Running Head: [CJIT] Department Plan

UNIVERSITY OF MARYLAND, UNIVERSITY COLLEGE

GRADUATE SCHOOL OF MANAGEMENT & TECHNOLOGY

MANAGEMENT PROJECT

Computer Systems Management
(Information Resources Management)

[CJIT] Department Plan

REPORT

Susan M. Anstead Leiby

May 1, 2001


 
DISCLAIMER

References to the actual department and local government studied in this project have been removed after the author received an email stating, "The [Unnamed Local Government] has very strict policies on when we are allowed to use the [Unnamed Local Government]'s name in papers that are published or listed on the Internet."  As a result, I have changed all references to the department name to [CJIT] and all references to the local government to [Unnamed Local Government].  All research, discussion, and conclusions in this report remain unaffected by this required change.  Should you have any questions, please contact the author, Susan Anstead Leiby
 

TABLE OF CONTENTS



Abstract -- Executive Summary
Introduction
Background and Context
Statement of Problem/Opportunity
Literature Review
Strategic Planning/Mission
Teams
Approach and Methodology 
Constraints and Limitations
Mission Statement Development
Sample Mission Statements
Corporate
Government Technology Departments
[Unnamed Local Government] Mission Statements
Definition of Customers
Customer Needs
Proposed [CJIT] Mission Statement 
Recommendations
Improving Communications
In/Out Board
Lotus Notes
Recommendations
Job Roles
Recommendations
Project Management
Recommendations
Teambuilding
Recommendations
Final Summary and Evaluation
Bibliography
Appendices
A -- Information Technology Goals and Principles
B -- Customer Survey
C -- Customer Survey Results
D -- Job Description -- Database Administrator
E -- Job Description -- Network Engineer
F -- Job Description -- Computer Systems Analyst II
G -- Job Description -- Computer Applications Instructor
H -- Work Team Dynamics
I -- Determining Your Preferred Communication Style
J -- [CJIT] Project Plan Tasks
K -- [CJIT] Project Plan Gantt Chart 
L -- Management Project Assessment Form
M -- Management Project Approval Sheet

ABSTRACT -- EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

In this report, I focus on issues affecting the [Criminal Justice Information Technology (CJIT)] Department of the [Unnamed Local Government]. In the past year, [CJIT] has not only been rebuilt from the ground up, but has also expanded. As a result, the department is faced with numerous issues that are affecting both the quality of work and the morale of the staff.

In the process of the [CJIT] changeover, the previous employees left little to no documentation. Therefore, for the past year, [CJIT] staff members have been forced to look to the past to see what types of systems their predecessors developed. With little to no documentation available, this has been a challenging task. Although this has been necessary, it has also prevented staff from looking ahead to the future. As a result, there is little understanding of what is the ultimate goal of [CJIT], and what we hope to accomplish in the future.

During this time, many conflicts have arisen amongst [CJIT] staff. These range from not knowing where to find fellow staff members to general personality conflicts. The department is having a difficult, if not impossible, time working as a team.

The report consists of a study of relevant literature on such topics as strategic planning, mission statement development, teambuilding, communication, and project management. [CJIT] customers and staff were consulted throughout for requirements and recommendations. Tools used include surveys, meetings, and individual consultation.

Based on the above, I present recommendations for improving [CJIT].

In order to understand the business and direction of [CJIT], I research mission statements from various related organizations. Based on this research and the input from [CJIT], I compose a [CJIT] Mission Statement.

One of the biggest challenges facing [CJIT] is a lack of communication amongst staff members. I analyze different communication tools, and make a recommendation for implementation. In addition, I recommend sources for improving teamwork within the department.

[CJIT] staff members express a lack of clarity as to how their position relates to the other positions in the department. Unfortunately the standard job descriptions do little to help this problem. In order to provide more job clarity, I have consulted with [CJIT] staff members to develop Job Roles, which will provide more specifics on the day-to-day responsibilities of each staff member.

Once all staff members understand their responsibilities, it is important that they know how to communicate the status of their projects with other staff members and customers. For this reason, I research project management tools and make a recommendation for implementation.

It is hoped that through these recommendations, the department can move forward in providing quality information systems solutions to the [Unnamed Local Government] criminal justice community.
 
