1. ITSS Technical Forum: Tuesday, December 12
The December ITSS Technical Forum will be held Tuesday, December 12 from 1:30 - 3:30 in Turing Auditorium.
1. List Servers -- Tim Torgenrud 2. Common Reporting Environment -- Dennis Rayer and Mike Peters 3. Corporate Presentation by IMM -- Introduced by Bea Koodziej
IMM is a small company who will be providing a demo of their database development and production/performance product. The product is specifically designed for database applications developed in Sybase AND Oracle.
Ideas for future ITSS Technical Briefings should be sent to Sarah Imbach (sbrim@leland, 3-4076).
2. 1996 ITSS Forum Dates
Mark your calendars with the dates below for the 1996 ITSS Forums. All forums will be held in Fairchild Auditorium, 8:30 - 10:30.
3. Training Data Base Session for Lab Safety Partners
On December 13, Phyllis Olrich will be conducting a training session for approximately 12 Lab Safety Partners on the features of two Prism files: Training Schedule and Training People. The Partners are from various departments including the School of Medicine and the School of Engineering. The purpose of the training is to enable Lab Safety Partners to keep accurate records of people who have taken certain Environmental Health & Safety classes in order to be in compliance with federal regulations.
The ITSS Instructional Program arranged for changes to the Training Schedule and People files so that EH&S could use that system to track this important area of compliance for the University. Jerry Lathrop in Application Support and Michael Jay Roberts made the changes to the Prism files.
4. BuyPay Quick Wins
The first weekend in December was a very exciting one for Application Support, as we installed code supporting four "Quick Wins" for the BuyPay team. Work on all of these systems was started during the spring and summer. These projects represent the first rollouts to the Stanford community of some of the business process re-engineering envisioned by the team.
On Dec 4, the new Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) system for the University began useful work, as the first piece of this new system began electronically receiving invoices from Amersham Corp. On Monday we processed 26 invoices and on Tuesday another 22. We expect to process about 1500 airbills from Federal Express by the end of the week.
The Electronic Data Interchange system uses a client-server package from Premonos, a leading vendor in EDI. The package runs on a Unix server. Data received is FTP'd to the SNAP Accounts Payable system, where the transactions are added automatically. As we add vendors, this new process should considerably lessen the workload in Accounts Payable. The project team members were John Murphy and Christopher Bekins from BuyPay, Nile Jones from Accounts Payable, and Jim Hagan and Martha Tsien from Application Support. The project received valuable assistance from Jim Stosick and Laura Shrager in OSS.
The first Stanford purchasing cards (Master Cards from First Chicago National Bank) were distributed this week, and the cardholders have been shopping! The individual transactions are transmitted daily to Stanford and are FTP'd to Forsythe and loaded into the files of the Prism PCard Transactions application. Cardholders (or their designees) verify their transactions on-line, routing them for signature authority as necessary. At the end of the month, the verified transactions enter the accounting system and appear on monthly statements, and an invoice is generated for Stanford to pay.
The system uses some of the new Spires Interoperability features, namely external files and Data Move. The folks involved were John Murphy and Eva Uliana from the BuyPay team, and Sharon Seliga, Emma Vavra, Charles Stewart, Jim Ryerson, Mary Dautricourt, Anh Tran, Bill Kiefer, and Michael Puff from ITSS.
Local Certification of SNAP Checks transactions
Many expense reports entered into the SNAP Checks system are now able to be certified locally, rather than having to be sent to Travel and Reimbursement for final verification. This should make it possible for travelers and others incurring expenses to be reimbursed much more quickly than was previously possible.
In order to effect this change, modifications were made to the SNAP Checks process for both originators and the new transaction "certifiers". The certifiers also had the opportunity to use a new, online, self-paced tutorial to test their knowledge and understanding of the certification rules, prior to the system going live. The business rules controlling the certifiability of the transactions have been built into user-changeable data tables; the application itself is independent of the specific rules.
Project team members are: Beverly Swanson, BuyPay team, Sherry Murphy, Travel & Reimbursement, Donna Egge, Suzanne Mills, and Elaine Moise, Application Support, and Michael Roberts, contractor.
Campus Wide Agreements
Preliminary changes have been made to the Departmental Information screen in SNAP Purchasing, and to the SNAP User profile, to make it possible to enter more precise delivery information. This improved information will make desktop delivery of goods possible when the new Campus Wide Agreements are rolled out to the Stanford community in Winter quarter.
