Requirement Analysis/rich picture | Custom PHD Thesis

Requirement Analysis/rich picture

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Requirement Analysis/rich picture

Order Description

There are 3 parts of the coursework part A,B and C. I will only need Part A of the coursework to be done. I don’t want the rest. Only Part A which is required 1000 words for it. All the other information is available on the coursework brief. Thanks

This coursework should take an average student who is up-to-date with tutorial work approximately 50 hours
Feedback and grades are normally made available within 15 working days of the coursework deadline
Learning Outcomes:
A. Evaluate different models of understanding information and data.
B. Appreciate the impact of organisational culture and world views on the development of information systems
C. Use and critically evaluate different approaches to requirements analysis and modelling.

Plagiarism is presenting somebody else’s work as your own. It includes: copying information directly from the Web or books without referencing the material; submitting joint coursework as an individual effort; copying another student’s coursework; stealing coursework from another student and submitting it as your own work. Suspected plagiarism will be investigated and if found to have occurred will be dealt with according to the procedures set down by the University. Please see your student handbook for further details of what is / isn’t plagiarism. Details are also on the Student Intranet.

All material copied or amended from any source (e.g. internet, books) must be referenced correctly according to the reference style you are using.

Your work will be submitted for electronic plagiarism checking. Any attempt to bypass our plagiarism detection systems will be treated as a severe Assessment Offence.

Coursework Submission Requirements
•    For this coursework there is an interim submission of a PDF due on Tuesday 22/02/2015. This interim submission is compulsory, and your work will be capped if you fail to submit it by the deadline.
•    An electronic copy of your work for this coursework must be fully uploaded by midnight on the Deadline Date of Tuesday 07/04/2015 using the link on the coursework Teachmat page for COMP1645.
•    For this coursework you must submit a single Acrobat PDF document.
In general, any text in the document must not be an image (ie must not be scanned) and would normally be generated from other documents (eg MS Office using “Save As .. PDF”). More details are on the IT Support pages . An exception to this is hand written mathematical notation, but when scanning do ensure the file size is not excessive.
•    There are limits on the file size (current values are on TeachMat and the Student Intranet).
•    Make sure that any files you upload are virus-free and not protected by a password or corrupted otherwise they will be treated as null submissions.
•    Your work will be marked online and comments on your work and a provisional grade will be available from the Coursework page on Teachmat. A news item will be posted when the comments are available, and also when the grade is available in BannerWeb.
•    You must NOT submit a paper copy of this coursework, or include the Banner header sheet.

Coursework Regulations
1.    If you have Extenuating Circumstances you may submit your coursework up to two weeks after the published deadline without penalty but this is subject to acceptance of your claim by the Faculty Extenuating Circumstances Panel.
2.    Late submissions will be dealt with in accordance with University Regulations.
3.    Coursework submitted more than two weeks late may be given feedback but will be recorded as a non-submission regardless of any extenuating circumstances.
4.    Do not ask the lecturers for extensions to published deadlines – they are not authorised to award an extension.
5.    All courseworks must be submitted as above. Under no circumstances can they be accepted by academic staff.
Please refer to the University Portal for further detail regarding the University Academic Regulations concerning Extenuating Circumstances claims.
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Important instructions
The case study contains a lot of information about the New Skill Set Gateway (NSSG) Case Study. In order to complete this coursework successfully you will need to abstract the important information – that is, decide what information is relevant to this assignment and what isn’t.
•    Do not use a previous student’s coursework as a basis for your work. It will be identified.

•    Any attempt to use other people’s material in your coursework, whether taken from a classmate or from another source, will result in you receiving a lower mark and possibly being awarded zero.

•    You should not need to reference journals/books/websites within this coursework – your discussions should relate to what you have found in the case study and/or what you have learnt as a result of undertaking the given activities. However, if you have found it necessary to use any other sources then you must reference them appropriately using the Harvard Method.

•    You will need to refer to information given in the case study. DO NOT copy information directly from the case study. Make sure that you rewrite it in your own words.

o    You have been warned: If you copy text directly from the case study this will result in you receiving a lower mark and possibly being referred for an Assessment Offence and being awarded zero.
o    You may include appropriate quotes from the case study if they support your argument. However, if you do this make sure that:
?    You use speech marks to indicate the quotes
?    Reference them by stating the page number of the case study
?    Use quotes sparingly – your mark will be reduced if your discussion consists largely of case study quotes.

