Getting ready for FirstLink go-live

As the ctcLink project works toward the August 24 go-live date for FirstLink colleges, project manager Jeff Thompson recently reviewed several activities that are underway:

  • Tacoma and Spokane colleges have been heavily involved in Day-in-the-Life activities, with on-site assistance from Ciber and SBCTC staff. This activity is intended to provide end-users with an opportunity to practice their daily activities in the new system and validate that they can perform the key business processes of running the college and serving students. Ongoing support to address system issues during Day-in-the-Life is being provided by the SBCTC Service Desk in Olympia. This provides good practice for colleges and the service desk to prepare for the same support during go-live and beyond. This activity is ongoing as not all of the 20 business processes chosen by the colleges for Day-in-the-Life have been executed yet.
  • A go/no-go decision process is scheduled on or around¬†July 22. The decision will be based on a readiness assessment checklist that project and college staff are monitoring weekly.
  • Plans are underway for plenty of on-campus support for go-live week and beyond. The SBCTC/Ciber project team is working with colleges to identify needs and assign staff to specific locations to provide support for a successful ctcLink launch. On-site support is expected to last up to four weeks depending on how quickly the system starts to stabilize and how well college staff are transitioning to using the new system.
  • In addition, the ERP Support Team in Olympia will provide real-time support through the SBCTC Service Desk. Colleges can log tickets for any issues they encounter and get quick assistance to remedy the problems. Command Centers will also be located at each college district, as well as at SBCTC Bellevue.
  • This mix of on-ground and online support is designed to assist the FirstLink colleges with using the system, resolving issues that arise and provide ongoing guidance.

About ctclinknews

ctcLink is a single, centralized system of online tools for student services and administrative functions for all 34 community and technical colleges in Washington. In the next several years, ctcLink will be implemented on every campus, providing online tools for everything from admissions to graduation. The first three ("FirstLink") colleges came online in August 2015. A wave of 8 more colleges (cleverly named "Wave 1") will switch over to the new ctcLink system in August 2016, followed by Wave 2 in 2017 and Wave 3 in 2018.
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