OIT Go Live: What to Expect

We are currently training over 180 staff that will begin using STABLE as part of the OIT migration.  On January 2, customers will experience a centralized platform for engaging support from both OIT and Facilities as well as several other departments across campus.

As the new year begins,

  • Emails sent to help@smu.edu will open a request within STABLE for the IT Help Desk team.
  • When you login to smu.edu/stable, you will see several new gadgets on the home page including IT Requests, Accounts, and Additional Services.
  • Faculty and staff will also see a menu on the left side for OIT Scheduled Maintenance.  This displays any upcoming system maintenance or scheduled outages.
  • The mobile app will also include a new section for the OIT forms and allow you to generate a simple request for facilities, IT, or for computer inventory updates.

The other exciting new feature we are implementing is the ability to update a request or communicate with the staff assigned to your request via email.  Once the request is opened, you can respond to the STABLE confirmation email you receive to update your request or provide additional details.  The subject line of that confirmation will have the full order number listed. This should not be modified!   Once you respond, the system will associate your response with that order number and update the request.  If the order number is not included or is not complete (for example 12345.00 and not just 12345), a new request will be created.

It is important to continue opening facilities work orders using the forms located in STABLE.

For IT requests, you can either complete the online forms or email help@smu.edu as you do today.

This launch is a critical milestone in this project which began four years ago!  We look forward to simplifying and enhancing the customer support experience for all of SMU.

Update on the OIT Implementation

Work is progressing quickly for the OIT Implementation of STABLE. The team is currently building all of the forms and workflows to support the various types of requests. During the first weeks in November, areas currently using STABLE will get a sneak peek of the new environment to provide feedback and recommended changes.  The training team will also begin to finalize the training schedule and course to be delivered in December.  There will be over 150 individuals trained in the new software, representing not just OIT but many other departments as well. Finally, the new system will be live as everyone returns from the holidays for the spring term.

This will represent a significant milestone in the implementation project.  Our vision from the start, was to build a system that simplified the customer experience and allowed departments across the university to help support and serve each other.  We have simplified many processes that previously stretched across many areas to allow a single entry form for the customer.  We’re enabling support teams to easily transfer a request from one area to another without having the customer complete a different form.  We’re also enabling data analytics to help us understand critical issues, trends and needs from both the facilities and IT areas of service.  All of this, will help make the Hilltop experience a little bit better for the SMU Community.

If you currently use the Help Desk ticketing system, you will receive a meeting invite in the next few weeks for your preview to the new system.  If you have any questions, please feel free to contact Rachel Mulry (rmulry@smu.edu).

Announcing New Features in STABLE on August 13

The STABLE team has been diligently building new features and tools to help support SMU faculty, staff and students. On August 13, we will implement several key enhancements that will make it easier for you to submit new requests, manage requests, and communicate with the assigned personnel about the issue.

Introducing the Mobile App!

We have built out the new customer mobile application which will allow you to submit requests and book spaces on campus from your mobile phone. The application is available for download for Android and iOS devices. Once signed in you will be able to do the following:

  • Submit facilities requests
  • Submit Event requests
  • Locate available meeting rooms and make a reservation
  • View computer inventory assigned to you (faculty and staff only)
  • View your requests and current status
  • Access quick links to the SMU Events page and more

As we onboard various other departments over the next several months, we will expand these features on the mobile application as well. Instructions for downloading the mobile app is posted at smu.edu/stable.

Introducing enhanced communication tools (Delayed until end of month)

We’ve introduced several new communication tools over the past year to help streamline the communication from the assigned personnel to the customer. However, these enhancements still required you to login to STABLE to update your request. Beginning September 1, you will be able to provide an update to your request via email! Assigned personnel can send you a communication with the order number in the subject line through the STABLE software. You can then simply respond to that email, which will then update the request and notify the technician. Your request must still originate in STABLE but this enhancement will improve the communication flow until your issue is resolved.

