Operational Excellence

Operational Excellence 


As described in Jonathan See's First 100-Day Memo as Pepperdine's CIO, IT staff members are always striving toward operational excellence. As evidence of this commitment, below are a few projects completed in 2013 that have contributed to improving business processes and ensuring that the highest business standards are followed across the University.

New Online Module Greatly Reduces Credit Card Substantiation Process at Pepperdine

Earlier this year, Enterprise Information Systems (EIS) worked with Finance to fully automate the credit card substantiation process in PeopleSoft. This new module allows Pepperdine staff to view and approve credit card activity, update multiple transactions, and substantiate monthly expenses all online.

"The Credit Card Substantiation Project is a great example of how two departments can work together to change a manual process to an online process to work better for the entire University community," reflected David Brant, Assistant Controller at Pepperdine.

"With the implementation of the new online credit card substantiation process, there are no stacks of paperwork. All receipts are scanned. All the details are entered online and once submitted, it automatically goes to the next approver on the work list."

"There is accountability for everyone. Because of this, Finance's time for processing credit card substantiation has been reduced, and also the cardholders time for submitting their substantiation has been reduced."

"For Finance, this project has been a success and from the reaction of the cardholders, they think the new process is 100 percent better than the old one."

Device Management Service Introduces an Efficient Way to Keep University-owned Computers Up-to-date

In May 2013, IT announced an extension to its software patch service which patches Windows operating systems and Office applications automatically. This service, called device management, is part of IT's strategy to protect the Pepperdine community from computers being infected with viruses and malware.  Device Management now protects computers running either Mac or Windows operating systems. 

A major part of this project was coordinating with University colleagues to enroll all University-owned machines in the program. Through great teamwork, IT staff has successfully enrolled 2,472 University-owned machines, nearly 90 percent of the total population of University-owned machines. Phase I of device management successfully patched all enrolled computers with the latest Java, Flash, and Adobe Reader software. Phase II of device management will involve deploying Acrobat 11 Pro and Windows 7.

Visit the following link to learn more: http://community.pepperdine.edu/it/services/devicemanagement/

Remote Support Tool Provides Convenience for Pepperdine Faculty and Staff with Computer Issues

In November 2012, IT introduced the Remote Support tool, which allows IT staff to remotely conduct training, make presentations, and assist faculty and staff with technical requests. Throughout 2013, the Pepperdine community provided complimentary feedback about the tool.

IT technology liaison, Jason Eggleston, helped Dr. Mason Marshall of Seaver College with an unexpected computer problem right before Professor Marshall had to leave for a conference.

"The Remote Support tool is extremely helpful. I hope very much that Pepperdine will keep it," said Dr. Marshall. "When Jason used it for me the other day, I had only minutes left before I had to leave for the airport, headed to a conference to present a paper. If the problem on my computer hadn't been solved, I would have been in bad shape. Jason deserves the highest praise -- across the board (and not just with regard to the Remote Support Tool)."

EIS team member Rinn Dow was able to quickly and effectively assist Christell Neal of Student Services at the Graduate School of Education and Psychology without either of them leaving their desks.

"The tool is an easy way for IT to help and see what the problem is right away," said Christell Neal.

In 2014, IT hopes to use the tool to assist Pepperdine students with common computer issues.


MyID.pepperdine.edu Empowers You to Reset Your Own Password

In September 2013, the Information Technology division released a new and more secure self-service password reset system: myid.pepperdine.edu.  Historically, members of the Pepperdine community would need to call the Help Desk if they forgot their passwords to WaveNet, CAS, or other vital services.  Since September, however, Pepperdine faculty, staff, and students, have been able to click "Forgot Password" on these log-in pages and been directed to myid.pepperdine.edu, where they have been able to reset their own passwords.  This system not only has provided people with the freedom to reset, or change their own passwords at their own convenience, but also it has increased security by ensuring that only the authorized person on file is able to change the password.  Consequently, it is imperative that you verify that your correct and preferred contact information is on file.  You may do so by visiting myid.pepperdine.edu

A further benefit of the new system is the reduction in call volume to the Help Desk, which fielded more than 19,000 calls in 2012, a full 44% of which were password resets.  The reduction of call volume will allow the IT division to channel more resources into providing technology services and support.