Denise Lim, Team Leader
Marisa Honig
Kris Jaeger
Hoang Ong
Kate Riley, Facilitator

New Directions header
Quality Improvement in Financial Management at the University of Washington

Vol 1, No. 2
Summer 2002


New Warehouse to Increase Capacity, Accuracy of Data

ATA Team—A Cross-Departmental Success









by Denise Lim

After receiving final cost estimates from Computing and Communications and a “go / no-go” decision from V’Ella, GCA’s Grant Receivables Implementation Project Team (GRIP) hope to kick off their much anticipated project to implement a new receivables system. If all goes according to plan, the GRIP team will have their kick off meeting in early November.

Initial project preparation includes three specific activities: 1) hiring temporary staff to substitute for the project team members during the implementation, 2) finding space for the project team, and 3) performing a comprehensive planning and analysis of the receivable process.

For the next twelve months, the four GRIP team members will be working full time on this project. Thankfully, we were able to hire temporary assistance for these positions, which were open to internal candidates within Financial Management. We subsequently received numerous applications and the positions were filled within weeks! The new staff members started in GCA in early September and have been busy getting trained in their new positions.

A more difficult challenge we encountered was finding space for the project team. Space is tight in GCA and we thus had to come up with a creative solution. There were a handful of options, but none were ideal. Then, Student Fiscal Services (SFS) offered up a room up on the fifth floor of Schmitz which proved to be perfect for the project. The project team has moved in and is extremely appreciative for SFS’ kind offer of their space.

The team’s current task is to complete a planning phase for the new system. In order to do an efficient and thorough planning, we invited Kate Riley to lead us through a rapid planning workshop, which is a three-day event that documents the “as-is” process, as well as identifies an ideal workflow. Attendees included the project team, an advisory group consisting of various GCA staff members, representatives from Computing and Communications, and consultants from the vendor, J.D. Edwards.

As with all new teams, there were potential challenges that could have hindered the progress of our project team. However, by sharing resources (personnel and space) and knowledge (Kate’s experience in rapid planning workshops), the project team has gotten off to an excellent start and is looking forward to the kick off in November!

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