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ISC Progress Report for December 2015


Adobe Enterprise License: Early this year, Adobe announced it would move to subscription product licenses. Based on existing usage patterns, the University was on track to pay nearly $1MM more annually for Adobe products. Representatives from Penn Business Services and ISC met with Adobe senior leadership, and were able to negotiate a favorable enterprise licensing model for the University. Stay tuned for rollout details in January.

Campus Firewall: ISC’s Emerging Solutions group coordinated a cross-campus discussion of next-generation firewall governance at Penn. This team made recommendations that both guide strategy for traffic filtering on PennNet, and informed the requirements that were submitted to five enterprise firewall vendors. ISC's Technology Services group will complete paper and lab evaluations, select and procure products, and finalize the network design and initial configuration throughout the remainder of FY16.

Continuous Improvement Program: ISC launched a Continuous Improvement Program to identify and remove obstacles which get in the way of achieving our organization vision and purpose. More developments to follow in January.

IT Financial Management: Our Shared Services group recently presented the cost of administrative systems to the budget office through Apptio. They will follow up in January with a representative view of allocated funding. The Group plans to be able to bill for Penn O365 and endpoint management through Apptio for the January billing cycle. They are also evaluating the incorporation of project, service, and application attributes into Planview to improve the accuracy of tracked costs.

Pennant: Since the successful launch of Pennant Accounts in October, the Next Generation Student Systems project team has been working hard to bring it to steady-state operations, while also turning its attention to what’s coming next: Pennant Records and Pennant Aid. The team held its third town hall meeting in early December and arranged vendor demonstrations of products supporting curriculum planning, degree audit and advising, and space management for classes and exams. This sets the stage for preparation of funding proposals that will allow Penn to kick off the next project phase in the summer. 

PennO365: PennO365 is now a production service! 1,433 accounts representing eight Schools and Centers were moved to PennO365 during the first two weeks of December. Account migrations will resume during the second week of January and continue every week throughout the remainder of the fiscal year. We would like to congratulate the Division of Human Resources for being the first organization to completely move to PennO365! In January, several other organizations will cross the finish line. Stay tuned for more highlights.

PRAGMA: Penn Research Administration Gestalt of Management Applications consists of multiple Penn research projects. The guiding principles for these projects are to reduce regulatory burden on faculty, commit to meeting or exceeding federal regulatory standards, and provide clear and accessible information. The current projects within this program include:

  • Principle Investigator Web Portal
  • Financial and Research Electronic Disclosure (FRED) system
  • Institutional Review Board system enhancements
  • ULAR system enhancements
  • Additional system integration enhancements

Project Management Office: With guidance from its new Director, our PMO is developing a new project framework for enterprise and light projects. The framework will include a process and toolkit to help project teams successfully manage projects in a way that is clear, concise, and consistent. A review of staffing for the PMO is also taking place.

Service & Portfolio Management: ISC's new Service Management Process was rolled out in September 2015. The goal is to provide a consistent approach across ISC, allowing us to make more informed and strategic decisions about our work. All Service owners and managers have participated in workshops, and service content is being integrated into the Service Catalog on our website. ISC staff can access details online.

Staff Moves: In November, ISC successfully moved more than 100 staff members, optimizing our activities in alignment with our new organization structure.

Website: Following the first release of our website earlier this year, we are making significant improvements to content and features, especially in the presentation of ISC’s services. We plan to demo the improvements to campus in January.

 — The ISC Leadership Team