ctclink Goes Live for North Seattle, Seattle Central and South Seattle Colleges
Yet another successful ctcLink implementation is in the books for SBCTC and Washington’s community and technical colleges as Deployment Group 4-B — Seattle Central College, North Seattle College, South Seattle College, and Seattle District office — officially went live on ctcLink this morning, Monday, Feb. 22, 2021.
With the addition of the Seattle Colleges, we mark a significant milestone for the college system's ctcLink Project: we are at the halfway mark, with 17 of 34 colleges now on ctcLink.
Success for the College System’s Largest District
Seattle Colleges, comprised of three colleges and a district office, have worked incredibly hard to get to this point, conducting complex preparation and go-live activities while working remotely.
Daniel Cordas, Seattle Colleges’ ctcLink Project Manager (PM), directed the many phases of implementing ctcLink for the four Seattle Colleges institutions. His experience as a charter partner in developing the state community and technical colleges’ common business processes was instrumental in helping the Seattle Colleges better align business processes across campuses.
Lead-Up to Go-Live
Beginning Thursday night, Feb. 18, through Sunday, Feb. 21, the Legacy team, ctcLink Project technical and functional teams — SBCTC Application Services, Data Services and Infrastructure Services, the ctcLink Support organization, and Burgundy (Amazon Web Services service provider) — all worked together around-the-clock to convert the colleges’ data from the HP Legacy system to ctcLink PeopleSoft.
Chandan Goel, Conversion Technical Lead; Bhuvana Samraj, Development Lead; Don Wheeler, Application Technical Lead; Veeraiah Gorantla, Development CEMLI Developer; Cibichandar Karnan, Conversion CEMLI Developer; and Venkat Gangula, Environment Architect Lead, worked for three days straight, with very little rest, leading the multiple layers of conversion and validation.
Ray Gartner, SBCTC Customer Services Director, has carried the baton for every deployment group supporting technical, testing and other teams in data-related activities to help colleges transition from the HP Legacy software to PeopleSoft ctcLink and this weekend was no exception.
The technical teams partnered with Sandy Main, SBCTC Application Services Director, and her team to bring everyone back online for business by Monday morning.
Checking and re-checking before Go-Live
On Sunday afternoon, Feb. 21, college subject matter experts (SMEs) — supported by the ctcLink Project team, as well as Dani Bundy, ctcLink Customer Support Director, and her team — conducted a go-live validation check to validate the system.
SMEs and pillar leads representing student services, financial aid, payroll, accounting, purchasing, human resources, and grants management spent several hours validating the conversion and walking through the system to check for issues, not to mention the countless hours already spent validating and testing the data in several cycles over the last many months.
Cordas helped guide the SMEs through the day’s validation activities. As issues were found during the validation period, they were either addressed by the ctcLink/SBCTC teams or noted as issues to be resolved in the days ahead.
The "Go or No-Go" decision process
During the Go/No-Go briefing early Sunday evening, college and SBCTC PMs and leadership were presented a review of the full conversion weekend, including outcomes and issues.
Tara Keen, ctcLink Assistant Project Director and Solutions Architect; Chandan Goel, Technical Lead; andPeopleSoft pillar PMs and leads (John Henry Whatley, Campus Solutions; Sanjiv Bhagat, Human Capital Management; Christyanna Dawson, Finance; Ajay Koppu and Charles Velasquez, Student Financials; Rachelle Russell, Financial Aid) shared highlights of the validation session, any issues encountered, how they were corrected and those still outstanding.
Although there are a few files to clean up, Whatley praised the Seattle Colleges on their better-than-99% conversion success in Campus Solutions:
- Seattle Central: 99.97% success converting 622,252 records; 100% Test Score and Service Indicator conversion
- South Seattle: 99.75% success converting 433,322 records; 100% Test Score and Service Indicator conversion
- North Seattle: 99.94% success converting 519,861 records
Service Indicators can include items like enrollment verification, transcript holds, registration holds, front-of-line service, use of facilities, disability services, and the like, which are assigned to a student’s account for future tracking and action.