•    Do not copy the whole case study into your report. Only submit the work you have completed.

Coursework summary
Using the attached case study, The New Skill Set Gateway (NSSG), you are required to:
•    Use Rich Pictures to analyse and model the environment from the perspective of NSSG Head Office.
•    Use Rich Pictures to analyst and model the environment from the perspective of the Easy Learn Organisation.
•    Produce a set of Business (or essential) Use Case models describing the current system used by the Easy Learn Organisation (including a use case diagram, primary/secondary scenarios)
•    Produce a Critique of Rich Pictures and Use Case modelling

A detailed list of what you are required to do and the deliverables is set out below.

Detailed specification

There are three parts to this coursework. Make sure that you complete all three parts.
Note that there are TWO compulsory deadlines associated with this coursework:

Interim deadline:     Sunday 22nd February 2015  –         You must upload Part A  by this
deadline
Final deadline:            Tuesday 7th April 2015               –         You must upload Part B and Part C by
this deadline

Part A – Requirements Analysis using Rich Pictures [35 marks]

A1.    Draw a Rich Picture from the perspective of  the New Skill Set Gateway (NSSG) Head Office.
[10 marks]
o    Use relevant information from any part of the case study to help you.  Remember, though, your Rich Picture should reflect the perspective of the New Skill Set Gateway Head Office.

o    Make sure that your submitted diagram is clear, readable and contains a key identifying the symbols you have used.  Hand drawn diagrams are preferred to computer generated diagrams. Do not spend hours making your Rich Picture look pretty, but make sure that it is readable.

A2.    Draw a Rich Picture from the perspective of the Easy Learning Organisation (ELO).
[10 marks]
o    Use relevant information from any part of the case study to help you.  Remember, though, your Rich Picture should reflect the perspective of the Easy Learning Organisation.

o    Make sure that your submitted diagram is clear, readable and contains a key identifying the symbols you have used.  Hand drawn diagrams are preferred to computer generated diagrams. Do not spend hours making your Rich Picture look pretty, but make sure that it is readable.

A3.    Demonstrate your understanding of the complete New Skill Set Gateway  (NSSG) environment
[15 marks]
o    As a result of developing your Rich Pictures:
?    Identify the key actors in the environment
?    Identify the key issues and areas of conflict affecting  the environment, suggesting reasons for these
?    Identify the cultures and sub-cultures within the environment
?    Discuss what you, as the analyst, believe to be the main focus of the system that the organisation requires
In completing this section, you should use examples from the case study to support your discussion. Your answer to this should be in the region of 1000 words

Part B –  Requirements Analysis using Use Case Modelling [45 marks]
Appendix B of the case study provides information about the current ELO course management system. Use this information and any other appropriate information from the case study to help you complete this part.
B1:    Draw a use case diagram for the system clearly identifying the actors and
Processes involved in the current ELO course management system.
[10 marks]

B2:    Document the use case diagram
[20 marks]
B2.1    Write the primary (or normal case) scenario for each business (or essential) use case in the system.
B2.2    For each of your primary scenarios,  identify the associated secondary scenarios that you think would exist– but do not write them out in detail

B3:   Demonstrate your understanding of Use Case Modelling as an aid to the     requirements gathering/analysis process
[15 marks]
As a part of this:
o    Discuss how developing your use case diagram helped you to:
?    identify the actors and processes taking place in the current system
?    clarify your understanding of the current system
?    identify aspects of the current system that require further investigation
o    Discuss how developing your secondary scenarios helped you to:
?    Identify whether your use cases were sensible and workable
?    Clarify the step-by-step actions of your use cases
o    Consider the assumptions you  made about the system in order to produce your use case model.
?    In real life what questions would you have asked to get the necessary information? Who would you have asked?