 

INTRODUCTION

Background and Context

This project focuses on the [Unnamed Local Government] [Unnamed State] Criminal Justice Information Systems ([CJIT]) department, a functional department of the [Unnamed Local Government]. [CJIT] provides computer and software support to the [Unnamed Local Government] Courthouse, and various related criminal justice agencies in the [Unnamed Local Government]. [CJIT] is separate from the [Unnamed Local Government] Information Technology Services (ITS), and is staffed as follows:

Just over one year ago, [CJIT] was in chaos. After functioning for several years with a staff of three (one network engineer, one database administrator, and one manager), the network engineer resigned. The manager resigned shortly thereafter, leaving only one staff member to carry out all the functions of the department.

In December 1999, a new manager was hired, and they soon hired a new network engineer. However, the chaos was not over. The database administrator resigned in February of 2000.

Over the next six months, four new individuals were hired to reach the present staffing level outlined above. Of the current staff of six, four were hired from outside the [Unnamed Local Government], including the new manager.

Statement of the Problem/Opportunity

Due to the changes at [CJIT] since December 1999, the department is in a state of flux. Some of the present issues include:

[CJIT] has a desperate need for stability and leadership. Staff members frequently spend as much time focusing on the issues within the department as they do performing their job-related tasks. Morale is low, and there are frequent rumors that one staff member or another is searching for a new job.

Through this project, I will analyze the issues outlined above and propose solutions.

Literature Review

Many scholars have attempted to address situations such as those being encountered by [CJIT]. These scholars provide some guidance as to how [CJIT] should tackle their challenges.

Strategic Planning/Mission

Strategic planning has gone through many different evolutions over the past half-century. The rise of strategic planning began in March 1979, when the Harvard Business Review published Michael Porter's article "How Competitive Forces Shape Strategy." In his article, Porter stated that profitability in any industry is determined by five forces: the competition among existing players, the threat of new entrants, the power of suppliers, the power of customers and the availability of substitute products. By analyzing these five forces, one could determine the optimal positioning for a company.

General Electric is widely seen as being the pioneer in strategic planning. In the early 1960's, they had a large, centralized staff of planners whose sole job was to ponder the future. In 1983, under the leadership of Chairman Jack Welch, GE slashed the corporate planning department. At this point, many companies were moving away from strategic planning, per se, and moving towards Total Quality Management and the teachings of W. Edwards Deming. In the late 1980's, corporations were forced into massive downsizing and reengineering. Finally in the 1990's, the focus became on how to grow the corporation.

Despite the various forms of strategic planning that have existed over the decades, some procedures still stand clear.

The first step in strategic planning is to determine the direction in which you are going, or where you want to go. Dennis Conner states, "Once your direction becomes clear to you and fully visible to others, all the elements of winning – attitude, performance teamwork, and competition – begin to come together."

Joel Ross and Michael Kami do an excellent job of describing the current situation in [CJIT]. They state, "Without a strategy the organization is like a ship without a rudder, going around in circles."

But how does an organization or functional department begin to develop a strategy? According to Peter Drucker, "A business is not defined by its name, statutes, or articles of incorporation. It is defined by business mission. Only a clear definition of the mission and purpose of the organization makes possible clear and realistic business objectives."

In evaluating these statements, both individually and as they relate to each other, it is clear that [CJIT] needs to develop some type of strategy, such as a Mission Statement.

A Mission Statement describes a fundamental, unique purpose for an organization or group. It outlines what the organization or group intends to accomplish, the market in which they operate, and the philosophical premises that guide their actions. A successful Mission Statement provides motivation, direction, image of the organization or group’s character and set of attitudes.

According to Thompson and Strickland, arriving at a good Mission Statement usually requires taking three factors in to account:

  1. Customer needs, or what is being satisfied
  2. Customer groups, or who is being satisfied
  3. The technologies used and functions performed – how customers’ needs are satisfied
The focus on customers is very important. Ireland & Hitt explain that "customers should be viewed as the most critical stakeholder group and therefore should play a prominent role in Mission Statement focus."

However, a successful mission statement must also take in to consideration the employees. The true test of the success of a mission statement is not how well it is written, but rather whether or not the employees can carry it out. According to James C. Collins, "What's needed are teeth so sharp that even if you wanted to ignore what's on the mission statement, you couldn't."

Most scholarly literature focuses on the company or organization when designing a Mission Statement. Thompson and Strickland however, also discuss Mission Statements in terms of functional departments. In these situations, Mission Statements spell out the functional departments’ contribution to the company mission, its principal role and activities, and the direction it needs to be moving.

A Mission Statement designed for [CJIT] will follow this model, as [CJIT] is a functional department of the [Unnamed Local Government], rather than a company in itself.

Teams

Many people assume that once a team of people is hired, they will automatically get along and work well together. However, according to Wall, leaders need to understand that people can learn to work together, but it doesn't come naturally. The leaders must be prepared to spend a great deal of time and effort teaching and coaching people on how to work together effectively.