New Dashboards and Reports for Designated Building Contacts, RLSH and Computer Inventory

There is a wealth of data in STABLE across the various components from space utilization, to trends of requests by building, to computer inventory eligibility and more. Navigating through the data elements within the application can be slightly tricky. Therefore, we have built out several new dashboard reports that display the information visually. The dashboards were designed in Power BI and are updated daily. These reports provide information that has been requested by individuals responsible for managing a building or set of buildings. We will automatically grant access and send information to the designated building contacts, key personnel in RLSH, and individuals who previously had access to the computer inventory reports in iSupport. If another individual requires this information, please email stable@smu.edu. We have many additional dashboards under development to help provide actionable and clear data for decision making.

Other Enhancements

While not as “flashy’ as the items above, we are also introducing several new features or fixes.

  • The Blanton Ballrooms (room 108, 110, and 112) will be available for reservations via STABLE. They will no longer manage reservations in Outlook.
  • New Event FAQ: displays answers to the commonly asked event questions
  • Changes to our HR integration will automatically update the security role for an individual that moves from a student to an employee providing the right set of forms for the new affiliation
  • The Financial Services department within Enrollment Services will begin using STABLE for several internal processes.
  • Several internal processes within Facilities have been refined and will be implemented.

We are excited to announce these new enhancements and features. Work continues for the transition of the OIT ticketing processes into STABLE. We are still targeting December 2023 for the OIT implementation. More information will be available later this fall.

Launching Phase 3

The STABLE team has been hard at work delivering a number of new features and enhancements during fall of 2022 and spring 2023. The following are a few highlights of development features and key processes that have been completed:

  • Real Estate module configuration and report build
  • Development of several reporting dashboards for Space Management, Maintenance and Grounds and Facilities leadership.
  • Conducted the second annual Space Survey
  • Conducted the annual Computer Asset verification process
  • Revised event forms and workflows based on stakeholder feedback
  • Implemented a communication enhancement for work requests, giving customers the ability to submit updates to a request from the portal
  • Implemented new communication features for technicians and supervisors
  • Launched preventative maintenance plans
  • Launched service level agreements
  • Delivered enhancements for over 500 CAD files, improving readability and accuracy
  • and more.

Over the next 10 months, the team will be focused on building the services and forms to onboard OIT and the other departments that currently use the help desk ticketing solution. There will be three main go live dates associated with this effort.

  • July 31 will be the first go live date including the following departments: ImageNet, Course Scheduling, Lyle Distance Education, Concur, Enrollment Services, and the Health Center.
  • December 2023 will onboard OIT and departments involved in the account management process
  • March 2024 will complete the on-boarding of OIT for several internal processes.

While the development work is underway for these new modules, we will continue to deliver enhancements to the current system and existing modules as well. This summer, we will introduce a customer mobile application that will allow you to more easily book space and open requests from your mobile device. We will deliver another round of communication enhancements as well as advanced reporting for several areas. We will also upgrade the environment to the most recent software release in May. We remain focused on continual build out and enhanced use of the system while refining and improving our existing components with your invaluable feedback and support. More to come!

Revised Event Forms Launched

As we designed the campus event form process within STABLE, our goal was to eliminate the need for individuals to submit multiple forms for an event.  On August 13, we implemented a few changes to the existing form and process to incorporate the approval process for serving alcohol at an event, as well as engaging vendors that are not part of our SMU preferred vendors list.  A requestor will no longer have to complete a separate form for alcohol approval and SMU Purchasing will now automatically be included in the request process to review vendors for compliance.  In addition, a few new internal templates were built and implemented to for special events.  While these forms are not available to the campus at large, individuals who are responsible for coordinating services for large events such as athletic games, boulevard events, etc. will use these to ensure the appropriate support and details are captured.

Please remember that many different departments are involved in delivering services for events or verifying that vendors and event plans are in compliance with our policies. In order to plan and support your event appropriately, submit your request with as much advance notice and detail as possible.  Failure to do so may impact our ability to support your event!

If you have questions about event processes on campus, visit smu.edu/events

 

Technology Purchases and Computer Inventory in STABLE

As we begin the new academic year, we are transitioning several IT processes to the STABLE environment. These processes include computer inventory, technology purchasing, computer orders, and warehouse management.

Computer Inventory

In early August, Faculty and staff will see a new icon on their STABLE home screen called My Computers. This will display all SMU computers to which they are the assigned owner. It will also list the eligibility dates for replacement.

