"It's going to be terrific!"
1 is an important date to mark on your calendar, when U.Va. switches
to the new integrated systems from Oracle that will standardize
and streamline computerized procedures University-wide. Hundreds
of U.Va. employees have been undergoing training to use the new
be a big change overnight we'll shut down the old system
and turn on the new one," said Carole Horwitz, ISP
communications manager. The currently used CAPPS (Computerized
Accounts Payable Purchasing System) was going to be kept in place
for a year as a backup, but now the plan is to close down CAPPS
need to have a strong support network in place for the transition,"
That support network consists of about 200 employees designated
as ISP "Subject Matter Experts." They have been receiving
extensive training and testing the applications, as well as the
integration of different parts of the system. They will share
their expertise with people in their divisions seeking help with
who will use the new system
has undergone "overview and navigation" training, in
which they've practiced using a copy of the Oracle database.
system is set up so that people have some of 16 possible "responsibilities,"
tasks they're authorized to perform within it. "When
you enter a password, the system knows what your responsibilities
are a menu comes up [showing them]," Horwitz said.
Subject Matter Experts (good name for a band?) expressed enthusiasm
for the new system.
going to be terrific!" said Stella Loftin, assistant director
of financial management in the housing division, who has worked
at U.Va. for 30 years. "There's a lot of information we'll
be able to access
we can check things ourselves without having to call someone."
employees said they liked the fact that, with Oracle, information
that has been entered is immediately available, without having
to be re-entered by a central office.
much more flexible than the current accounting system," said
Bobbie McClemmens, business manager at parking and transportation.
"When a cash benefit credit is entered into the system, it's
Willis, an accountant in the provost's office, concurred. "It's
much better than the system we have now. You can put a lot more
information into it and get a lot more out of it. You don't need
to use Excel spreadsheets, etc."
use less paper because this system will hold anything we put in
it," Willis said. "We're a paper-driven university and
this might ease that up, save a few trees."
system's appearance also garnered rave reviews.
will be familiar to anyone who has surfed the Web," allowing
users to open several screens at once, Loftin noted. "Younger
folks won't bat an eyelash at it."
uniform look and feel should also be a boon to other employees.
"The way it is now, to put in an LPO number, you go to a
program that looks a certain way.
to pay someone you go into another program that looks different,
and you have to remember which program is case-sensitive and which
isn't," she said.
new employees, or current ones who've changed departments, won't
have to learn several systems. "It makes you an employee
of the institution," Horwitz said.
praised the new system's reporting abilities: "It will be
much easier to generate a report in the fashion that you'd want
conceded that some employees have reservations about the switchover,
worrying there might not be enough support. "But they're
working on that," she countered. "There'll be a
contact person for ISP in every department, as well as help desks.
will take some adjusting
there are a lot of codes, letters and numbers to look up, but
once people get used to it, they'll be grateful," she said.
more information, see ISP's Web site at http://www.virginia.edu/isp/index.html.