New and Changing: Updates from AIT

Posted August 23, 2017 by
Tags: Upgrades

No Ordinary Upgrade: Banner 9

Starting December 31, 2018 our current version of Banner will no longer be supported by the vendor. In preparation for that, over the next year and a half we will transition from Banner 8 to Banner 9, which provides powerful new capabilities that have a fresh look and feel for the end user and provide automated workflow between business units.

Rationale

What is Banner?

Ellucian Banner is our enterprise resource planning (ERP) system for Finance and Accounting, Human Resources, Students, Advancement, Financial Aid, and Recruiting and Admissions. Products that rely on these systems include the Portal, Degreeworks, TouchNet, Schoology, and more.

Wheaton College has used Ellucian Banner for the last 20 years. We used the system as it was originally adopted, making very few changes along the way. This has resulted in our inability to use Banner more fully as it is now designed.

Over the past two years, it has become increasingly apparent that the current Banner system implementation is unable to support our efforts to increase efficiencies through automation, and readily access data for the purpose of decision making and reporting. Today, Wheaton College has a much more collaborative environment and a better understanding of data flow between departments than we did when Banner was adopted. Additionally, we are currently sustaining and paying for alternate systems to perform tasks that Banner 9 is designed to handle.

Why Banner 9?

As Ellucian Banner has continued to improve their product, they have invested heavily in further improving the functionality and end user experience. In 2016, they announced a complete redesign of the user interface, which they are calling “Banner 9.”

With this redesign, they have announced that they will no longer support previous versions of Banner after December 2018. The transition from our current version of Banner to Banner 9 is a complete system upgrade that is much more complex than we currently have, requiring a review of the business processes with each administrative area.

Key Features and Benefits

  • Improved management of personnel and finances
  • During this upgrade, we will also evaluate and make adjustments to processes that should make your work lives better

Strategy Alignment

In light of this significant system change, we have established a Banner Revitalization Leadership Committee to oversee and champion the strategic decisions that will be required to move forward with this change. This committee includes:

Karen Belling | Director of Student Financial Services
Jane Bilezikian |Director of Advancement Service
Paul O. Chelson | Vice President for Student Development
Dustin W. Di Santo | Director of Graduate Admissions
Dale A. Kemp | Vice President for Finance and Operations, Treasurer
Peggy S. King | Registrar
Craig Squire | Controller
Karen Tucker | Director of Human Resources
Craig Williams | Academic & Institutional Technology
Wendy Woodward | Chief Information Officer

This initiative directly aligns with our current Technology Plan. Specifically, “Effort must be made to leverage this investment by better understanding its capabilities and how they can positively impact the College; deploying more automation and workflow capabilities; documenting the system processes and workflows so that other staff members can be more easily trained; and working cross-organizationally to take full advantage of available resources.”

The College has retained a consulting group Strata Information Group (SIG) to support our transition.

Impact on College Community

  • The screens you use in Banner’s self-service module will look different and be more user-friendly
  • Over the next year and a half, you will begin to see incremental changes to systems that are on the Banner platform
  • We will communicate upcoming changes to specific services that will affect you
  • Businesses will announce relevant changes to the processes enabling us to better leverage the Banner systems
  • Stay tuned for information about upcoming relevant training as it is available

Timeline | Check Back for Updates

September 25, 2017 | HR Self-Service release
September 11, 2017
| Kick-Off Meeting with SIG on Campus

If you have any questions or concerns, please contact Academic and Institutional Technology at ait.service.desk@wheaton.edu or call 630.752.4357 (HELP).