The stated objectives for this project were:
- remove the need for separate registration (as far as possible)
- change the authentication backend to use an existing username/password source e.g. AD or EASE
- provide a streamlined, single sign-on for Office 365 through MyEd
- improve consistency of usernames and passwords used to authenticate with EASE and AD and look at how we can reduce/avoid people being sent to the Home Realm Discovery page
The intention was to try and implement the above changes before the 16/17 session. The objectives were all met, and just within the timeframe mentioned.
In the project brief, the following deliverables were identified:
- A streamlined wireless service requiring no separate registration.
- Consistent usernames and passwords for wireless services with EASE and AD.
- A streamlined login process to Office 365 that eliminates, where possible, additional authentication requests especially when accessing the service through MyEd.
Again, each of these has been delivered via the project.
Benefits already enabled by the Project
It was reported to the project team, after the changes had been in place for a few weeks, that the Helpline were reporting a decline in the number of calls received around the issues that the work of this project had sought to address, and that it had been noted that accessing Office 365 through MyEd was now 'seamless'.
Analysis of Resource Usage:
Staff Usage Estimate: 1 days
Staff Usage Actual: 1 days
Staff Usage Variance: 0%
Other Resource Estimate: 1 days
Other Resource Actual: 1 days
Other Resource Variance: 0%
Explanation for variance:
All of the modifications under the scope of ENT002 were delivered successfully, with no change to this part of the project. The final sign-offs of what had been deployed (and formally closing the project) had to be moved out - largely because the MyEd/O365 changes ended up taking longer than originally planned.
No formal estimate was made for the whole project at the planning stage as large parts of the changes had been prepared before the formal planning sign-off.
Key Learning Points:
This project was delivering changes to primary services that are used daily and constantly by large numbers of students and staff, and so its impact was wide-ranging. Unfortunately, each of the modifications did not gel immediately and staff from USD reported difficulties with each change. While these were addressed relatively quickly, it did leave users exposed to services that were not working exactly as expected. An important lesson learned here was that better or wider-ranging testing should have taken place after each deployment to check that these worked as planned.
Update from 31/10 Lessons Learned meeting:
1. Testing of O365/MyEd changes was planned at short notice, and there was some confusion around the test plans and test environment. It would have helped to have someone with a holistic, overall view of how everything pieced together to advise members of project team on what was needed.
2. There was some confusion over the wireless changes that were implemented - what had been modified was not clear to USD staff and advice pages were not updated immediately.
3. The EASE changes were not fully tested on release (though the problem identified was resolved quickly) and should have been more clearly communicated to support staff.
The main lesson learned was that communications about the changes should have been better. This could have been done by the service owners in conjunction with the project manager, though it was acknowledged that the project team was successful in implementing the necessary changes in a relatively tightframe.
There are no outstanding issues around the various changes that have been deployed but there is still a 'Lessons Learned' meeting to take place with the major stakeholders. This had to be re-arranged and is now due to take place in late October.
Appropriate items from this meeting will subsequently be added to the Lessons Learned log.