In completing this section, make sure you use appropriate from the case study to support your answers. Your answer to part B3 should be in the region of 1000 words.
Part C – Critique of Use Cases and Rich Pictures [20 marks]
As a result of the above activities, and based upon your experience of using these two techniques, write a critique comparing these two approaches to requirements analysis. Make sure that you address the following questions when writing your critique:
o    In what ways do these techniques help you, the analyst, at the early stages of requirements analysis?
o    What do these approaches have in common (if anything)?
o    What are the strengths/weaknesses of each approach?

Your answer to Part C should be in the region of 1000 words

Remember that this critique should be based upon your personal experiences and evaluation of the technique so you shouldn’t need to reference external sources. You must not just discuss Rich Pictures/Use Case Modelling approaches generally. However, if you have used any external sources at all then you must clearly reference any sources of information you have used to help you.

Deliverables checklist:

Submit a report containing the following:
Part A
•    Rich Picture from the perspective of  the New Skill Set Gateway Head Office, suitably annotated
•    Rich Picture from the perspective of the Easy Learning Organisation (ELO) perspective, suitably annotated
•    A discussion of  your understanding of the complete New Skill Set Gateway environment (in the region of 1000 words )

Part B
•    A properly annotated Use Case diagram of the current ELO course management system including primary and secondary scenarios
•    A discussion of your understanding of Use Case Modelling as an aid to the requirements gathering/analysis process (in the region of 1000 words)

Part C
•    A  comparison and discussion of rich pictures and use case modelling (in the region of 1000 words)

Grading and Assessment Criteria

70%-100%    You would be expected to:
•    show a thorough understanding of use case diagrams and rich pictures
•    demonstrate a clear ability  to abstract relevant information from given documentation
•    critically analyse the two approaches in relation to your personal experiences
•    bring clear examples from the case study
•    demonstrate a wide reading of the subject area
•    bring original thought to the argument
•    be fully referenced and formatted to an acceptable standard

60%-69%    You would be expected to:
•    show a good understanding of use case diagrams and rich pictures
•    demonstrate an ability to abstract sensibly from  given documentation
•    show critical understanding of the two approaches in relation to your personal experiences
•    give examples from the case study
•    demonstrate some reading of the subject area
•    bring some original thought to the argument
•    be fully referenced and formatted to an acceptable standard

50%-59%    You would be expected to:
•    show some understanding of use case diagrams and rich pictures
•    show some understanding of the critical issues in relation to the given documentation
•    Show some critical understanding of the two approaches in relation to your personal experiences
•    use the case study to show examples
•    demonstrate some reading of the subject area
•    be properly referenced and formatted

40%-49%    You would be expected to:
•    show an example of use case diagrams and rich pictures
•    show that you can model some parts of a system based upon given documentation
•    discuss the benefits of the two approaches in relation to your personal experiences
•    give relevant examples of from the case study
•    be properly referenced and formatted

The New Skill Set Gateway (NSSG) Case Study

New Skill Set Gateway (NSSG) Ltd

Overview
New Skill Set Gateway Ltd (NSSG) is the largest provider of skills training in the country. It is used by many employers to provide training for employees in a wide range of administration, IT and Finance/Accounting areas. Its courses range from hands-on training (such as introduction to Excel, Advanced Access) through to professional qualifications such as Microsoft Certified Professional, Cisco and the ACCA accounting award.

NSSG has 20 fully equipped training centres across the country where  employee training courses take place. Employers can book these courses online or by telephone. In addition to this, NSSG has developed ‘the learning gateway’. The learning gateway enables an individual to register/pay for, and study, appropriate courses online.

Six years ago, NSSG  invested heavily in IT and at the centre of this IT infrastructure is an online booking system known within the company as eBook. eBook schedules courses at the training centres and takes bookings for them either online directly from the employer or via the sales staff who take telephone bookings. The eBook system is also used to take payments, register attendance and produce certificates at the end of the course.

Two years ago a new Managing Director, Felicia LaBelle, was appointed to the organisation. She promised to improve profits and raise the company profile nationally by introducing cost efficiencies and expanding the business.

As a part of Felicia’s strategy the NSSG board identified the need to evaluate the performance of courses more systematically so that poor value or unsuccessful courses could be easily identified and measures taken to improve or discontinue them. In order to evaluate courses in a systematic way the board introduced a number of Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) against which each course would be evaluated on a three monthly basis.