So where do team conflicts come from? When this question is posed to team members, the most frequent response is that the cause of the conflict was the other person involved in the dispute. However, further investigation uncovers that conflicts are not caused by personality problems at all, but rather by disagreements over how to get the work done.

Wall further breaks down these disagreements in to three distinct areas: goals, roles, and procedures.

Goals define what each team is going to accomplish and when. These are specific, short-range targets. When goals are not clear, individual assumptions are made about what the goals should be. These assumptions often differ, and then breed conflict.

Roles define who does what on the team, and how decisions are made. Without clearly defined roles, role ambiguity may exist, and lead to conflicts. These conflicts may become personalized if the individuals don't realize that conflicts are due to the lack of role clarity rather than personalities.

Procedures define how work is done. Procedures can be formal, such as those outlined at a corporate orientation for new hires. But procedures can also be informal. Informal procedures are generally unwritten, but demonstrate how work is really done. Often inconsistencies arise between formal and informal procedures. This results in conflicts as individuals do not know what procedures to follow.

APPROACH AND METHODOLOGY

The first step in this study is to address is the lack of direction in the department. It is anticipated that by developing a Mission statement the staff members will have a better understanding of the goals of the department and how their own jobs support those goals.

In order to develop a quality Mission statement, it is necessary to conduct research in to various corporate and government Mission statements, and in particular, any that may exist in the [Unnamed Local Government] Government. It is also important to study any Mission Statements (or related plans) that exist in ITS.

The [CJIT] department is what Thompson and Strickland defined as a "functional department". Therefore, the Mission Statement will spell out how [CJIT] contributes to the [Unnamed Local Government]'s mission, the principal roles and activities, and the direction [CJIT] needs to be moving.

Thompson and Strickland emphasize the importance of considering the customer when developing a Mission Statement. An important aspect of this for [CJIT] is defining who exactly the customers are. Clearly, [CJIT] customers are [Unnamed Local Government] employees working in various criminal justice agencies within the [Unnamed Local Government]. However, I will define exactly to which agencies [CJIT] provides full support, and to which agencies they provide only backup support, because the department has their own technical support group.

Once customers are defined, it is important to determine what their needs are. This ranges from what days and hours they expect staff to be available, to what specific support and/or development services they need. In order to attain this information, we will conduct a survey of a cross-section of [CJIT] customers.

Once there is an understanding of what [CJIT] as a department are trying to accomplish, we can begin the process of developing a day-to-day work structure.

As outlined in the Statement of Problem/Opportunity, [CJIT] is experiencing issues pertaining to communication and personality conflicts. It is important to evaluate the extent of these issues in order to determine how best to address them. In order to provide a confidential means for employees to express their opinions, we will conduct a confidential survey to uncover employee concerns. With the results of that survey, we should be able to better address such communication and personality conflicts.

In addition, it is critical that [CJIT] employees develop a sense of team-identity. For this reason, we will evaluate teambuilding activities available to [Unnamed Local Government] employees.

As discovered in the Literature Review above, Wall breaks down disagreements in to three distinct areas: goals, roles, and procedures. The development of a Mission Statement is expected to provide the goals of the department. Since this has been discussed in detail above, I will focus here on roles and procedures.

Roles define who does what on the team, and how decisions are made. Presently, the job descriptions in [CJIT] are rather unclear. Employees often do not know who is responsible for a particular area, or where those responsibilities overlap. Although job descriptions must remain somewhat fluid to allow for unexpected changes, it is important that each employee knows where their primary responsibility lies.

In order to clarify these roles, each job description will be reevaluated. Due to constraints from the [Unnamed Local Government]'s Personnel Office, it may be impossible to change the formal job descriptions. However, informal job outlines will be developed.

Procedures define how work is done. Without clearly defined goals and roles, it has been difficult to develop procedures within [CJIT]. The approach at present could be described as "flying by the seat of our pants". More formal procedures need to be implemented in order to clarify much of the confusion that exists in [CJIT].

These procedures need to be developed under the guidance of the Manager, but with the input of all [CJIT] employees. Procedures that need to be addressed include:

  1. Work hours (as determined by customer requirements)
  2. Communications
    1. Where to find employees, if needed (e.g., off-site location, and vacation).
    2. Who is working on what projects.
    3. Upcoming requirements (major projects)
  3. Project Management
    1. Status of current projects and requirements.
The Project Plan Tasks and Gantt Chart can be viewed as Appendix J and K, respectively.

