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BITS: Annual Report FY05

  1. Departmental Mission
    The Business Information Technology Services (BITS) provides planning, implementation, enhancements, maintenance, and technical support to the Business & Finance Division for all its Information Systems needs such that the Departments can best serve our customers: Students, Faculty, Staff and Community.
  2. Department Goal

    Aid the division in communicating their information, via the web.

    Timely response to all communiqués indicating hardware and software questions or problems.

    Keep abreast of future enhancements to Information Technology Systems and create a Strategic Plan for the division.

    Ensure the viability of technology equipment and ensure that advances do not tax this equipment, we inventory and track the usage of the computers in the division and maintain a 3-year rollover of inventory.

    To strive towards the above goals, the Staff must be aware of Information Technology Possibilities and Constraints. In that regard we see it as our duty to help train the staff in further understanding of the tools they have available or will need. This training is needed for both BITS staff members and all our customers.
    * Utilize the web to help our customers find the information they need
    * Prompt service to our customers
    * Plan for the future
  3. Assessment of Goals\Department Statement of Outcomes

    Emails, phone messages, and discussions with the campus community provide a constant feedback loop to create and attain reports that the campus can successfully utilize to maintain their Departmental Budgets.

    By monitoring the general information questions we receive on the division web site (via www@bf.westga.edu), we are able to track what new information is needed on the web site (which is added if possible). Most of the requests we have received are specific to other departments outside this division. These requests are promptly forwarded to the appropriate department so they could respond.

    Emails (help@bf.westga.edu), phone messages (96300), and discussions with our customers (the employess of the division) provide a constant feedback loop to help us maintain the divisional computers and prepare for future trends.

    Example to Change/Improve a Process -  In coordination with ITS, we have taken steps to ensure the integrity and safety of the Business & Finance systems. Utilizing the myriad tools at ITS' disposal and with their staff experts we are further exploring the make up of the B&F systems; removing obsolete services, further strengthening system setups, and setting in place further security protocols. This will be an ongoing joint project.
  4. General Statement of Department Condition:

    Security concerns and the three IT audits we participated in this past year help point out where we can increase our controls to further ensure the integrity of the Business & Finance systems. Preparing for, participating with, and reinforcing systems became a major component of the departments' work load this past year.

    Re-examining our processes and attempting to change manual processes to automated processes, examine where a new interfaces may help alleviate a process offers more avenues for streamlining departmental functions. Although BITS nor FSTT had any processes directly under review within the BPR, we are instrumental in aiding the departments in so doing. As a side light to the BPR, we are examining the security information discovered this past year. These discoveries will become processes on the BPR list of processes to review, often.

    We are slated to readdress some of our core processes in this next fiscal year.

    The growing list of functions that our One Card system offers, the further refining of the PeopleSoft ERP package, and the growing need to manage the University's space and utilization, presents challenges and opportunities to rethink how we offer services to our Students, Faculty and Staff.
  5. Departmental Achievements

    In FY2005, BITS helped transition Human Resources\Payroll from PeopleSoft version 7.6 to 8.8.

    BITS & FSTT were instrumental in the PBX phone system deployment for the division. We helps coordinate and took part in the actual switch out of the old POTS (plain old telephone system) phone system with a new, state of the art, PBX system.

    We continue to enhance the financial web applications to aid different parts of campus with their financial information.

    We continue to add funtionality to our One Card system. The lab printing package, Pharos, continues to expand into more labs.

    The major theme this past year seem to be: Upgrading software. A majority of the software packages used throughout the Business & Finance Division were upgraded this past year:
    * FME in Campus Planning and Facilities
    * Pamet in Public Safety
    * Lenel Door Access System
    * Student Loan programs
    * Trackpad in Warehouse
    * Pitney Bowes in Mail Services
    * InfoSpan in Purchasing
    * As with all upgrades, this necessitated the creation or updates of support programs and interfaces.

In addition to these major projects, the Business and Finance Division utilizes a myriad of specialized software packages to help all of our customers: the students, faculty, visitors, and staff of the campus. These packages, just like the better-known software packages, require on going support, service, and upgrades.