Examples of the KPIs are: number of students booked on course, number of students who attend course, number of students who complete course, number of students who pass the course (where appropriate), number of students who would recommend this course to a friend, number of employers who book more courses.

The data for some of these KPIs is captured from the eBook system but some of it is captured from a satisfaction questionnaire that all students are now asked to complete at the end of their course (whether taken at a training centre or via the learning gateway). Employers who book training courses through NSSG are also asked to complete a satisfaction questionnaire which is used to support the collection of KPIs.
The course trainers and the training centre managers were very unhappy about the introduction of the KPIs. They felt that management did not understand the issues associated with the delivery of training courses and were evaluating the success or failure of a course purely on results and not on the wider learning objectives.

Last year, Felicia announced to her employees that in order to expand its profile, NSSG had bid for, and won, a new government training contract. Her announcement read:
“New Skills Set Gateway has won a key role in implementing the government’s ambitious new plan to improve the ‘life skills’ of those adults who are referred to in its ‘Looking Forward’ programme. NSSG is among six companies selected in a recent bidding process to provide the new ‘Looking Forward’ programme for those needing to improve skills in one of the essential categories identified by the government study”.
The essential skills categories that Felicia mentioned in her announcement are:
•    Adult literacy – teaching adults to read or to improve their reading
•    Adult numeracy – teaching adults numeracy skills to support everyday living
•    Industry sector skills development – teaching numeracy and literacy skills to employees in certain Industry sectors where these skills are often poor. For example, the construction industry
•    Parenting skills – helping parents from deprived areas to develop a range of skills to help support the development of their children

The ‘Looking Forward’ contract that NSSG won was to deliver adult literacy and  numeracy skills courses at a number of small skills centres to be set up across the country., They also won a contract to deliver a ‘Skills for the Construction Industry’ course for trainee plumbers, electricians and at  twenty different government colleges.

A key part of NSSG’s strategy to deliver the ‘Looking Forward’ programme was to acquire a number of smaller training companies who were already working in this area and integrate them into the NSSG organisation.

Six months ago Felicia announced that NSSG had now acquired five small training companies through which the ‘Looking Forward’ programme would be delivered. These companies would be known as ‘partners’ from now on. The next step she identified was to integrate the partners into NSSG so that the same business rules, processes and procedures and IT systems were used throughout. In order to undertake this integration she asked NSSG’s IT Manager, Johnny Golding, and IT Consultant, Hao Pun, to undertake an initial review of the IT systems used by the partners and to report back to the board with their findings.

Johnny back reported that the partners all had limited IT systems in place. Two of the them had single user booking systems, created in-house using Microsoft Access, which enabled an employee to record booking details and query course records using simple forms. Two of the partners had progressed further by accessing using simple online forms to enable students to enquire about courses online. One partner, however, only took telephone bookings and used an Excel spreadsheet to record course and student details. This company was The ‘Easy Learn Organisation’ (ELO).

Hao, additionally, reported to the board that the IT literacy of staff members in all five training companies was low and that it would be a mistake to roll out NSSG’s eBook system to them. He reported that eBook is a sophisticated Course Booking and Management Information System that meets the needs of a large commercial training organisation. However, in his opinion, a good initial solution to introducing IT systems to the partners would be the development of a locally installed simplified booking and course management system that could upload also upload required data to eBook at appropriate intervals.

Johnny Golding did not agree with Hao’s report and told the board that it would be a waste of time and money to develop a course management system especially for the partners.
However, NSSG’s executive board agreed with Hao’s recommendations and it was agreed that ELO would be used as the pilot for the development of the partners’ system. A Consultant Business Analyst, Carrie Johnson,  was commissioned to undertake a series of interviews with NSSG’s Head Office staff and with ELO staff before proposing an initial solution.

The ‘Easy Learn Organisation’ partner – background
ELO was identified as a potentially useful training company by NSSG because of the award winning work they have undertaken in the support of improving adult literacy and numeracy skills in the long term unemployed. ELO is a ‘social enterprise company’ – this means that a high percentage of the profits is reinvested in the business each year in order to improve the services it can provide.