CONSTRAINTS AND LIMITATIONS

The following is a list of potential constraints and/or limitations that may affect this project:

  1. Customer input. Such input is required for evaluating certain parts of the project. If such input is delayed or unavailable, alternative means of evaluation may be necessary.
  2. Cooperation by [CJIT] employees. Employees must be willing to participate in teambuilding exercises and surveys for successful evaluation.
  3. Government limitations. As a functional department of the [Unnamed Local Government], any procedures or plans must be within the scope of the [Unnamed Local Government] Code.
  4. Government Budget Restrictions. As a local government agency, we are constrained by budget restrictions. It is important to develop this plan with a minimum amount of financial requirements.
  5. Management participation. Prompt and constructive participation is required of the [CJIT] manager in order for certain exercises and surveys to be successful.
  6. Member of existing work team. The author of this project is a member of the existing work team. Although the author will make all efforts to remain unbiased, there is an inherent possibility of bias in any such situation.
  7. Time. The author is under time constraints from the academic institution in order to complete this project during the current semester.
MISSION STATEMENT DEVELOPMENT

Based on the review of scholarly literature above, the following items must be accomplished in developing a successful mission statement for [CJIT],

Sample Mission Statements

An important step in developing a mission statement is to research existing mission statements in related companies. The following are sample mission statements from corporations involved in information technology and/or technological support, and functional departments providing computer support to government organizations.

Corporate

The following are Mission Statements for corporations involved in Information Technology.

3Com Corporation: 3Com Carrier Networks Business is the industry leader in delivering rapid response, customer centric, IP-based networking solutions to service providers on a global basis. Our CommWorks based networking solutions enable carriers to reduce time to market, differentiate their services from competitive offerings and cost effectively drive customer growth.

Computer Sciences Corporation: Solve clients' business problems using information technology.

SAIC Corporation: SAIC is a company of people dedicated to delivering best-value services and solutions based on innovative applications of science and technology. Government Technology Departments

The following are examples of Mission Statements for selected Information Technology departments in local governments.

Department of Technology Services, Arlington County, Virginia: The mission of the Department of Technology Services (DTS) is to provide quality information and communications services, solutions, technology and support in partnership with Arlington County agencies in a reliable, responsive and effective manner.

Department of Information Technology, Fairfax County, Virginia: The Department of Information Technology will deliver quality and innovative information technology solutions to provide citizens, the business community and County staff with convenient access to appropriate information and services.

Department of Information Systems and Telecommunications, Montgomery County, Maryland: Montgomery County Government uses Information Technology where it adds the most value:

Office of the Chief Technology Officer, Washington, D.C.: Information technology is the most powerful agent of change in the 21st century. The mission of the Office of the Chief Technology Officer (OCTO) is to guide technology policy in support of the District's goals, which are to: [Unnamed Local Government] Mission Statements

There appear to be few Mission Statements, per se, in the [Unnamed Local Government]. The only one this author was able to uncover was for the Fire and EMS Department. It is as follows:

The members of the [Unnamed Local Government] Fire Department are dedicated to serving those who live, visit and work in the [Unnamed Local Government]. Our Mission Statement provides that, through our proactive and reactive service delivery, we strive to: Although the Information Technology Services (ITS) Department has no Mission Statement, they have outlined their Goals and Principles as follows (see Appendix A): The goals of the [Unnamed Local Government]'s Information Technology Services Department (ITS) are:


Definition of Customers

In brief terms, [CJIT] customers are the employees within the criminal justice community of the [Unnamed Local Government]. The following table lists each specific agency supported by [CJIT], and describes the goals of that agency.
 


