Tuesday, 28 October 2008

Structures and Roles

Over the last week the project has been pulling together information around the project team, formalising roles and the structure of the project. This should make it clear to the project team how we all fit together. These documents are going to go into our respository and given out to the Senior Management group using the forums.

Mark has also found a number of Change Management documents that I will be reading in the near future, along with my new book on Agile project management. As the project has been identified as more of a programme than a project both Sam and myself are looking to go to the JISC Infonet training event in Nottingham on Programme Managment.

At the moment we can't create our consortium agreement until we meet with the missing project partners, which hopefully will be in the next few weeks as we want to be up front about what is expected. In the meantime we will be trying to meet with the different project spokes and with other interested teams in the University.

Monday, 27 October 2008

Partners Join in

We had a partner meeting on Friday morning which enabled us to speak for the first time with the partners about their involvement in the project. They seemed very positive about how this would help them engage with the university more and hopefully impact on the processes developed at the university. Unfortunately Ashton and Burton were unable to attend so we will have to run a meeting at those colleges, ensuring that we get the same backing from them. We have agreed a draft schedule of work in their absence and also discussed the expectations for the project,including the signing of a consortium agreement.

We are really ready to get going on seeing partners and discussing their baseline experiences with them, and have already got one date down to see the HE team at Newcastle college. Richard has agreed to manage the Focus Groups as Partner Liaison, and Sue did a great job of promoting the Validation Support Network to the senior managers, and will be doing the same at the partner colleges, as long as she is free. The partners did raise some issues about how we clearly mark work done on the validation support network as Enable, rather than staff simply participating in DIVAS, and I am planning a meeting with Sue to bash this one out this week.

Thursday, 16 October 2008

Diff'rent Strokes!

The Progamme meeting in Oxford was at the start of this week and went really well. We have now all been asigned to different cluster groups based on project similarities. We worked together for the two days in discussing what we hoped to achieve and although we had different projects we were all very interested in what the other projects where trying to achieve.

To work out which group we belonged in we had to do a short TV show pitch to the group on the project. Here is what was prepared for the day, although we could not use it on the day.

While we put the our pitches to each other we relaxed in large bean bags rather than using the normal chair setup!

During the session "Tomorrows World" we put together a list of successes for 2012 that I thought would be worth recording here.
  • Coherent and flexible product portfolio which is sufficiently small to be effective
  • Better student experience
  • Regional and national employers engaged with the university which is known to be responsive in nature
  • Business processes around curriculum design are sufficient and operate coherently across partners
  • Above processes will be transparent to all involved
  • Use of technology to support and enhance is both diverse and connected
  • Policies exercise minimal level of control while sustaining innovation.
    We also have a programme level community site that I need to take a look at.

Thursday, 9 October 2008

First Senior Management Working Group meeting

All went well at the SMWG meeting on Tuesday, we almost had a full complement of senior managers and everyone had something to contribute to the meeting. After introductions Mark went through a presentation covering the context of the project (this is quite long so may take some time to load):

Mark also introduced the first of the Issues that the project is hoping to raise awareness off (and hopefully find a solution to). Sam (the Technical Manager for the project) did a great job with a presentation on Identity Management which was found to be a barrier in a number of recent projects including SUNIWE and SURF WBL-Way:

This got the SMWG talking about how they should raise awareness of this problem and how it should be addressed. There was consensus around the table that this was a big issue for the University and was something that needed to be addressed.

A lot of questions were around the project documentation and governance and as the project moves forward a number of these documents will be released. We will be using our local repository, HIVE to store project and spoke documents, and they can be accessed by the project via the closed forum created in phpBBServer.

Thursday, 2 October 2008

Project Partners

I had my first meeting with Richard yesterday, to talk about how to bring the project partner colleges on board and what we expect of them. We are organising a meeting to introduce the partners to the ideas behind Enable and also to talk about what will be expected of them, both in the short term and over the period of the project. This is scheduled to occur at the end of October. In the meantime I will be introducing the Enable project to the SURF Curriculum Mananagment Board later on this morning.