ctcLink Goes Live for Clark College and SBCTC
The second half of Deployment Group 2 (DG2) — Clark College and the Washington State Board for Community and Technical Colleges (SBCTC) agency — went live on ctcLink PeopleSoft as of Monday, Oct. 28, 2019.
Clark College and SBCTC staff have been taking advantage of a dedicated post go-live support open WebEx service line available for immediate response needs, troubleshooting, and reporting issues. The most common calls to the support line have been access and permission level log-in issues or assignments.
SBCTC agency employees logged in to their new ctcLink accounts for the first time, checking their data and basic settings. SBCTC and Clark employees will use the Human Capital Management (HCM) and Finance (FIN) PeopleSoft modules. Clark employees and students will also use Campus Solutions (CS) modules.
Clark College students will see the new ctcLink interface as of Thursday, Oct. 31.
The Conversion Process
Beginning Thursday night, Oct. 24, through Sunday, Oct. 27, the ctcLink Project technical and functional teams; SBCTC Application Services, Data Services and Infrastructure Services; the ctcLink Support organization; and Burgundy (our Amazon Web Services service provider), all worked together around-the-clock to convert Clark College and SBCTC’s data from the HP Legacy system to ctcLink PeopleSoft.
Technical teams worked overnight on multiple layers of conversion and validation to bring everyone back online for business by Monday morning, Oct. 28, 2019.
The Health Check
On Sunday morning, Oct. 27, Clark College and SBCTC subject matter experts (SMEs) conducted a ctcLink health check to validate the system and guide the recommendation for a “Go” or “No-Go” decision later that afternoon.
SMEs and pillar leads representing student services, financial aid, payroll, accounting, purchasing, human resources, grants management (to name just a few) spent several hours Sunday validating the conversion and walking through the system to check for issues, not to mention the countless hours they have spent validating and testing the data in several cycles.
Tacoma Community College and Community Colleges of Spokane also joined Sunday validation activities to check the ctcLink environment now that new “ctcLink family members” moved in.
As minor issues were found — mostly security-related issues with assigned roles, permissions, access — they were addressed by the ctcLink/SBCTC teams.
Project managers Susan Maxwell, Clark College, and Pat Daniels, SBCTC’s part-time PM on loan from Highline College, helped guide SMEs through the day’s activities.
Agency leaders stopped by to show support to the many teams who worked so hard this weekend to get ctcLink live.
The Go or No-Go Decision
During the Go/No-Go briefing on Sunday afternoon, Clark College and SBCTC PMs and leadership were presented a review of the full conversion weekend by Tara Keen, ctcLink Assistant Project Director. PeopleSoft Pillar Leads — John Henry Whatley for Campus Solutions, Ryan Martiny for Human Capital Management, and Christyanna Dawson for Finance — shared results of the morning validation session, any issues encountered, how they were corrected and any still outstanding.
Both Clark and SBCTC agency leadership officially approved the launch of ctcLink with a roll-call of stakeholders.
A contingency plan was in place to restore Legacy programs and data had the outcome been a “no go” instead of a “go” decision.
“So many people at SBCTC and Clark College have worked really hard for a long time to get us to this point,” said Jan Yoshiwara, SBCTC Executive Director and ctcLink Project Sponsor. “It’s an understatement to say this go-live is different from the last go-live [in 2015] and it’s due to the hard work by everyone here.”
John Boesenberg, SBCTC Deputy Executive Director for Business Operations and ctcLink Executive Sponsor, thanked the project team, praising the ctcLink Project team for its responsiveness to questions and concerns. “We’re ready to go,” he said. “We had a few bumps in the road with security, but overall for the Human Capital Management and Finance pillars, we have a strong endorsement to move forward.”
Sandra Fowler-Hill, Clark College Interim President, reported that more than 30-plus employees spent Sunday at Clark College (culminating nearly five years of effort) to make this happen. (Clark College was part of ctcLink Wave 1 and had originally expected to go live in May 2015.)
“You all in Olympia and here in Vancouver deserve a great big ‘hurrah’ because you’ve made this work and, together, we’ve got this,” Fowler-Hill said. “Thank you all: the Clark team for all its work and the SBCTC team for all of its support helping us move over bumps in the road and to everyone for staying committed to the prize.”
Susan Maxwell, Clark College ctcLink Project Manager, invited Clark’s PeopleSoft pillar leads to report on the validation session. They talked about the issues they worked through, gave feedback, and confirmed per pillar they were ready to go live.
Shanda Haluapo, Clark College Associate Vice President of Planning and Effectiveness and ctcLink Executive Sponsor, said, “If our pillar leads say it’s a go, then it’s a go!”
Maxwell confirmed, “Clark is a go!”
Christy Campbell, ctcLink Project Director, said the project, SBCTC Information Technology Division, and ctcLink support teams are excited to see what happens at Clark so the project team can take those lessons into the next deployment.
Campbell thanked everyone for all their hard work, including the project team, ctcLink (ERP) Support, Infrastructure, Data Services and Application Development teams, as well as SBCTC’s subject matter experts.
“It’s been a team effort here at the State Board and we want to thank Clark College and all its employees for their work over the last year-and-a-half to get us here,” Campbell said. “Clark College is really setting the stage for the rest of the colleges. And the other colleges are watching you very closely.”
Several project managers and leaders from future deployment groups were onsite at Clark College to observe and learn on the ground to prepare for their own turn at go-live: Carrie Powell, Centralia College (DG4) PM; Jason Hetterle, Wenatchee Valley College (DG4) PM; and Wendy Hall, Lower Columbia College (DG3) VP Effectiveness & College Relations, who volunteered to support communications and incident response.