#DUG12 Herding Cats (Literally)

**** Please remember – the opinions are MY Own and I am tying During the presentation so please excuse any typos (autocorrect) and any spelling / grammar error – I will try to indicate when I am putting my own (personal comments)

Presenting: Christopher Jones, Berklee College of Music – presentation put together by the VP of IT
  • Presentation using PREZI … (lots of people didn’t like the SPIN-Y-thing.. makes people dizzy)
  • What is meant by “Heading Cats (Literally)” – (LOVE the Herding CAT video… one of the BEST videos out there… I Love it – what a great start – SuperBowl ad from a few years ago)
  • Berklee College of Music – 2011 esparanza spalding – Jazz / Rock & Roll School – honorary doctorate to David Bowie – Vision: Berklee will be the world’s leading institute of contemporary music. Attracting diverse and talented students passionate about careers in music, we will offer (slide change)
    • about 4,000 students – Boston’s Back Bay near Fenway Park
  • IT Dept – 50-60 staff
    • CATS manage the software so lots of hacking of their software so the need for a big staff – lots of customization (that IS their culture) – create Art thinking
    • Their MASCOT is actually a Cat 
  • Why Bother?  Can’t we just muddle through?  So many projects, so little time… budget?  What budget?  The times they are a changin’ 
  • there was a desire to change from a HUGE cue of things to do but only a few things were actually getting done to the opposite
  • How to get organized to actually get through what they needed to do
    • Looked at the Datatel roadmap for projects plus the college’s Strategic Direction (2009-2012) = took everything on the wheel and the things that Datatel has or is rolling out and then color coded but not effective
    • Next step was to write a song: first note: collecting what each areas needs were & a list of proposals then went through the list & looks strategically at what BIG things have to get done / second note: input of the strategy (circle – wheel object) / third note: Division by Division and look at what they wanted to do based on Strategic Initiatives benefitted.. actual serious analysis on how they related to each other and each division in relationship with that strategic plan / Fourth Note: Student / Fifth Note: Cloud computer:  / Sixth Note: a big technology strategic plan  (most of the IT dept did not read)
    • Last approach: boil it down with colors & concise phrases: DATA at the center then planning around the whole thing with People / Process / Tools wrapped around the center
      • Plan: Pick the right systems: Establish a formal process for the selection of enterprise systems  / Do the right projects (Establish the requirement that the CTC must approve project (slide change) including a selection committee / request for proposal (slide change) – worked with five different divisions – working plans from the proposals
      • Data: Make the data right (design & execute a comprehensive plan to clean and maintain all major CORE data / Keep the Data right
      • Process: Work Smarter (Formalize a program of ongoing audits of system use, functionality, vulnerabilities / Implement specific modules in order to streamline processes and increase efficacy, efficiency and accuracy) – Use Audit very good process and worthwhile money spent .. highlights work to be done 
      • People: The Right People doing the Right Job (define technology skill-sets and responsibilities in college job descriptions, and provide managers with the tools to train and evaluate the staff in these positions.  Asses and align staffing to areas of greatest need and create new positions where needed to ensure that the college is staffed at the level required (slide change) – Right People Right Role – the NEW IT with just two silos
      • Tools: Adopt Modern tools that meet college needs (engage in multi-year program to replace / add technology that will most contribute to people’s ability to access and use college info systems (slide change) – (still intensely complicated lists – wow)
    • SO – It’s not rocket surgery
      • this can be done from the middle
      • project inventory is a key component
      • keep process simple – there was a lot of complicated stuff but it was five rows / five terms / brief sentences
      • key players
      • link sources and themes
      • pictures
      • it takes leadership (yours and theirs)
    • Their portal is very heavily utilized / also rolled out all sorts of other projects including google mail / google groups / google calendar 

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