FAQs

The Interoperability Transformation Initiative envisions a process and outcome of expansive scope, ubiquitous touch and tremendous impact. There will be many questions asked. This page will iterate and grow to include them. Ask your question here.

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What are the next steps in the Interoperability Initiative process?

Based on efforts to date and initial input from campus partners, we are drafting a report with recommendations for shorter-term efforts (3-9 months out), as well as mid- to long-term projects (9+ months into the future). This report will be shared and revised with campus partners and leadership, with the hope that short-term efforts could begin in March or April.

What peer institutions are we looking to who have achieved or are pursuing interoperability capabilities?

How will we know what success looks like for interoperability on campus?

Interoperability is not an end-state, but an ongoing process. We’re going to focus on employing agile methodologies to deliver incremental value to campus and refine iteratively based on campus feedback. See the Agile Bicycle illustration for a visual representation of agile processes.

How will we gain campus leadership support and broad-based buy-in for the Interoperability Initiative?

We will engage with campus in an ongoing capacity to ensure that we clearly understand needs and priorities and that we are designing solutions that align with those needs. An organizational change management plan will also be put in place to help leadership understand the value of this effort and to help campus with future transitions.

Will there be a cost for departments and other units to use interoperability services or tools?

Our expectation is that campus will provide funding for establishing and then sustaining an interoperability framework. Units would be responsible for funding any of their own development that incorporates these tools.

How will we ensure that researchers are able to use interoperability standards for sharing their data that will allow for collaboration without interrupting their workflow?

We envision an agile approach to developing our integration program and will ensure that our research community is part of our regular feedback loop.

How will we avoid “kicking the can” down the road by preserving current models and transferring data from one or more existing sources into a destination system?

We’ve heard from our external partners that Domain Driven Design is a critical component of establishing an interoperability program. We anticipate that this program will require us to model the business data and processes in discrete business domains and determine how to present standard interfaces to those domains rather than the current model of directly integrating with systems and data that should be considered internal to a business domain.

How will we engage campus in data cleanup (removal of duplicate and inaccurate data)?

Working through campus data governance, we anticipate that there will be efforts to define the reference model for core business objects that also defines how authoritative data is sourced, how it is maintained, and how quality and accuracy is assured.

How will we work with edge cases (situations where a faculty, staff or student is a non-traditional user)?

We envision a service model that allows campus to effectively manage the fact that a user can have multiple simultaneous relationships with the institution (e.g., student and employee) through definition and assignment of institutional roles. We recognize that a user may have multiple roles and their ability to access services should be based on the sum of all of their roles.

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