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Winter 2003

The Focus is on “U”

One of the luxuries of having the Integrated System implementation in the rearview mirror is the opportunity to focus on how the implemented system is working for users of the system. As soon as the Finance phase was stabilized, the ISP formed a reports task force to explore ways to make reports more useful and accessible. Focus groups were convened around issues related to the other financial applications. Following the HR/Payroll phase, a reports group was formed for those applications.

This approach to involving end users in evaluating and improving the Integrated System has proven so successful that ISDS has institutionalized it with the creation of a new strategic initiative, headed up by a new Director of System Usability, Rose Chisholm.

Chisholm, the former ISP Reports Lead, has taken the concept of "system usability" to heart. "The full benefits of the Integrated System can only be realized if end users understand how to use it and it helps them do their jobs efficiently and effectively," she says. "I'm committed to working with others to identify and remove roadblocks to the productive and efficient use of the system."

Chisholm has transformed her reports task forces into a multitude of groups tackling hot button issues such as encumbrances, grants reporting, and reconciliation. The original Finance Reports Task Force has morphed into the Finance Usability and System Solutions (FUSS) group, chartered to "...enhance user confidence through improved education, communication, reporting, processes, and procedures." (Click here for a listing of members of the various ISDS task forces.)

"Task force members have invested untold hours into working with ISDS to make the system work well for all users," says Chisholm. "I am enormously privileged to have their expertise and commitment to help me do my job, and the University is equally fortunate since we all benefit from their efforts."

See New and In the Works Projects from the IS Usability Taskforces