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Hi all, I’m in a new position at EDUCAUSE, and I’m hoping you can help me as I get started. I am looking for examples of best practices and great work in a few areas of enterprise/administrative IT, and I’m hoping this group might be able to point me to some. 1. Customization vs. standardization of enterprise/administrative systems and services. The decision either to customize an enterprise system to fit institutional needs or to adapt an institution's workflow and processes to fit the system is determined by a bunch of factors, including an institution’s culture, resources, expertise, etc. I’m looking for examples anywhere along that spectrum of how institutions choose their path in this area, and how that decision has played out. 2. Access vs. ownership. With options of the cloud and shared services comes a decision about control: how important is it to retain the kind of control over your systems that comes with hosting and managing them on site? Again, I’m looking for examples of institutions who have made decisions all along this spectrum. 3. Increasing value through analytics and business intelligence. Our enterprise/administrative systems contain a wealth of data that our institutions need for decision support and planning, to mention just a couple of areas. I’m looking for examples of institutions who are doing interesting things with their administrative systems that take them beyond operational work to provide strategic decision support through analytics and BI. Thanks for your help! Feel free to be in touch off list if you’d like. Betsy Betsy Tippens Reinitz Director, Administrative IT Programs EDUCAUSE Uncommon Thinking for the Common Good 1150 18th Street, NW, Suite 900 Washington, DC 20036 direct: 202.331.5348 | main: 202.872.4200 | ********** Participation and subscription information for this EDUCAUSE Constituent Group discussion list can be found at



I have spent nearly 20 years on the vendor side of the equation (PeopleSoft, Ellucian, Oracle) and these are common, but difficult questions.  Decision Lens ( is a unique tool to identify, discuss, and explore these questions in a collaborative environment.  Vendors and their advocates (consulting firms and the like) will effort to influence these answers to their benefit.  Having a tool like Decision Lens to act as an internal 'consultant' is something commercial (Johnson and Johnson) and the Federal government (entirety of the US Defense industry) uses to compare vendor solutions and prioritize projects.  Sorry for the commercial, but as higher education expenditures ($142B in 2012) continue to rise it is essential these procurement decisions extract maximum value.  After all, isn't some part of this money our own to be a faithful steward over?