We are implementing several other improvements to our computer inventory system to provide better reporting by major divisions. We have also built a computer health dashboard that will allow our desktop consultants to quickly identify computers that need attention. This allows us to proactively address issues before they escalate and impact your work!

Technology Purchasing and Orders

Technology Orders will continue to use the website smu.edu/techsales to submit requests. These requests will generate a work order in STABLE instead of the current IT Help Desk system. We are implementing a number of tools for the individuals responsible for ordering, receiving, installing and billing to support this process. While these changes are behind the scenes, they allow us to process the orders and manage our warehouse more efficiently.

The associated charges for technology orders will be processed within STABLE through an integration with Financials.SMU. Each charge will list the associated work order in the Q drive report. Individuals reviewing the Q drive report could then easily lookup that work order from the “Order lookup” gadget in STABLE to review the details of the request.

Future IT Components

In August and September, a plan will be compiled to outline the next implementation phase for the IT ticketing components. Additional information will be shared once that plan is complete.

STABLE: Summer Implementation Plans

We are nearing the first anniversary of the launch of STABLE at SMU. Since the launch, we have continued to enhance the current functionality while implementing other new processes. This summer, we will introduce the warehouse management and purchasing processes and tools for technology purchases. We will also reveal the integration with our computer inventory to allow employees to view their assigned computers within STABLE and view eligibility dates for replacement. In addition, Continue reading “STABLE: Summer Implementation Plans”

STABLE: What’s Next?

Campus is settling in using the new room reservation and event management system in STABLE.  In just the first month, there were 60,500 classroom reservations, 15,100 room reservations, and 337 event requests!  We continue to adjust and enhance the configuration and tools available to improve the experience for both the requestor and the individuals responding to those requests.  We will continue to develop the processes and functionality throughout the next year.

Since June 2021, we’ve introduced various modules in STABLE supporting numerous processes within the Office of Facilities Planning and Management including: work orders, financial reconciliation, warehouse management, stock management, asset tracking, equipment checkout, health and safety, real estate, and more.  During the spring semester, we will begin implementing a few of these modules to support similar processes within OIT. Our focus will be on the computer inventory, OIT warehouse, and technology purchases.  We will provide updates on these processes as they become available.

We are also working through a number of enhancements to the existing modules.  We are implementing a more robust reporting framework to support more accessible dashboards and data to inform decisions.  We are working on an enhancement for the room scheduling feature to address critical functionality for course scheduling. We are also working on various data validation processes to ensure the information is reliable and current.

Remember to review our wiki for new videos and information on all of the various components of STABLE.  If you have any questions, please email stable@smu.edu.

Room Reservations: Pictures, Attributes and More

We officially launched the new room reservations and event management platform on January 10.  It will take us all a few weeks to work through the hurdles of learning new software and adapting to the new processes.  However, there are some new features that should be a welcomed benefit!

View the Schedule Grid

Faculty and Staff can now view the schedule of most rooms within STABLE.

  1. On the left side of the screen, you’ll find a menu “Reservations View Only
  2. Use the filters at the top to navigate to different spaces, days, etc

Access Room Images and a list of Technology

Everyone in STABLE can now access a room details menu.  It’s on the left side of the screen– called “View room details.”  This will allow you to locate reservable spaces within the various buildings and view images, technology attributes, special restrictions, etc. 

Reservations can be made from the homescreen gadget (indoor or outdoor reservation).  This also lets you search for particular spaces or spaces with the specific technology that is required for your meeting/event.  We have had a few reports of some bugs with recurring meetings and are looking into that.  But in just under two days of going live, there are already 600 room reservations that have been entered!

Stay tuned for more changes and enhancements over the next several months.

Events and Room Reservations: FAQ

We will soon introduce the new event management and room reservation process to campus.  The teams are busy finalizing the processes, configuration and documentation.  Training of our room schedulers, event leads, and campus partners has begun and will continue for the next several weeks. In addition, we are building out a new website to help guide you through the entire event process. All of these features will be available to campus on January 10.

For this update, we wanted to answer a few of the questions we’ve received about this new module. Continue reading “Events and Room Reservations: FAQ”