ELO has a small Head Office staffed by three full time members of staff. These staff members deal with Course Management, Human Resources, Finance and any other administrative matters that may arise.
Courses take place at a variety of locations across the country: Courses are held in local colleges, in community centres and libraries. ELO rents the teaching rooms on an hourly basis so keeps costs down as much as possible.

The tutors for these courses are all employed on an hourly rate. Many of the tutors are retired Maths Teachers and retired English Teachers who work for ELO on a part-time basis. The tutors who work for ELO are all committed to helping their ‘clients’ – adults needing support with the development of their literacy and/or numeracy skills.

The tutors rarely visit the Head Office in person – any communication with Head Office is via email, phone or post.  However, there are 10 ELO regions in the country and each region has a regional coordinator. The regional coordinator holds a monthly update meeting with all his/her tutors and at these meeting issues are raised and any information from Head Office is discussed.

ELO run six main courses –  Basic Literacy, Improving Literacy, Advanced Literacy, Basic Numeracy, Improving Numeracy and Advanced Numeracy.
The content of these courses was originally developed by Chris Paxton, the Managing Director, five years ago. The course content is reviewed on a yearly basis and feedback from the tutors is used to help develop new course content.

Obviously, the courses have to be funded or the organisation will not be able to continue. However, ELO has always been committed to the belief that courses for the ‘clients’ (those adults needing help with their literacy or numeracy skills) should be free for them to join. ELO has traditionally received funding from many different sources to enable them to run the courses. For example over the last two years, ELO has received funding from central government, local government and from several charitable trusts.

As a result of cutbacks within the country, ELO has found it increasingly difficult to get funding and Chris Paxton has been considering cutting some of the courses. In addition to this, funders now want to know how their money is being spent and keep asking him to produce reports justifying whether a course has been ‘successful’ or not. This been a big worry for Chris as it requires a lot of time and administrative resources to compile these reports.  Therefore, when Chris was approached by NSSG with a view to selling the company he felt that this would be an excellent way to protect the future of the numeracy/literacy courses – the government ‘Looking Forward’ programme will guarantee funding for a long time to come.

Felicia LaBelle assured Chris that he would continue to manage the courses/tutors currently run by ELO and that, although there would have to be some changes to make sure that ELO could integrate seamlessly with NSSG, things would mainly continue as before.

However, with a month of the takeover by NSSG, Chris and his tutors were informed that an in-depth review was being undertaken to gather requirements for a partners’ course management system.  An IT consultant would be visiting ELO to interview Head Office staff and some of the local tutors. The aim of these interviews would be  to(a)  understand their issues and concerns and to (b) identify the important business processes required to support course development, course management and the funding of the courses.

ELO were warned that they would have to start using the new online/telephone course booking management system before the ‘Looking Forward’ programme went live in 6 months time.

Chris Paxton sent an email explaining about the review to his Head Office staff and tutors and they were all shocked and angry to hear about the imminent changes. The general feeling among the staff was that the NSSG management were only interested in making money and that the whole culture of ELO would change if they were forced to use ‘corporate’ information systems.

The Pilot study review interviews
Firstly, a Consultant Business Analyst, Carrie Johnson, interviewed key staff at NSSG Head Office.
Next, she visited ELO and interviewed the Managing Director, a member of the Head Office staff, a regional tutor coordinator and a course tutor.
A summary of the interviews he held with NSSG Head Office can be found in Appendix A.
A summary of the interviews he held with ELO staff can be found in Appendix B.

Appendix A –The Pilot Study Review Interviews – NSSG Head Office

The following are relevant extracts from a number of interviews that have taken place with key staff at NSSG Head Office.

Felicia LaBelle (Managing Director – NSSG)
I’ve been at NSSG for two years now. Although the organisation was making good profits working with the commercial sector, I thought that they were a bit complacent and needed a good old shake up. When the government tender for ‘Looking Forward’ was announced I realised that would be a brilliant thing for us to get involved with. Firstly, it will give us the opportunity to expand into the public sector and, secondly, it will give us a steady stream of income from the government purse. The board haven’t been as supportive as I thought they would be. They are so cautious and wanted us to carry on working with the private sector only. What they don’t realise is that you need an entrepreneurial spirit these days. I was the Managing Director for three Internet start-up businesses before I agreed to give NSSG the benefit of my extensive experience. I’m sorry but I’m not going to be pushed about by long term employees such as Johnny Golding and Ken Wong. They are going to have to get used to things they way they are now.