Agency Goals
Adult Probation and Parole Parole officers help plan and verify placement and employment arrangements for parolees, provide counseling for them upon release from prison, and develop and supervise probation plans for probationers. The Office conducts pre- and post-sentencing investigations for the Circuit Court and the General District Court. Office staff also verifies plans for local furlough of state prison inmates; conducts urinalysis on court order; and collects restitution payments and court costs.
Circuit Court A court of unlimited general jurisdiction in certain matters. It can issue writs of mandamus, prohibitions, and certiorari. Divorce suits are heard in the Circuit Court. It has appellate jurisdiction in all cases, civil and criminal, from the lower courts and original jurisdiction for all felony indictments and for presentments, informations, and indictments for misdemeanors. 
Clerk's Office Deeds, wills, deeds of trust, and other papers are filed with the Clerk of this Court. The Clerk maintains and processes land record documents for the [Unnamed Local Government], handles probate and fiduciary matters, issues marriage licenses, and provides clerical assistance to the judges in all civil and criminal matters. Other duties include issuing notarial certificates, administering oaths to elected and appointed officials, and maintaining historical records and statistics for the [Unnamed Local Government].
Commonwealth Attorney's Office The Office of the Commonwealth's Attorney is responsible for the prosecution of all persons charged with the commission of criminal and traffic offenses that occur within the [Unnamed Local Government] limits in violation of state law or [Unnamed Local Government] Ordinances. The Commonwealth's Attorney serves as the chief prosecutor and also serves as legal advisor to the Sheriff and the Police Department with regard to criminal matters.
Court Services Unit Provides intake, probation and parole services to juveniles involved in the juvenile justice system. Provides supervision of adult offenders of domestic violence and screens and prepares petitions to the court for protective orders in cases of family violence.
Magistrates Responsible for issuing process of arrest and search warrants, admitting to bail or committing to jail persons charged with offenses, and issuing arrest warrants and summons to appear and answer. 
Police Department The basic mission of the Police Department is to maintain law and order, protect persons and property, apprehend persons suspected of crime, direct and control traffic, investigate traffic accidents, and enforce all state and city criminal laws.
Public Defender's Office Provides legal assistance in criminal cases to represent indigent defendants.
Sheriff's Office The Office of Sheriff has primary responsibility for the management of the [Unnamed Local Government] Detention Center, Courthouse and courtroom security, prisoner transportation, warrant execution, and service of all civil papers and court generated documents, and secondary responsibility for law enforcement in the [Unnamed Local Government].
Victim Witness Assistance Program Assist victims throughout criminal justice proceedings, to include ensuring they have a voice throughout the process and referring them out outside agencies, when needed.
Women's Shelter Provides emergency shelter and crisis intervention services to battered women and their children and anger management classes for abusers.

This list can be further broken down to define the primary and secondary customers. Primary customers are defined as those departments who rely on [CJIT] as their sole means of information technology. Secondary customers are defined as those departments who have their own small technical support groups, but who rely on [CJIT] for larger information technology projects. The division is as follows:
 


Primary Customers Secondary Customers
  • Adult Probation and Parole 
  • Circuit Court Judges Chambers 
  • Clerk's Office 
  • Commonwealth Attorney's Office 
  • Court Services Unit 
  • Public Defender's Office 
  • Victim Witness Assistance Program 
  • Women's Shelter 
  • Magistrates 
  • Police Department 
  • Sheriff's Office 

Customer Needs

In order to assess the needs and requirements of [CJIT] customers, a survey was sent to representatives of each department listed in the previous section. A copy of the survey is located as Appendix B.

The following is a summary of the results of this survey, and the complete results are located as Appendix C.

Types of services desired

 
#
%
Repairing software problems
9
90%
Formal training on department specific programs
8
80%
New equipment requests and installations
7
70%
New software requests and installations
7
70%
Repairing equipment problems
7
70%
Custom design of programs or reports
7
70%
One-on-one assistance with department specific programs
5
50%
Formal training on boxed software programs 
4
40%
One-on-one assistance with boxed software programs
4
40%
NOTE: Total Sample Size = 10    
Hours services needed

Average Start Time: 7:47 am

Average End Time: 5:00 pm

# Needing 24 Hours: 3
 
 

Days of the week services needed

Weekdays: 10

Weekends: 4 (includes 1 request for on-call service)

Acceptable completion times

(average responses)


Resolving problems that affect ALL (everyone) staff members 1.3 days
Requests for FIXES (error correction) to equipment 1.7 days
Requests for FIXES (error correction) to custom designed software 3.0 days
Resolving problems that affect SEVERAL staff members  3.4 days
Request for new STANDARD software to be installed 4.9 days
Resolving problems that affect ONE (and only one) staff member  4.9 days
Request for a new computer  6.4 days
Requests for NEW CHANGES to custom designed software 11.9 days
Request for new CUSTOM BOXED software 10.0 days
Request for new CUSTOM DESIGNED software 30.4 days

Proposed [CJIT] Mission Statement

Based on the assessments outlined above, the following [CJIT] Mission Statement is proposed:
 


The Criminal Justice Information Systems ([CJIT]) Department provides quality information technology solutions to the [Unnamed Local Government] criminal justice community to support their goal of making the [Unnamed Local Government] a safe place to live, work, and visit.

