Prepare for the Cloud: Workflow and Security
During a cloud implementation, designing workflows and defining security access for roles across campus can help streamline business processes and improve overall efficiency.
Moving to the cloud helps higher ed institutions transform workflows and improve efficiency. In fact, optimizing workflows can be a key benefit of a cloud implementation – if it’s done right. However, when people across campus are doing things differently, it can be hard to develop a standard, streamlined workflow that works for everyone and that everyone will accept. The key is to start the workflow design early in the process and involve campus in this design. Kick off your project by having a cross-campus team identify processes that have high and broad impact. In an HCM implementation, examples include recruit to hire and time entry.
Bring people together and document your current state for each of these high-impact processes. This is a great opportunity for your change management team to capture feedback. Document how the work flows today and start discussing how to increase efficiency and standardization. It’s surprising what you can learn. During this process, staff at Boise State University discovered it took 11 approvals to hire a graduate assistant. By the time the team received all those approvals, the semester was over. But before process mapping, no one knew what that workflow looked like or why it took so long.
Have the tough discussions with people across campus about how things could flow more efficiently and how to be more streamlined. Encourage everyone to talk about what would be ideal, keeping in mind the goal of simplification. Sharing broadly helps the team get everyone’s input and ultimately, buy-in. For example, people are often in the approval process because they need to know, but they don’t have direct authority over the budget. At NACUBO 2017, Stacy Pearson, who was at Boise State during its cloud implementation and is now Vice President for Finance and Administration at Washington State University, talked about how campus-wide discussions enabled Boise State to uncover why each person was in the process. Cloud technology enabled the sending of a need-to-know notice to people who simply needed to be informed but weren’t authorities on the budget and that in itself streamlined the process, Pearson said.
Once the workflow and approval requirements are finalized, you can define roles and security. Bundle security and roles as much as possible to help simplify testing and maintenance and adding and removing users.
The last step is to use these workflow and role definitions in testing to align future state processes and workflows. Business users across campus can participate in the testing to make sure these new workflows meet their needs.
Because campus has been involved from the start, business users will understand the new workflows and roles and will help champion the benefits of these new workflows to their teams. This will help ensure buy-in and adoption.Download Now