Shared IT Services Update: Program Changes, Epic Readiness, and Unit Migrations Heading to the Danforth Campus


You may have heard; the Shared IT Services (SITS) Program announced some changes  heading into 2018. We’re here to tell you – the changes are good for us, as an organization, and for all customers that will have to go through the Shared IT Services implementation process.

We also know with change comes questions. As such, we want to ensure all WashU IT employees feel empowered with knowledge and accurate talking points regarding the program. Below you will find Q&A regarding these items from the perspective of being a WashU IT employee unfamiliar with the SITS Program.

Q: I heard the Shared IT Services Migrations are delayed. Is that true?
A: Shared IT Services Migrations were grouped into four waves—Wave I, Wave II, Wave III, and Wave IV. We are delaying Wave I, a wave comprised of clinical units, on the WashU School of Medicine campus (WUSM).  As we recalibrate to support active Epic implementations across WUSM, we will continue in our migration schedule and begin the migration process with Wave II. Wave II encompasses existing customer groups and begins on the Danforth Campus.

Q: I keep hearing this delay is done to be “Epic ready.” What does it mean to be Epic ready?
A: Epic is the new electronic medical record for WUSM and BJC. EPIC is a BJC lead initiative. We are adjusting our migration schedule to better support units preparing for their Epic go-live date. The official date all WUSM units should be live with Epic is June 2. We are realizing we will not be able to get to all departments in the Shared IT Services environment before that date. Because of this, we have modified the way we will implement across WUSM. We will continue forward with the two units in active Shared IT Services migrations—Department of Medicine and Neurology. We will complete the Shared IT Services discovery currently in process in the departments of Obstetrics & Gynecology and Pathology & Immunology, as well as with Washington University Orthopedics. In tandem, we will support the rest of the School of Medicine in getting the EPIC Citrix Receivers and technology on their machines. This is a key component to EPIC and we don’t want to disrupt that. Our primary focus with Wave I customers is to safeguard department stability, minimize disruption and ensure EPIC readiness and access for WUSM users.

Q: What about when customers ask about the other campuses?  
A: To restate, as we recalibrate to support active Epic implementations across WUSM in Wave I, we will continue in our migration schedule and begin the migration process with Wave II. Wave II encompasses existing customer groups and begins on the Danforth Campus. Shared IT Services Program leadership will be reaching out to start the process soon with Wave II discovery starting in the spring, as originally indicated. EPIC does not affect Danforth. Danforth users don’t require the EPIC Citrix receiver technology.

Q: Can I look at or share a schedule with customers when they ask?
A: Shared IT Services Program leadership will release an updated schedule in 4-to-6 weeks.

Q: My co-workers are being pulled onto the SITS Program. What changes are being made that require operations staff?
A: The Shared IT Services implementation teams are growing to meet user needs. We have brought on additional staff in three ways—through SITS staff transitions, through hiring, and through leaning in and tapping existing operational staff to shift to a program role.

These efforts are evident in a few ways. We’ve increased our implementation teams from three to four. We’ve also added desktop engineering talent to each implementation team to better triage user issues during migrations. As well, we’ve also pulled in additional incident management, project management, business analysts, and communications resources to help strengthen our efforts. The success of the Shared IT Services Program is priority for the WashU IT organization.

Lastly, we’ve reengaged global IT consultants to help solidify our processes around automating our discovery and imaging processes. We believe this will help with the accuracy and time it takes to complete unit migration and preserve the migration schedule.

Q: What should I say if my friends in local IT ask about not migrating their unit prior to Epic rollout
A: For WUSM units, not migrating doesn’t affect their access to Epic technology, The Epic Citrix Receiver is the solution for Epic readiness for ALL EPIC users. Those already migrated will need the same receiver as those who aren’t already migrated into Shared IT Services. The difference is migrated users who are using the receiver are using the Shared Services, while those not migrated and using the receiver will still be using the service they currently have until Wave I migrations begin again. This also means we will need to ensure a strong partnership with local IT in non-migrated units to get the receivers installed.

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