The goal of Transform IT’s User Support Services project is to improve efficiency and support levels for core and common IT services at the University of Oregon. Through this restructuring, we also aim to balance change with what works well, including existing areas of high support and the working relationships between IT staff and their clients. We are especially excited that USS will also provide support to groups that have been underserved or unsupported in the past.
Campus Engagement and Approach
This work has been guided by broad university input beginning in May 2017. Since then, we’ve prepared for this change through focused workshops, campus-wide data gathering and business analysis, quarterly town halls, quarterly meetings with IT directors, deans, and VPs, and many discussions with campus stakeholders. During this period, we invited IT staff have to monthly drop-in conversations with Jessie Minton, chief information officer. We also sought volunteers to develop USS implementation plans, and we now have nearly 70 employees engaged in 11 work teams to inform and design how User Support Services is implemented. The design and related materials presented in the following section is informed by the work output of more than 70 employees over the past year.
Minton has also discussed this organizational structure with an extensive set of stakeholders, including the president, provost, deans, vice presidents, vice provosts, IT directors, academic CFOs, chiefs of staff, senate leadership, SEIU leadership, and others. The USS implementation project itself engaged the IT community broadly. In advance of this announcement of the draft organization chart, Minton also reviewed these proposed changes today by inviting all IT employees to discuss the announcement via small group meetings.
This design is outlined in these documents:
- USS organizational chart (July 13, 2020; PDF)
- USS organizational chart narrative (December 10, 2019; PDF)
- USS Service Level Agreement Strategy (February 14, 2020; PDF)
- USS Liaison Program (November 1, 2019; PDF)
This design was created with the following as guiding principles and key details:
- Each box represents one person,
- each of the three academic support teams will cover a geographic region of campus, and those regions are listed on the chart;
- IT staff will generally remain in their current locations with the exception of the Enterprise Device Management (EDM) team (the team predominantly marked in green),
- organizational changes are budget neutral: no new funding was required to execute this plan,
- services offered today will continue to be offered even as some IT staff move reporting lines,
- career conversations with IT staff have started,
- student employees, who are not listed on the org chart, will continue working with the staff they currently report to, and
- User Support Services is not eliminating any positions.
Transform IT’s User Support Services project is net neutral in terms of staff budget. The large majority of jobs in User Support Services are not new, and these roles will be filled by reassigning existing IT staff. The EDM team, which is mostly new, will be staffed by hiring current UO IT staff.
The USS organizational structure will be the main topic of the January 28 Town Hall on Transform IT from 10:30am to 12:00pm in the Knight Library Browsing Room. Minton will discuss the org chart and answer audience questions. If you have a question you would like Jessie to address at the meeting, please email that question to Kristin Smith (firstname.lastname@example.org).
A town hall will be held in Portland at the White Stag building on Feb. 20 to discuss the same topics. That meeting is Thursday, Feb. 20 from 2:00pm to 3:00pm in Room 150.
The Academic 1 portfolio will be the first to transition, and that transition should begin in late February or early March. Once we have gathered two months of data on how the Academic 1 portfolio is performing after the transition, we will pause to determine what worked well and what needs to be adjusted for future transitions. The balance of the groups will be scheduled for transition through 2020, with the goal of completing that work by December 2020.
This project has been a unique and invaluable journey, one that has been enriched by the thoughts and perspectives of so many IT staff, students, and employees. As we start a new decade, we are excited to provide a revised and rationalized IT support structure to the university so we can better facilitate the university’s success in this decade and beyond.