IN THIS ISSUE
- An Overview
- Words & Terms
- Friday Closures
- Important Upcoming Dates
As Bellevue College approaches the start of the Fall quarter, we thought it might be helpful to review some frequently asked questions about ctcLink.
At its most basic core, ctcLink is the implementation of a single, centralized suite of online tools. It provides students, faculty and staff on-demand access to a modern and efficient way of doing their daily college business.
ctcLink replaces a number of legacy systems, such as the Financial Management System (FMS), Student Management System (SMS) and Payroll/Personnel Management System (PPMS). It will help Washington’s community and technical college system (CTCs) as a whole streamline and standardize the way colleges do business today.
However, it is about much more than new software. ctcLink is an unprecedented business transformation project for all 34 colleges and the State Board agency. It will bring lasting change to the way the SBCTC and colleges do business locally and together as a system.
WHAT EXACTLY IS CTCLINK?
Once fully implemented, ctcLink will create a single, centralized system of online functions, providing modern online services — anytime, anywhere — to all faculty, staff and students of Washington’s community and technical colleges.
Commonly called an Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system, ctcLink will provide a set of interconnected software modules to help us streamline and standardize many of the things we do at our college today.
The software modules will cover core administrative processes such as registration and course management, financial aid, financial services and human resources.
WHEN IS CTCLINK BEING IMPLEMENTED?
Moving to ctcLink is a very large, very complex project. All told, 34 institutions and the office of the Washington State Board for Community and Technical Colleges (SBCTC) will be migrating to the new system.
Due to the magnitude of the project, the implementation is happening in six deployment groups. BC is part of Deployment Group 5 (DG5), which will go live on November 8, 2021.
WHAT IS THE “CTC” IN CTCLINK?
The “ctc” stands for community and technical colleges. ctcLink is the name that was chosen for the system replacement (actually running PeopleSoft software) by all of Washington’s community and technical colleges.
The project involves more than just new software. As the existing legacy software is replaced with modern technology, colleges will also work to align current business processes, making for streamlined, standardized practices across the 34-college system.
WHY IS THIS PROJECT NECESSARY?
The current administrative systems are old and outdated. They were developed in the early 1980s by the Washington community and technical college system and use database and reporting tools that are no longer supported.
These systems have no long-term support options and are at risk of failing. While we have been able to keep them working this long, it becomes more and more expensive to do so over time, and is not a long-term solution to our needs.
WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS OF CTCLINK?
ctcLink will be a massive upgrade for the entire community and technical college (CTC) system. Faculty, staff and students will have access to information from anywhere at any time.
Students will use modern online tools for doing their college business, and they’ll have a more common experience across the CTC system, whether they transfer from one college to another or attend two or more CTCs at once. They will have one student ID and use common online tools for everything from admission to graduation.
Among many other things, colleges — and the system as a whole — will benefit from a single source for accurate and timely data and the standardization of select administrative processes to support efficiency and effectiveness across the system.
WHICH LEGACY SOFTWARE SYSTEMS ARE BEING REPLACED BY CTCLINK?
- Financial Aid Management (FAM): The Financial Aid Management system administers and manages financial aid functions for Washington state community and technical colleges.
- Financial Management System (FMS): The Financial Management System administers and manages financial and accounting functions for Washington state community and technical colleges.
- Payroll/Personnel Management System (PPMS): The Payroll/Personnel Management System manages the human resources and payroll processing functions required by the colleges and collects the information necessary to manage this large group of employees.
- Student Management System (SMS): The Student Management System is used to administer and manage all student and curriculum related business functions for Washington state community and technical colleges.
Some applications that use the data from these back-end systems will also be replaced in the process. These include, but are not limited to, Degree Audit, Instructor Briefcase and TLR (time and leave reporting).
WILL WE BE ABLE TO ACCESS SMS, FMS, PPMS QUERIES?
DataExpress/ByRequest functionality will be replaced by PeopleSoft reporting tools. The college will identify and train a core group of users who will work with colleagues at the SBCTC and other colleges to develop these reports.
Staff and faculty will be able to run the reports as needed to fulfill their job duties.
HOW FAR BACK WILL THE DATA IN THE NEW CTCLINK SYSTEM GO?
At this point, the plan is for the ctcLink system to include all enrollment data for students who have been actively enrolled during the past three years.
Personnel and payroll data will be converted for employees who have been actively employed during the past year. Financial transaction data will be converted for the current fiscal year only.
Older data will remain available in the legacy system in a read-only version, and some will be available in a data warehouse.
WHAT WILL HAPPEN TO THE INFORMATION IN THE LEGACY SOFTWARE SYSTEM WHEN WE GO LIVE ON CTCLINK?
The legacy information will be put into a read-only mode and will be accessible through the legacy software for a time. Staff will be able to access the data but will not be able to make changes.
At some point, after all colleges have migrated and the new system is stabilized, the legacy software will be retired, but the historical data will continue to be available (though other avenues) for reporting purposes.
WORDS & TERMS
While you learn and work with ctcLink and its software, PeopleSoft, you’ll come across a number new words and terms. Each week, we will feature a few of them in the Thursday Dispatch.
Campus Solutions (CS) – One of the three main working systems (referred to as “pillars”) in the Peoplesoft software that runs ctcLink. Campus Solutions (CS) manages student administration, including admissions, financial aid and student records. It will replace the Student Management System (SMS), Financial Aid Management (FAM) and Degree Audit.
Finance (FIN) – Another of the three main working systems — or pillars. Finance (FIN) will support all of our business processing and will replace the Financial Management System (FMS).
Human Capital Management (HCM) – The last of the three pillars. Human Capital Management (HCM) will house all HR-related functionality and will replace the Personnel and Payroll Management System (PPMS).
go live vs. Go-Live – The first day a college begins to use ctcLink as its system of record.
- Verb: We are getting ready to go live on ctcLink PeopleSoft.
- Noun: The webpages are being updated in time for Go-Live.
- Adjective: The go-live preparations are underway.
Empl ID – This is a single identification number for each person record, regardless of whether the person is a student, staff or faculty. Even if a person has multiple roles at multiple campuses, they will still have just one Empl ID (also written as EMPLID).
We’re hiring to support staff and students throughout the ctcLink transition. Current part-time employees are encouraged to apply to supplement their current hours. Students and faculty, too!
Training will be provided. Click here for details.
Are you interested in how BC is communicating with students regarding the transition to ctcLink? Click here to go to the student section of the ctcLink website. You’ll be able to read the latest news and communications.
IMPORTANT UPCOMING DATES
Take note of the following dates. They have a campus-wide impact.
Sept. 15 – Suggested final day for admissions to ensure all entry procedures are completed by the start of Fall quarter
Sept. 22 – Financial aid will begin to be disbursed
Sept. 23 – Final Day for P-Card transactions
Need more information on ctcLink? It can be found on our website.ctcLink Website
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Last Updated September 25, 2021