uoCampus: Our keep-it-simple choice

Our student information system solution, uoCampus, has been developed so as to minimize customization. This has allowed us to stay as close as possible to the delivered system and benefit from industry best practices.

Benefits

Less customization means easier upgrades

Some systems are so customized that maintenance and upgrades are very challenging, even impossible. Each upgrade means going back into the system and reapplying the custom codes everywhere they were entered. As a result, many universities stick with older versions of their student information system because it’s too difficult and expensive to upgrade. We have avoided this.

Better access to the broad PeopleSoft Campus Solutions (PSCS) community knowledge base

Because uoCampus is closer to the delivered solution, we can benefit more from the broad PSCS community knowledge base (e.g., end-user forums). We will have wider access to subject matter experts outside of the University and also have more people internally able to understand and explain the system to fellow employees. The system will not be the exclusive domain of a few people who could leave with their knowledge at any time.

With other universities using the same product, we can speak as one voice to Oracle

As uoCampus is as close as possible to the delivered solution, it furthers a common language among the PeopleSoft Campus Solutions community. We will be using the same terminology (e.g., terms, checklists, milestones) as the majority of universities.
In addition, having a broad community using the delivered solution makes us stronger when suggesting system improvements or discussing system challenges. This could lead to Oracle developing new or enhanced functionalities for all universities.

We’ll have opportunities to optimize and review our system to benefit from universities’ best practices

Oracle’s delivered solution has been developed based on experience gained through implementations in many universities. We have adopted their best practices to improve our own processes and regulations. As well, Oracle makes major investments in Campus Solutions to provide customers with regular improvements and new functionalities. Moving away from the delivered solution by adding customization would have limited our potential to take advantage of them.

Reduced test time before go-live and easier support

The delivered functionalities have already been thoroughly tested by the vendor and other clients. The lack of complex customized configurations reduces testing. Customization leads to uncharted territory, requiring more test time before go-live and during sustainment. Each time an update is installed, every customization has to be thoroughly tested again.

Full vendor support

By limiting customization, we ensure better support from our vendor, Oracle. We avoid scenarios where Oracle can’t help us because of a highly customized system that doesn’t reflect the original solution.

Our approach

Here is a visual description of the process used for each business requirement. It helped us determine whether to use delivered functionalities or customize.

Decision Tree: Each business requirements was througly assessed to decide wether to use PeopleSoft delivered functionalites or customize. Each case for customization was reviewed and assessed by the project governance team. Depending on the nature of the impact, decisions were made at different levels (project management, executive owners or steering committee).

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