Recommendations





In order to accomplish this Mission Statement, I make the following recommendations based on the customer survey:

    1. Recommend adding 24x7 on-call support.
      1. Reason: 33.3% of respondents request some form of support 24 hours a day. 40.0% also request some form of support on the weekends.
      2. Procedure: This can be done by using an on-call pager that would be rotated through staff. The on-call person needs to be able to reach fellow staff members during the on-call time to handle areas out of their expertise (e.g., Ray can't fix the database, Susan can't fix the network). May require equipping all staff members with basic pagers.
    2. Recommend scheduling staff in shifts, from 7:30 am to 4:00 pm and from 8:30 am to 5:00 pm.
      1. Reason: The average time that respondents request daily service through is 5:00 pm. 6 of the 8 respondents not requesting 24 hour support request service through 5:00 pm or later. Presently, all staff except the [CJIT] Coordinator leaves at 4:00 pm. This leaves at least one hour per day that support could be seen as insufficient.
      2. Procedure: Request volunteers to work the 8:30 am to 5:00 pm shift. If no volunteers come forward, either develop schedule based on seniority or via rotation.
    3. Recommend that we use an electronic means to manage projects and requests.
      1. Reason: End-users expressed concern over communication of the status of requests.
      2. Procedure: Please refer to the section below on Project Management.
    4. Recommend that respondent comments from the survey be shared with all [CJIT] staff members.
      1. Reason: End-users emphasize the importance of their systems, and the repercussions when the systems are down. Sometimes people don't see the "big picture" and this could help.
      2. Procedure: Comments should be discussed in a department meeting.
    5. Recommend moving forward in developing a mission statement and goals for the department.
      1. Reason: [CJIT] staff and customers need a means to focus on what we need to do and when in order to provide better customer service.
      2. Procedure: Conduct preliminary research on mission statements in organizations and/or departments similar to [CJIT], and work up a preliminary draft to be discussed with other [CJIT] staff members. In addition, we should develop customer service goals that will reflect in part the results of this survey.
IMPROVING COMMUNICATIONS

[CJIT] department staff members frequently report that they do not know where to find their coworkers, or even if their coworkers are in the office. For this reason, it is important to institute some method of tracking the location of all staff.

In/Out Board

In many offices, this is accomplished through the use of an "In/Out Board". The In/Out Board is attached to a wall, and provides a row for each staff member. The staff members indicate, using a magnetic disk, whether they are in or out of the office. Further, the In/Out Board is made out of a "white board" material, allowing staff members to write with an erasable marker what time they will be back, where they are, or any other important information.

Although this solution would be fast and easy to implement, it may not be effective. Presently the offices of [CJIT] staff members are on different floors of the Courthouse. The [CJIT] Coordinator is located within the Circuit Court Judges Chambers on the Fourth Floor, while the remaining [CJIT] staff members are split between two offices on the Third Floor. Additionally, the Court Administrators who frequently need to locate [CJIT] staff members are located within the Circuit Court Judges Chambers. With this division of staff, it would be difficult to find a central location to place the board.

Lotus Notes

The [Unnamed Local Government] uses Lotus Notes as it's standard email system. Lotus Notes provides tools that could assist staff in knowing the present status of their co-workers.

The Lotus Notes program includes a calendar feature. At the present time, all [CJIT] staff members are required to record their time worked on this calendar. The [CJIT] Coordinator has access to each calendar, and can keep track of staff hours.

The calendar also includes a sharing feature. By setting the user preferences accordingly, additional people are allowed to view an individual's calendar. The use of the calendar could be expanded to include whether the staff member is in the office or working at an off-site location.

In addition, the user preferences for the calendar can be set to allow another individual to add or modify entries in the calendar. This feature could be used to allow the [CJIT] Coordinator (or designate) to update a staff member's calendar if they are out sick for the day, or for whatever reason cannot update their own calendar.

A group calendar can also be established to allow a quick overview of the availability of all staff. However, the sharing features outlined above must be in place for the group calendar to work properly.

Recommendations

It is recommended that the [CJIT] department implement the Lotus Notes Group Calendar feature. This solution is an expansion of the present use of the calendar to track staff hours, and results in no additional cost to the department.

Staff members should be given detailed instructions in the following areas:

The [CJIT] Coordinator will manage the system, and will have the following duties:
JOB ROLES

The official job descriptions for [CJIT] staff are very unclear. These descriptions were designed to be consistent with the [Unnamed Local Government] standards used by Information Technology Services (ITS). [CJIT] staff members seem to have difficulty understanding who is responsible for what, and where duties may overlap. The official job descriptions do nothing to help this problem.

The official job descriptions are available as Appendices D through G.