Dawson noted that in the Finance pillar, some issues were found in general ledger balances which will be examined and corrected after go-live, as well as one accounts-receivable balance assigned to the wrong customer. But overall, the Finance conversion went well.
For Student Financials, Velasquez praised the colleges for successfully matching the balance amounts from Legacy to ctcLink: North Seattle 99.99%; South Seattle, 100%; and Central, 99.93%.
Bhagat said no functionality issues were reported in Human Capital Management. A few minor security issues were reported and resolved during the validation call. Production security issues related to Position data access and sick leave buy-out self-service page access were reported and are being addressed.
College Roll Call to Go-Live
Following the review and input from SBCTC/ctcLink and college leadership, the official “Go” was determined for Seattle Colleges.
Daniel Cordas said, “It’s a thumbs-up from the pillar teams. We are ready and willing to move forward.”
Cordas expressed his appreciation to the Seattle Colleges enrollment staff who worked extremely hard to clean up duplicate SID/student records over the past year. In addition, he commended the Seattle Colleges ctcLink Project pillar leads (Derreck Pressley, Campus Solutions Pillar Lead; Mark Baumann, Campus Solutions Data Specialist; Terri Plischke, Finance Pillar Lead; and Jessica Wagner, HCM Pillar Lead;) for all their hard work over the past year to make this go-live possible.
He also thanked the ctcLink Project Student Financials team — in particular Charles Velasquez, Charles Sapien, Spencer Egbert, and Prakhar Srivastav — for help with their student accounts and patiently working with the colleges’ cashiering teams.
Dr. Shouan Pan, Seattle Colleges Chancellor,gave kudos to Christy Campbell and all the ctcLink Project and Support teams for their pro-active work and close partnership. “It is a great relief to know almost everything converted well,” he said, noting the willingness of the team to step in and support the Seattle Colleges evenings and weekends, regardless of day or time.
It’s a Go!
Jan Yoshiwara, SBCTC Executive Director, congratulated the teams on their effort during a tough transition. “All your hard work has paid off,” Yoshiwara said. She also praised the transparency and candor about areas that still need work.
Grant Rodeheaver, SBCTC Deputy Executive Director for Information Technology and ctcLink Project Sponsor, expressed gratitude to the ctcLink Project, ctcLink Customer Support, Legacy, Infrastructure, Data Services and Application Development teams for teaming up to prepare the colleges to go live in the ctcLink system and supporting the colleges all the way to the finish line.
Christy Campbell, SBCTC Chief Technology Officer-ctcLink Program, thanked the ctcLink team for its hard work and resilience; the all-encompassing efforts of Seattle Colleges project manager, Daniel Cordas; the steadfast guidance of their executive sponsor, Dr. Kurt Buttleman; and the ongoing leadership and support of Seattle Colleges chancellor, Dr. Shouan Pan.
For Seattle Colleges
Throughout this week, Seattle Colleges employees will log in to their new ctcLink PeopleSoft accounts, checking their data and basic settings in Human Capital Management (HCM), Finance (FIN) and Campus Solutions (CS).
Seattle is taking advantage of a two-week, post go-live WebEx available for immediate response to questions, troubleshooting, and reporting issues. Students will begin activating their ctcLink accounts on Monday, March 1, just in time for spring registration which will begin on Wednesday, March 3.
On the horizon
With half of the state’s community and technical colleges live on ctcLink, all eyes are now on DG5 and DG6 colleges. Seventeen more colleges to go!
DG5 colleges are continuing their work on conversion activities. Bellevue College, Bellingham Technical College, Big Bend Community College, Everett Community College, Grays Harbor College, Green River College, Skagit Valley College, and Whatcom Community College will go live with ctcLink during fall quarter 2021, with dates in October to be determined.
DG6 colleges are well into their implementation activities toward a winter quarter 2022. Bates Technical College, Clover Park Technical College, Columbia Basin College, Lake Washington Institute of Technology, Renton Technical College, Shoreline Community College, South Puget Sound Community College, Walla Walla Community College, and Yakima Valley College comprise the largest and final deployment.