Some of the partners are becoming a bit of a headache now as well. I, personally, spent a lot of time talking to Chris Paxton and assuring him that if he became a partner it would be a really positive move for ELO. Now I’ve had a complaint from him on behalf of his staff saying that we are completely changing their identity. They are really resistant to change and don’t see the point of KPIs or the need for a new IT system. I hope that the other Partners aren’t going to be as difficult or it could delay the whole project. As I’ve now entered into a number of contracts with the government I’ve no choice but to start the project on time: If we don’t deliver as we have agreed then we will be fined a lot of money because of the penalty clauses in the government contract.

Johnny Golding (IT Manager – NSSG)
I’ve worked for NSSG since 1990. It was a small organisation then and I’ve seen it grow into what it is today. I pride myself on knowing what’s going on but recently I feel that I’m being cut out the loop. Nobody has listened to my views on the partners’ IT development. I still feel that we should just roll out eBook to them they will soon get the hang of it.

I was the driving force behind the development of eBook. If it wasn’t for me  the company would still be using an old fashioned system and we wouldn’t take the number of online bookings that we now deal with.
I’ve put so much into eBook and the organisation generally that I thought the board would listen to my views and not just push them to one side. I don’t even know why we have engaged an IT consultant – what a waste of money. He has deliberately taken the opposite view to me regarding the use of eBook and the board have listened to him instead of me.

I don’t think we should be wasting our time interviewing staff at ELO either. They don’t know what they need – they are all IT illiterate as far as I can see. IT systems should be left to the experts!

Between me and you, I think that NSSG have done the wrong thing taking on these new partners. They are all so different and will really need managing carefully. Felicia is just trying to prove that she is worth the salary they are paying her – I can see it all being a complete disaster.

Ken Wong (Finance Director – NSSG)
To be honest, we desperately need to sort out the way in which the Partners’ collect their KPIs. We are going to have to justify the government funding we spend on these projects and we have targets to meet which, frankly, are ridiculous. I don’t why Felicia and the board took the decision to go for this bid.

Essentially we are a commercial company and we make a good profit as a training provider for many well-known organisations. Getting involved in the literacy/numeracy training areas seems like a recipe for disaster to me.

I was really surprised when Felicia was made Managing Director. She seems to have very little commercial experience. She just won’t listen to what any of the management team tell her – every week she goes to the board meeting, lets everybody have their say and then just completely ignores them.

I am going to have to set up new financial systems at Head Office to make sure that we can account for all the government funding we receive. The KPIs they have given us are really comprehensive and we are going to have to gather the data from the Partners’ somehow. This is all extra work for me and I don’t know how I’m expected to do it. A new financial system is also going to cost us a lot of money so I don’t think we will even end up making any profit as a result of getting involved with the ‘Looking Forward’ programme.

One of the key things that the Partners’ system must do is send Finance a report giving all the KPIs at the end of each month and then at the end of each course. If the system they get doesn’t do this then we will be in big trouble

Hao Pun – (External IT Consultant)
Felicia LaBelle asked me to undertake a review of the IT systems of the new Partners to see whether they were compatible with those of NSSG. I have to say that I was really surprised to see how the Partners have been using IT up to now. By far the most IT-illiterate organisation is ELO but the others aren’t far behind. Unless new systems are put in place pretty quickly then I don’t see how NSSG is going to be able to deliver the things that it agreed to deliver as part of the Government contract.

Johnny Golding totally disagrees with me about the approach we should take. I found him to be a really difficult person to work with – he obviously resents my presence at NSSG and thinks that I am trying to take his job away from him! His attitude is making it very difficult for us to move forward with an IT policy for the Partners and I had to raise this with the board. Fortunately, thanks to Felicia’s support, the board agreed with my proposal to develop a  simpler ‘Partners’ IT system and integrate that with eBook.