As outlined previously in the literature review, "roles define who does what on the team, and how decisions are made". Without clearly defined roles, conflict can occur. The authors further state that conflicts can become personalized if individuals don't realize that the conflicts are due to the lack of role clarity rather than personalities.

Given the unclear job descriptions provided by the [Unnamed Local Government], and the apparently personality conflicts that are occurring within [CJIT], it is plausible that the problem lies in the clack of role clarity.

Recommendations

For the reasons outlined above, new informal job descriptions, or job roles, are necessary. These job descriptions will describe specific duties, projects, and software/hardware platforms.

The following informal job descriptions were developed with the input of the [CJIT] Coordinator and each [CJIT] staff member.
 


Database Administrator

Job Roles

  • Monitor and maintain in-house Sybase database systems on the Windows NT platform, including, but not limited to AJIS and Legal Process. 
  • Monitor and maintain in-house Power Builder applications, including, but not limited to Commonwealth Attorney's Legal Process, Clerk's Legal Process, Mugshot, and Sheriff's Laptops. 
  • Coordinate with staff and consultants (SDSC) regarding conversion of [CJIT] (mainframe) to AJIS (Sybase on the Windows NT platform), and perform tasks as required. 
  • Convert Power Builder applications to Cold Fusion, in conjunction with the conversion of [CJIT] to AJIS. 
  • Develop new database applications, using Sybase and/or Microsoft Access, as required. 
  • Ongoing development and maintenance of Courthouse Intranet. 
  • Document existing database and related applications. 

Network Engineer

Job Roles

  • Monitor and maintain in-house network servers and related architecture, including, but not limited to Novell and Microsoft NT. 
  • Install and configure in-house network servers and related architecture, including, but not limited to Novell and Microsoft NT. 
  • Work with state agencies to develop and maintain integrated systems. 

Computer Applications Instructor

Job Roles

  • Write documentation and user manuals for AJIS database and related applications. 
  • Test and analyze new applications. 
  • Train end-users on AJIS database and related applications. 
  • Provide basic support for [CJIT] and AJIS end-users. 

Computer Systems Analyst (technical support)

Job Roles

  • Install and configure new PC's for end-users. 
  • Troubleshoot and repair PC's. 
  • Upgrade and install software as required. 
  • Provide backup assistance to Network Engineer as needed. 

Computer Systems Analyst (database support)

Job Roles

  • Monitor and perform basic maintenance on in-house Sybase database systems. 
  • Monitor and perform basic maintenance on in-house Power Builder applications. 
  • Coordinate with staff and consultants (SDSC) regarding conversion of [CJIT] (mainframe) to AJIS (Sybase), and perform tasks as required. 
  • Develop new database applications using Microsoft Access. 
  • Provide backup assistance to Computer Systems Analyst (technical support) as needed. 

PROJECT MANAGEMENT

Presently, no means exists for [CJIT] staff members to easily check the status of various projects within the department. This becomes a serious issue when there are multiple people working on one project without any centralized means of tracking their progress.

In addition, customers complain that once a request is made, they have no means of determining its status. In the Comments section of the Customer Survey, one respondent wrote:

I believe the level of service would be improved if there was better communication between IT people and the end users… The most frequent complaint I hear is that requests for service appear to go into outer space. It is not that the work is not getting done… it is that in many cases people do not know it has been done or what the schedule is. Couldn't we go to an email request for help that would require some kind of response? (see Appendix C) Initially, a test database was set up to track individual projects. This was designed based on the concept of the Microsoft Exchange project list, which staff members had been successful with in the past. However, since we don't have access to a Microsoft Exchange server, we had to devise a different program. The problem with the test database is that it is not able to integrate with other programs easily, especially email, and results in a lot of cut-and-pasting.

Recommendations

The [Unnamed Local Government] has previously selected Lotus Notes as its electronic messaging program. The To-Do List in Lotus Notes should be used to address the project management issues in the [CJIT] Department.

The To-Do List is a convenient and cost-effective means of tracking projects amongst staff members. In the To-Do List, you set the start date and the due date. The project is assigned to a particular staff member or members, and additional individuals can be listed as interested parities.

Each item contains an "additional information" section where updates to project status can be added as needed. This section can be used for recording the detailed comments on the status of the project, and specific tasks that are taken to reach completion. Anytime the project is updated and saved, an email update is sent to all individuals involved in the project, including the interested parties.

Implementation of this solution should entail no cost to the [CJIT] Department. All [CJIT] staff members will need to be trained on the proper use of the tool, and the [CJIT] Coordinator will need to manage the tool for proper use.

