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Follow the Yellow Brick - Implementing EIS
By Cathy Gonzalez, EIS Training/Computing Administration Manager
Similar to Dorothy’s experiences on the yellow brick road in the Wizard of Oz, the implementation of EIS proves to be an adventure in new experiences. Though we have not arrived at the Emerald City yet, expectations are high as project members carefully navigate the path towards successful completion.
Portals and Pioneers
The new UNTS administrative services system known as EIS is divided into two major parts – Learning Solutions and Financials. The two parts are bridged by the EIS component known as the Portal. The Portal makes possible one of the EIS features that the campus community is most excited about, the requirement of a single login ID and password for each user. The Portal also facilitates the self-service features available for students and employees. Learning Solutions and Financials contain specific modules that can be accessed by users depending on the security level the user has been granted.
The first EIS module to go live was the central purchasing component in July 2003. The brave pioneers of this initial go live were the Purchasing/Payment Department staff both at UNT and the Health Science Center in Fort Worth. The UNT and HSC Admissions departments completed their first day of live production in EIS on September 29, 2003. Successful application processing was accomplished by Undergraduate, Graduate, and International Admission staff on the first day of production. The next big announcement for the EIS project came on November 19, 2003, as the Advancement Center went into production in the Contributor Relations module. January 2004 started with a bang for the EIS Project with the Human Resources and Payroll departments converting to production in EIS. This go-live was the first time staff outside of the administrative departments closely involved with the project completed actual production work in EIS. The target audience was departmental timekeepers who were required to use EIS to enter December 2003 timekeeping reports for the first of the year 2004 payroll.
The Next Step
In the Learning Solutions environment, Student Records, Student Financials, and Financial Aid and Scholarship will begin their rollouts in April 2004 with select groups of students. The Student Administration departments plan to be in live production mode for the fall 2004 semester. Summer and early fall registration is being conducted in the legacy system. (A detailed explanation and matrix of the Student Administration migration from legacy to EIS is planned for the next issue of Benchmarks Online.)
Additional modules in the Financials Environment are in development and will be implemented no later than 2005. The remaining modules that will be put into service are e-Procurement, Expenses, Asset Management, Budget, and Grants/Contracts.
We expect to reach the Emerald City in September 2005 when the last module is scheduled for implementation. An upgrade to PeopleSoft Version 8.9 is expected also in calendar year 2005. With a great track record already established this far, UNTS can look forward to more successful go-lives through the remainder of the project.
You can find more information regarding the EIS Project status at http://www.unt.edu/eis/newsite/proj_info.html. Also, see "Introducing EIS – Linking Systems to People" in last month's "Campus Computing News" in Benchmarks Online.
Food for thought: Since Dorothy was actually dreaming in the Wizard of Oz, does this mean that the wicked old lady actually got Toto after all?! Guess we will never know.