Task Force Develops Enhanced Process to Prioritize Business Systems Projects - 11/19/09

A new prioritization process will expand the focus, timing and manner in which business system projects are handled. The procedure was developed by a task force pulled from the Business Systems Advisory Committee (BSAC), the Business Systems Steering Committee (BSSC), members of the Project Management Office (PMO), team leads and others who support business systems, including the System Support Group (SSG) and ITaP.

The team’s primary focus was establishing a process that ensures the initiatives with the greatest benefit to the University receive the highest priorities. In turn, it will maximize the utilization of limited support team resources.

A newly created cost/value matrix helps determine the overall benefit of each project and will be used in the prioritization process. The matrix will provide a consistent basis to determine a more accurate and comparative value across all project requests. As before, mandated projects and those that align with the University’s strategic plan get the highest priority.

Under the new process, a Remedy ticket initiates all systems support requests, including projects. Remedy requests can be sent by emailing or calling the appropriate support team for assistance. Remedy requests that cannot be resolved by a help desk or departmental support personnel will be escalated to the appropriate project support team. Emergency and routine requests are handled within specified guidelines and timeframes. If the team decides the request needs to be handled as a project, it will help the requestor prepare a Request for Service (RFS) Form.

As a part of the RFS process, the team lead will collaborate with the requestor and/or process owner to determine the value and cost of the enhancement being sought. If a single team can complete a high-value, low-cost project without outside assistance, it may pursue the resolution. However, if the resolution involves other areas of support, the project will be escalated to the Project Management Office (PMO). After the PMO determines what resources will be required, it will establish a priority and inform the BSAC and BSSC. Requests that involve significant effort and cost will go to the BSAC and/or BSSC for approval. Requests for which a priority or viability are difficult for the PMO to establish will likely go to the BSAC for determination.

Previously, the BSAC made recommendations to the BSSC for final prioritization of SAP-related and non-SAP work. The projects were prioritized separately and kept on separate lists. The task force determined that similar resources are needed in many cases for SAP and non-SAP initiatives; thus the lists have been merged.

While the new process includes both SAP and non-SAP applications, it also encompasses other BSC applications and computer systems, Web development and any project that uses a significant amount of resources.

The PMO will continuously monitor progress on all prioritized projects, addressing any issues as they arise to ensure timely and accurate completion.