Chasms and Bridges on the Path to a New Administrative System


Valparaiso University is nearing the completion of a three-year project to replace an eclectic collection of vendor-supplied and home-grown software with an integrated administrative information processing system. The project has been successful in the sense that most of the buildings and many of the working relationships have survived. We will trace our path across the chasms of needs analysis, request for proposals, evaluating the responses, selecting a vendor, training, and implementation; and reveal which ones we successfully bridged, which ones we crossed in a single bound (with or without airlift), and which ones we plummeted into. Our experiences may be reassuring to those who have already embarked on this journey, and useful as a planning and strategy resource to those who are about to.

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