Friday, 29 January 2010

Managing Change and Innovation

Flexible Service Delivery Event

This week has been a busy one, we spent the first two days down in London with the Flexible Service Delivery programme, the first day was catching up with projects and talking about the use of SOA, and other solutions to managing data.
The second was focused on modelling and using Enterprise Architecture. This was very useful for us, and in particular for me, as it highlighted a number of issues around governance and process ownership that is needed for the modelling to be successful. It was also interesting to see during the modelling exercise that everyone had their own perspectives to a similar process, depending on their experiences and knowledge.

UPDATE: Since this blog we have used ArchiMate and Enterprise Architecture extensively to support the work of Enable (see Enable: Using Archimate in the Enable Project), and have pushed the benefits of the approach to other projects including XCRi, Student Systems, Assessment and Feedback, and Partnerships. This approach is slowly being appreciated by all levels of management at Staffordshire University.
I have had my paper successfully accepted to the 8th International Conference on Education and Information Systems, Technologies and Applications: EISTA 2010, held in Florida in June – this is based on my document I wrote a while ago for the Senior Management Working Group on Programme Management, to fit with the presentation I gave them last year. I’m pretty excited about this, and looking forward to discussing the theories etc. As part of this I have submitted something similar for the Plymouth conference as a trial. It’s the first time for me presenting all on my own!

UPDATE: Read my experiences here about the EISTA conference, to read the paper I did please check out. The paper is now available "Corfield, FM, (2010) 'Supporting an Innovative Curriculum in a Traditional HE Environment. Developing a winning strategy to support change at Staffordshire University', Journal of Education, Informatics, and Cybernetics, Vol 2, No 3, 2010".

As I am becoming more and more focused on Portfolio Management /TOGAF it is clear that support from the whole of executive, along with clear governance and business strategy statements are needed. How ready are we for all this? At the moment I would have to say not very, however with the work of the project and by constant communication with staff, this will change over the next year.

Friday, 22 January 2010


This week has been a planning week, with looking at the issues raised, and putting a plan of recommendations together for the SMWG. This document is designed to support how the programme office will work, and the work we are doing with EA and TOGAF.

As part of the work of Enable we are now talking to our Quality office around how they see the information used to support curriculum design being better utilised. This has had us discussing the issues found during the Quality Review (as well as those from interviews with Enable) and some ideal solutions to these issues using supporting technology. We will be following TOGAF for this information and are using our initial meetings to complete the “vision” stage. Sam is using the TOGAF guidelines to create scenarios from these meetings as part of it.

Next week is a heavy one from the perspective of EA as both Sam and I will be attending the next FSD meeting in London which is followed by an EA day. We then have an Architecture Elluminate session scheduled for the Wednesday afternoon. All EA hands on deck! I have installed BizzDesign on my little laptop which could also be quite interesting!

Friday, 15 January 2010

More snow time

As mentioned in my last blog the SMWG was supposed to be this week, however snow once again fell from the skies making it impossible to run, therefore it has been rescheduled for February. This is useful as there is now further discussion occurring at Executive level around the development of a programme office. We are waiting to hear what happens with those discussions and how they impact on the programme office governance and ideas we have already worked on in Enable. As part of the work we are doing for a programme office we are organising individual faculty meetings with Deans, heads of service, and FAD's as part dissemination about Enable and part discussion about their individual initiatives that could impact on the university, in the arena of CDD. This will then lead to meetings with those leading the initiatives to find out more about the work they are doing.
This leads on from last years interviews with internal projects and the issues mentioned in the last blog, along with these we have also managed to have most of the meetings with award leaders, finding out their experiences of validation, annual review and the 5 year review. We have had some interesting discussions about what would make these experiences easier and more responsive, and in one case had a good open discussion about the culture of lecturers and attitudes to senior/ executive management. These have been noted down to discuss at the next Enable team meeting.
Next week we have more internal Enable meetings, and we will also be talking with CETIS. Sam is also helping me with my first adventure into using BizzDesign Architect, could be interesting.
By now I was hoping to know whether a paper I have written on the development of a programme office in supporting a change in CDD had been accepted in the US but nothing has been said yet. I will let you know as soon as I do.

Friday, 8 January 2010

Having a n-ice new year

Sorry about that! Things are quiet for me at the moment, as I have been house bound for the last three days thanks to the ice on the roads by where I live. Fortunately Sam has been carrying on with interviewing staff around the curriculum design processes for mapping and for capturing more issues. We have created a long list of issues from the 2009 interviews, as part of this I have tried to group them in different areas and themes it seems that the issues can be broken down into the following areas:
  • Strategy (Culture, Product, Resourcing)
  • Student Support (Communication, Marketing, Systems)
  • Course DD (Communication, Annual Monitoring, Marketing, Engagement, Product, Processes)
  • Course Information (Communication, Systems)
  • Course Support (Resourcing)
  • Global (Communication, Culture, Engagement, Id Management, Processes, Project Management, Resourcing, Systems)
  • Partnerships (Communication, Marketing, Processes, Progression, Resources)
  • Project Management (Resourcing, Scoping, Systems, Timescales)
These will be discussed further at next weeks SMWG as long as snow doesn't get it cancelled. We really need this SMWG as the last few have been cancelled due to clashes either with JISC events or with other senior management meetings. We were hoping to be discussing the Programme Office principle at this meeting but it looks like this has got bigger than Enable and the executive are now interested in the model I have documented. Not sure what is going to happen next on this, but all sounds very positive still.

Other than the spreadsheet I have been catching up on previous Elluminate sessions that JISC have been running via the circle network, and managed to catch one live on Wednesday thanks to working from home. Some interesting discussions are going on out there on how to manage organisational change and addressing cultural issues to changing curriculum delivery.

Over the next week I am expecting some interesting reports from our project partners summarising their experiences over the last year with Staffordshire University. Will report on these and other points raised in this blog as soon as I can :)