Room reservation software upgrade to EMS Campus

Guest author, Isabel Jordan, wrote for us about a recent upgrade to the Event Management System….

HMC’s reservation software, Event Management System (EMS), has been upgraded to the Campus 3.0 version. Virtual EMS was only changed in appearance but not use. There has been some feedback from Mac users who say they are having difficulty viewing Virtual EMS. The solution has been to use Google Chrome
as the browser rather than Mozilla Firefox.

Currently, CIS and the Facilities & Maintenance team are working together to
get the Integrated Authentication module up and running. This module will
integrate EMS with the directory server so that one can log in to EMS with
the same account log in/password that is used to log in to one’s computer
(HMC credentials).  There are over 600 users who have accounts in EMS so we
are trying to figure out the most efficient way to make this happen.

Moving forward the plan is to install an Academic Planning Module that will
assist the Registrar’s office to connect the academic schedule from CX to
EMS. Currently the 5C registrars are being trained to learn the
collaboration between CX and EMS.

Digital Signage

Over the past several months, a cross-functional Digital Signage project team comprised of members from Dining Services, F&M and CIS met regularly to coordinate efforts for the deployment of digital signs in Hoch-Shanahan Dining Commons. The signs are intended to improve usability of the space through technology. As a result of this wonderful teamwork, six beautiful digital signs have been installed; two in the serving area, two at the edges of the dining area, and two near the entrance of the meeting rooms. The signs have been deployed with FourWinds software, an application procured and provided via CUC, which is also used at the Honnold/Mudd Library, some of the other Claremont Colleges, and the new CUC ACC building. Our HMC digital sign deployments have been configured to present instant updates of dining menu information and meeting room schedules via EMS.

The Digital Signage project was undertaken as a joint project between CIS and Dining Services, in which Miguel Ruvalcaba led a team made up of staff from both areas. This excursion into matrix management  was not without its detours and bumps. We learned a lot and identified a need for general agreement on approaches to project management. Partly as a result of this experience, BAO and CIS staff will be attending a jointly funded two-day “project management for non-project managers” class in February.

During the second phase of the project, CIS came to learn of Engineering’s interest in deploying digital signs, which allowed collaboration with Engineering for installation of their digital sign using the same FourWinds software within a standardized deployment of systems and network devices. This sign can be seen in the Engineering lab on the third floor of the Parsons building. We have also deployed digital signs on the first and fifth floors of the Sprague building, and are working on developing content for those signs.

If you have an interest in installing digital signs in your department or area, please send a request to the helpdesk@hmc.edu.

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Email & Calendar Project Update

The Email and Calendar Team is focused on increasing the pace of progress on a number of activities. Currently, these activities include:

Decommissioning of the Google Team Edition domain where approximately 130 HMC staff, faculty and students have accounts, created more than three years ago, to allow for collaboration of content and sharing of documents. Eliminating this domain will simplify our new Google Apps for Education deployment by allowing the from-address currently shown to recipients of email messages sent from the Google Apps domain to exclude the “g” in username@g.hmc.edu, will be shown as username@hmc.edu.
Target for shutdown of Google Apps Team Edition is end of January.

Creation of the MS Office365 tenancy, and creation of CIS MT and USG accounts to begin the first steps in learning about user provisioning and functions or features of this email and calendar cloud service. Because this is a very new offering for Microsoft, the licensing and activation process has taken 10 weeks. In parallel to the processing of licenses, the team was able to work with MS toward completing the Technical Review and Deployment Readiness Tool.
Target for CIS MT and USG account creation is first week of February.

Migrations of faculty email accounts from mailbox-01, Odin, and Thuban mail systems continue. These migrations have been completed via high-touch, in-person support from the CIS User Support Group. Our current count is (12) faculty members migrated in the months of October, November and December. In November, the project team was able to meet with technology representatives from Computer Science and Math to discuss mail routing, and confirm that the new cloud provided services would not impact mail flow to department mail servers.
Target for mailbox-01 shutdown of email service for faculty is March.

Investigation of calendaring functions available within Google Apps, which includes administration of group calendars and import of common campus calendars. Once the Office365 service is operating, the team will shift to integration issues between the two clouds, in addition to calendaring clients and connectors.
Target for understanding and documenting integration issues is end of February.

Ongoing development and socialization of project documentation, which includes standard practices for creating general email accounts i.e. physics@hmc.edu, mail list management currently provided via majordomo, user provisioning, email alias standards, and global address list management across both cloud services.

Tracking of function or feature inquiries related to email, calendar and other compatible collaboration applications. For each inquiry, the team determines if a reasonable solution is available with existing tools or by moderate process changes, allowing the item to be addressed at a later project phase or if the inquiry indicates a significant change to email communications or calendaring which would require significant technical accommodations or additional resources, causing the team to escalate the issue for decisions on project scope changes. These inquiries should be emailed to helpdesk@hmc.edu for tracking and communications via a ticket with the project team.

The team will continue to post project update items to the site tracking our activities. website (on Google Sites)