Thursday, 12 May 2011

Seeing change with fresh eyes

Yesterdays JISC programme meeting on Transformational Change & Demonstrating Impact was incredibly useful (See the Twitter Story for other peoples viewpoints)- first for the informal conversations that occurred during the sessions, and second for helping us as a project recognise what we have been able to achieve over the past 2 years. This is an important step for us as often it is easy to get stuck on what we haven't achieved rather than what we have. This made me feel very positive - we are indeed seeing a change in culture and attitudes in the university, if not changing behaviour, we are ensuring activity within the university is focused and driven by issues now and not solutions, and stakeholder engagement has certainly increased for new initiatives.

Part of the work was done before the meeting, where we were asked to think about six activities we had done as part of the project, and six outcomes we felt had been achieved. We came up with:
  1. modelling of processes to communicate need for change
  2. creation of validation documentation with built in guidelines for TSL and general support
  3. developing an internal Flexible Learning Toolbox to support the development of new awards using workflow, probably drawing on Pineapple software and including linking roles, competencies to the e-learning models
  4. Creating a pilot for Enterprise Architecture and supporting centralised
  5. Guiding work in spoke development for example TransAPEL and investigating streamlining validation
  6. developing a "change heap" to allow staff to input & search initiatives within the university.


  1. Understanding the requirement for programme management (Programme, Portfolio, Project)
  2. Embedding Enterprise Architecture into new innovations
  3. Stronger governance for innovation that is not restrictive
  4. Stronger relationships between college partners and faculties; Consistent message about partnerships
  5. Reducing course development from +18 months to under a year
  6. Understanding by executive / senior management for a holistic approach to managing change

At the time of completing this task we hadn’t really put much thought into how the two linked, which was an important part of the second session of the day – how were they linked, and what was the evidence? We were told to put a story together of the points above, and during the session (thanks to us trying to fit the same story example) we ended up in a bit of a mess, with a diagram with the need for supportive notes!

So today I tried the exercise again without thinking about the example or the distractions that were inherent in the session. This gave us a much more understandable diagram - which has helped in our understanding of where the project started, the outcomes that have been supported through the work of Enable, and the impact they have had on activities within Enable. I'm now wondering the value of us documenting activities, outcomes and evidence based on themes from Enable but I think that should be kept for the Cluster to create - and perhaps write more on. I'm going to think about sessions 3 & 4 (focusing on Transformation) and consider whether evidence needs to be added to this diagram? I will blog those thoughts, plus what was discussed on the day a bit later (otherwise would have a massive blog here!).

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