports.
  • Scrum meeting notes from 16/5:
  1. In order to use the Estates Helpdesk system you need to Register first - different username/password required.  Not the same as HR/IT and ServiceNow.
  2. Discussion about the background to Estates Helpdesk system.
  3. It has been agreed that all teaching spaces should be managed/booked centrally through new timetabling approach. This will likely have impact on expectations ref funding of spaces (e.g. AV).
  4. Noted Meeting Management system and decision to pilot/parallel run in September for CMT and Governors.
  5. Big changes may be coming for Adobe licensing next year - no panic though for next 12 months
  6. Shortlisting for the engagement and comms role
  7. Feedback to HR ref shortlisting grid
  8. Web App Developer post not filled

  • Attended the Tribal Account management meeting with Student Registry team - updated on GDPR, HESA Data Futures, Curriculum manager and Dashboards/reporting capability.  Roadmap for product which will be presented at next month's SITS conference - includes new product called Edge.
  • Put together IT budget materials for 18/19.
  • Reviewed the new draft of  the IT Acceptable Use Policy .
  • Completed P1 incident report for recent network/power interruption.
  • Chaired CAB meeting and obtained agreement to proposed approach for standard changes, non-standard changes and emergency changes.  There is a need to clarify DAS business changes process going forward.

Good News

  • SOABE/Springfield - positive meetingref using the UX training and techniques which DAS organised to apply to the project.  We also had a very positive meeting with Estates preparing the IT related strategy for network (local area and wide area) for the Tender
  • No P1's this week.

Monday, 14 May 2018

Wolverhampton weekly newsletter #22

Weekly Update


  • Have been continuing with 1-2-1s meeting all the IT team individually. Some quick-win actions are being progressed already.
  • A number of Shadow IT workshops have been scheduled including Finance and HR, Estates and Facilities, Library, Registry and Student Systems.  I have also accepted an invite from Faculty of Arts to attend the next Dean's Advisory Group ref the proposal to undertake an IT benchmark exercise.
  • Discussed network activity management information which we could put together for the Campus Experience Committee.
  • Discussed various mobile-related activities which were raised through the ServiceNow project (this is one of the three priority areas for the administration team) e.g. lost/broken phones, faulty phones, disposal/re-allocation of phones etc.  Looking to see how we can use ServiceNow to automate jobs and self-service via the portal.
  • Attended very useful supplier meetings with S2 who support Apps Anywhere.
  • Held second ServiceNow Project Board - various actions progressing.  We should have first set of management monthly reports from the system shortly including some trend reporting, and making progress on using system for standard changes.
  • Discussed resource planning across the Digital Campus program as well as the other IT projects that are in progress.  There is a capacity constraint which is not yet explicit so we will put together a program level resource plan as next step.
  • Final meeting of week was a Finance monthly review - a number of follow up actions, however, broadly on track with latest forecast and no nasty surprises.

Good News

  • Timetabling Project Board received positive report on IT risk assessment and endorsed recommendations.

Tuesday, 8 May 2018

Wolverhampton weekly newsletter #21


  • GDPR Action Plan developed and will be turning into a tracker.
  • Making progress with getting the Office365 Business Case activity under way with external support.
  • Discussions taking place about external support for our Windows 10 upgrade project.
  • Health and Safety Committee for IT initiated and first formal meeting held.
  • Contracts reviewed for out of hours support including data sharing agreement and data privacy impact assessment.
  • Further demonstration of Board Packs software solution.
  • Potential income arrangement ref Residences W-Fi provider agreed with Purchasing support - Max dealing with the details.
  • Worked with Planning and BI team regarding a BI schedule going to Senior Management next week.
  • Completed risk assessment for timetabling and with Helen for circulation - risks were not as bad as they first appeared once we started digging - especially the budget risk which appears to have been dealt with.  Lisa running some numbers to confirm.
  • Good meeting with External Relations - quite a few new actions from that to follow up next week.
  • We are reviewing the IT acceptable Use Policy draft - we are hoping to have consulted on that for May 18 deadline.
  • Supported external auditors who have been on-site ahead of the annual finance audit later this year.

Good News
  • No P1 incidents
  • Internal review of Ts and Cs for CRIS project completed and passed to legal.

Monday, 30 April 2018

Wolverhampton weekly newsletter #20

Weekly Update

  • Started a series of 1-2-1 meetings that I have planned on return after Easter with all IT staff - seeing those people first who have taken on new things.  Also usual 1-2-1s with direct reports this week.
  • Met with FSE for a briefing and demonstration of Replicon.  We also called the account  manager for a discussion about enterprise pricing on basis it might be an alternative to Agresso if that is not delivered quickly.
  • Budget forecast meeting follow up ref infrastructure budget.  Identified £27k approx of positive changes.  Identified issue with budget to follow-up.  Budget discussion with Estates about future air con and fuel costs for generators - £10k impact in 17/18 on IT budget.
  • Estates/IT monthly meeting reviewed the DAS activity tracker and marked a number of projects as completed.
  • Completed PCI-DSS review based on NCC audit February 2018 and started to develop this year's action plan together.
  • Met KPMG auditors and started work on data collection processes - this relates to pre-work for the financial accounts audit September.
  • Reviewed the out of hours IT support contract including the data sharing agreement (now with DPO for sign off) and the data impact assessment (also with DPO for review).
  • Worked on the JANET upgrade have now obtained costings.
  • Met with facilities systems and in particular the incident logging system and mobile apps.
  • Held our second Servicenow project board including useful feedback on a review of its reporting capabilities.
  • Attended GDPR working Group.
  • Met up with Dean of Students covering league table performance and recent Faculty Student Council feedback.  Key themes are being extracted for a report based on 3-400 students engaged in process.

Good News

  • No P1 incidents - however dealt with another phishing attempt.
  • GDPR Audit completed and returned.
  • ATwo team members completed a week's PRINCE training
  • One of our team has successfully been admitted to membership of the BCS.
  • Our team is mentoring one of our students who has obtained an internship at JISC.