Staff who participated in this first phase of the Campus Wide agreements project were: Kathleen Fardeen and Rich Baldwin, BuyPay team, and Suzanne Mills and Elaine Moise, Application Support.
5. Announcement of Pending Changes in Central Stores Operations
Sue Webert of Procurement sent out a memo this week which described the results of a Procurement Department analysis which examined Central Stores (Stores) to determine whether it was meeting the needs of the campus at the lowest possible costs while providing the highest possible service levels.
Like other service centers on campus (ITSS), Stores is a self sustaining operation and must recover all of its operating costs. Sue advised that the Stores operation has been reviewed, particularly in conjunction with the BuyPay reengineering project, and it has been decided to restructure and downsize Stores. The restructuring will begin in March, l996.
The text of Sue's full memo.
6. Tree-Savers Club Growing Fast
The new Administrative Guide Tree-Savers Club is growing like a healthy forest. Membership in the club is limited to Administrative Guide holders who have volunteered to switch from receiving paper Admin Guide updates to using the online version in Portfolio as their reference source. Started in November, the club already has 100 members, including 5 of the 24 Admin Guide holders in ITSS. To join, send e-mail to Veronique Hehl at as.mai@forsythe.
7. Stanford Receives Honorable Mention Award at CAUSE
Stanford received an honorable mention among the 1995 winners of the CAUSE Award for Excellence in Campus Networking. Below is the text which accompanied the award:
"Stanford was a pioneer in implementing a campuswide data communication network and in realizing the importance of a centrally planned network. By incorporating assessments of past years and tactical plans into its long-range planning process, the University's planning documents for its network are flexible and responsive to changing needs. Stanford's network provides pervasive connectivity for faculty, students, and staff both on- and off-campus. To meet the advanced and complex needs of its researchers, the Stanford network provides impressive research tools, links writers and readers of scholarly research, and fosters collaborative work among scholars around the world. The network has brought innovation to the classroom, using technology to simulate realism in medical school coursework, for example, and to create a virtual classroom to give off-campus students access to academic programs. Stanford has been a leader in developng support models for residence hall computing, and students benefit from many special network services, from user support and training to online student service functions and administrative tasks. In addition, several innovative programs, including Web-based applications and Internet browsers, have been developed at Stanford, and many of these are shared with the academic community through the University's extensive community and global outreach efforts."
Congratulations to the DCCS staff who are daily responsible for SUNet, which is so critical to enabling the University's mission.
8. ITSS Employment Opportunities:
In Application Integration and Assembly:
University Manager IV (#J951682-KCH). Salary range: C10, $5821-7297. Exempt. Full job description.
This position reports to the Chief Information Officer and directs the activities of the Application Assembly & Integration (AAI) operating unit. The mission of AAI is to support University operating units and process project teams in the definition of new systems' business requirements and identification of enabling technologies; to support vendor application package and component evaluation and selection processes; to assemble, develop, install, and integrate key enterprise applications and their components.
9. ITSS Staff: Comings, Goings, and Changes
Paul Goldstein has moved to a new position in the Data Administration department. Paul is now Manager of Information Access, reporting to Richard Beal. Nona Kuhlman and Mary Wenzel report to Paul. The team will be focusing on information access query and reporting tools and techniques to make it easier for Stanford faculty, students and staff to get the information they need. Paul will also continue to work with the Budget AIS project team through the month of December helping to rollout the Pillar reporting tool.
10. ITSS People News
Ced Bennett "retires" as CAUSE Management Institute Director
At the recent CAUSE Conference held in New Orleans, Ced Bennett was publically honored before the entire assembly of conferees for his years of service in the creation of, and the direction of, the highly successful CAUSE Management Institute. In 1989, the CAUSE Board of Directors asked Ced to head up the effort to create the Institute and to lead it; in June 1990, the first very successful session with 48 participants and 5 faculty members was held in Boulder, Colorado. The Institute now offers two week-long programs multiple times a year, one oriented toward managers and the other toward directors; nearly 500 participants from over 200 institutions world-wide have attended since that original 1990 session was held. Although no longer the director of the program, Ced will continue to function as a faculty member.
At a subsequent reception during the conference with more than 50 "institute alumni" attending, Ced was named "Institute Dean Emeritus" and presented with an 'emeri-tie' (which he has been proudly wearing here at Stanford) and a briefcase to replace the VERY tattered one he has been known to carry.