As far as I can see NSSG has an ingrained culture built up over a number of years and perpetuated by the staff that have worked here for a long time. Those staff resent Felicia because she has come into the company with big new ideas and wants to shake things up a lot. In addition to this, each of the new ‘partner’ organisations works in its own way and has its own culture or identity. I don’t think that Felicia realises how difficult it is going to be to integrate all of these sub cultures together to create a company that can work together and drive the business forward. If she isn’t careful that whole thing will be a complete disaster. I’ve seen this happen in a lot of organisations and it’s not something I really want to be involved with. As soon as another contract comes my way I will be on my way!

Appendix B –The Pilot Study Review Interviews – ELO Head Office

Chris Paxton (Managing Director – ELO)
To be honest, I am having doubts my decision to become a partner with NSSG. I think that my organisation has a very different culture to them. We pride ourselves on the ‘personal touch’. We work closely with our clients to help them improve their literacy and numeracy skills. We have won the ‘innovative social enterprise of the year’ award  three years running. This year I was presented with the award by the Prime Minister. My staff don’t want to have to collect questionnaires and enter data into a system about the performance of a client or the success of a course. They are all highly skilled individuals who aren’t paid a lot of money. They work for ELO because they want to help people, not because they want to make a big profit for a faceless organisation.
The tutors are really upset and, unless things are handled better in the future, then I will lose a lot of my staff.
The staff members at ELO Head Office are also really upset. They work in their own way and they get results. All three members of staff have been with me since I started ELO fifteen years ago. They are all nearing retirement and don’t want to learn new ways of working. We don’t need fancy information systems to record data and produce reports. I just don’t know how this is going to work!!
I had a meeting with Felicia last week and she more or less said that our way of working is old fashioned and that the way forward is to think about budgets and profits. We had a huge row about whether education services should be operated in the same way as a commercial business. My view is that education can’t be turned into a balance sheet. Her view is that you can make a profit out of anything – she is only interested in making cuts and streamlining services. I feel that she misled me in our initial discussions and now my staff blame me – they think that by selling ELO I will be walking off with a big payout. The reality is that nothing could be further from the truth.

Alison Marshall (Senior Administrator – Head Office ELO)
Well, firstly, the Adults we help on our courses are known as our ‘clients’ and not as ‘students’. We want don’t want them to feel as if they are back in school.

I’ve worked for ELO for fifteen years now and I know everybody really well. We all work together as a little team and there is a really friendly atmosphere here. I don’t like the sound of a new IT system at all. To be honest, I wouldn’t know how to use it. I hate technology – I can just about use my mobile phone to send a text message!

At the moment I use spreadsheets for storing a lot of the information I keep about courses. I designed them with the help of my granddaughter who is a Computing Science student at university.
I keep at spread sheet for each instance of each course we run. Each spread sheet has a unique name that I have devised. For example, the basic literacy course starting in April 2014 in region 1 at the main library from 5-7pm they will be named ‘BL_Apr2014_Region1_ML_5-7. It’s a really simple system and it works for me.

Clients find out about our courses through the leaflets that we leave in libraries, community centres and at the JobShop. They are also told about them through word of mouth. If somebody is interested they will phone Head Office and Freddie, who works for me, will take the call. He will use a spreadsheet to book the client on to one of the courses that will be starting in the next three months. If a course has just started he will try to book the client on to that and he will then phone/email the regional coordinator with the client’s details.
When a client books onto a course Freddie gives them the details over the phone and also sends out a letter.
Freddie is in charge of sending the spreadsheet for each course to each regional coordinator two weeks before the course is due to start.

At the end of each month the regional coordinators send me their monthly course reports. I update each spreadsheet with the attendance details and progress details that are included in these. I don’t know who fills these spreadsheets in – I expect it is the tutor but Selina will be able to tell you – she is really efficient.

At the end of each course I go through each spreadsheet and I produce a certificate for each client who has completed a course. This takes ages. I tried to do a merge with Word once but it went horribly wrong so now I complete a certificate template that I have in Word for each client and send it to the printer. I then post the certificates to the clients.

If a client has passed the course (the spreadsheet shows that the client may ‘proceed’) then Freddie will phone them and book them onto the next course – assuming they want to continue. He will then give the client details of the new course.

In terms of managing the courses, my colleague Raghu deals with that side of things, although I help him out if he is really busy or has a problem that he cannot solve.

Courses run every three months and each course starts in the same week of the month. Unless something goes wrong, the same location/time is used every time an instance of a course runs. We tend to use the same community centres and libraries all the time so the rooms are always reserved for us on particular days at particular times. Occasionally, we have to find a new location for a course but this doesn’t happen very often.

I feel really unhappy about being taken over by this big commercial training organisation. As far as I can see we are just going to be swallowed up and we will lose our identity and good reputation. A few weeks ago a self-important person from their Head Office came over for the day. I got the impression that they disapproved of all our current business processes and work practices. I was made to feel really inadequate and I’m not sure that I have a future here any more.

Selina Ali (Regional Tutor – ELO)
What do we need for this system? We need everyone to do things the way we do here in my region. I’ve set up my own questionnaire and my tutors give it to the clients at the end of the course. Nobody asked me to do this – I just wanted to know how well the courses in my region were running. I send the results of my questionnaire analysis to Head Office at the end of every course but I don’t know what they do with them.  I don’t think any of the other regions use questionnaires at the moment…..

Each course runs for 12 weeks and all courses start at the same time. Two weeks before the start of a course I receive a series of spreadsheets from Head Office. There is a spreadsheet for each course that is running in my region during the next 12 week period. This spreadsheet lists the  personal details of the clients who are have been booked on to it by Head Office. The spreadsheet also details the location of the course. Usually the courses run in the same locations every time but, occasionally this may change. For example, last year one of the libraries that we had used for years was closed down to save money and so Head Office had to find somewhere else for use to run our courses. My tutors teach the same class every twelve weeks so I automatically assign the tutor to that class when I receive the appropriate spreadsheet.
Sometimes a client may join a course just before it starts or even in the first or second week of the course. When this happens I update the spreadsheet and send a new copy to the tutor.
The tutor uses the spreadsheet as a register so it is important that all the names are recorded.

As a Regional Coordinator I am required to meet with my tutors (I have 5 in my region) once a month. At these monthly meetings we discuss each course that is currently running and any problems that the tutors have. I take minutes of the meeting and I send them round to the tutors within one week of the meeting. We call these minutes the ‘monthly review report’. I also send a copy of this report to Head Office.

In addition to this, each tutor sends me a ‘monthly course report’ on the last day of each month. The tutor sends me a ‘monthly course report’ for each course that he/she runs. This report contains the attendance register for that month, a monthly progress grade for each client (excellent, very good, good, fair, requires more support) and any notes about a particular client (for example, a client may not have been attending because he/she has been unwell). I collate all of these reports and send them to Head Office at the same time. I am supposed to send them by the 5th day of each month but some of the tutors are really bad at sending them in and I have to keep asking for them.

Each course lasts for 12 weeks. At the end of each course the tutor sends me  a ‘Course End Report’. This report contains the final grades for each student (Excellent, very good, good, fair, requires more support) and a recommendation for next steps (proceed to next course, repeat this course, has completed all courses). I forward these reports to Head Office as they arrive.
My tutors also send me the completed questionnaires that were distributed to the clients in the last week of term and I analyse the results.

I know that everybody else is moaning but I’m really looking forward to working as part of a commercial training company. I see it as an opportunity to showcase my skills and, hopefully, gain promotion. To be honest, I think that ELO is old fashioned in its outlook and needs a good shake case. Obviously, it is difficult to say this in front of my colelagues but, as this is a confidential interview, I don’t mind telling you that I’m looking forward to the changes ahead.

Patience Mbewe (Tutor – Adult Literacy Programme)
I have been working as a tutor for about five years and I love my job. I don’t get paid very much and I couldn’t care less about IT booking systems and KPIs. I will continue doing what I do and if I don’t like the new system I will leave – I have my pension and plenty of other things to do!
At the moment, I keep the paperwork to a minimum. I fill in a couple of reports for Selina once a month, I take a register at each course and I give out a questionnaire at the end of each course. I don’t see what else needs to be done!
I love working with my clients and to me that’s what the job is all about!

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