TEAMBULIDING

As discussed previously, staff members in the [CJIT] department are experiencing personality conflicts. The department is comprised of six individuals with very distinct skill sets, very distinct backgrounds, and very distinct personalities. Differences amongst individuals include the following:

In addition, all staff members tend to be very strong in their convictions. There have been numerous conflicts between staff members, and numerous staff meetings to discuss how these conflicts can be resolved.
 
 

Recommendations

The first step in fixing a problem is determining what exactly the problem is. It is evident during staff meetings that certain, if not all, individuals are hesitant to voice their concerns in a group format.

In order to provide an anonymous means of identifying the issues, the [CJIT] department should conduct the Work Team Dynamics survey (see Appendix H). The survey should provide a guideline for uncovering issues, and staff members should be encouraged to add additional comments as necessary. Staff members may use any means to protect their identity, including typing or having someone else write their responses. The survey should be distributed either via email or by hand in a staff meeting. Surveys should be returned to the [CJIT] Coordinator's mailbox in a sealed envelope to ensure confidentiality.

All staff members will also attend the [Unnamed Local Government] sponsored class, Teambuilding for Success. This class is offered on a regular basis through the Personnel Office. The purpose of this class is to develop the following skills:

As a supplement to the Teambuilding course, [CJIT] employees will a communication assessment survey. The purpose of these surveys is to determine ones personality and/or communication preferences, and those of their co-workers. With this knowledge, it is anticipated that employees will have a better understanding of how to approach fellow employees without conflict. Possible surveys include the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator, the Work Team Dynamics Survey (See Appendix H.), and the Determining Your Preferred Communication Style Survey (See Appendix I). Due to cost constraints, it is suggested that [CJIT] use the Work Team Dynamics Survey and the Determining Your Preferred Communication Style Survey.

FINAL SUMMARY AND EVALUATION

Through this project, I have addressed many of the issues presently facing the Criminal Justice Information Systems Department of the [Unnamed Local Government]. Although it is not expected that this project will solve every issue facing [CJIT], it should nonetheless provide a direction from which to begin.

It is not unusual in a department or organization to deal with staff turnover. Nor is it unusual to expand, or even to hire a new manager. But when all of these situations occur at the same time, there is bound to be a significant period of adjustment. It is expected that after staff members adjust to their new roles, the department or organization will move forward successfully. [CJIT] remains in turmoil, however, and has not yet reached this point.

Fortunately for the purposes of this project, [CJIT] provides an environment full of opportunities to develop management ability.

One of the most valuable parts of this project was the customer survey. Customers were beginning to feel that they could not rely on [CJIT] to provide timely service, and were making observations that [CJIT] staff members appear to be in conflict with each other. By conducting the customer survey, the customers became more aware of the desire [CJIT] has to provide quality information system services and support. The customers were no longer being ignored; rather they are now an active part of the solution.

This project has not been without its difficulties. Due to political circumstances and conflicts amongst [CJIT] staff, the Site Supervisor ([CJIT] Coordinator) was forced to take a more active role in the project. Although I researched and/or developed all surveys for this project, each had to be circulated directly from the Site Supervisor. This helped ensure that responses were received in a timely manner, and that there were no suggestions of preferential treatment amongst [CJIT] staff members. To date, the majority of [CJIT] staff members remain unaware that I am conducting this project.

Most importantly, I have a greater understanding of the importance of teamwork, not only amongst staff members, but in the management process as well. Developing a management plan cannot be left to one individual alone. Rather, it takes the contributions of other managers, customers, staff, and outside resources. It requires an understanding of how other organizations have proceeded in the past, and what their successes and failures were. Even though in many organizations one individual may receive credit for developing a management plan, that individual is merely a leader or figurehead of a larger team of individuals working together.

The past four years of study in the Computer Systems Management program at the University of Maryland, University College provided me with an excellent understanding of the mechanics of both information resources and management. However, this project provided my first opportunity to turn that learning in to action. I hope that this project is the beginning of my move from the technical aspects of information technology to a career in information management.
 
 

ENDNOTES
 

APPENDIX A

INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY GOALS AND PRINCIPLES

FY 2002 - FY 2007 PROPOSED

The [Unnamed Local Government]'s goals and principles for the application and management of information technology (IT) to the [Unnamed Local Government]'s business and for the related organizations that manage and deliver this service, provide the framework for managing and delivering these key services.

[Unnamed Local Government] Technology Goals
 

The [Unnamed Local Government]'s goals for the use of IT are to:

Goals of the Information Technology Services Department

The goals of the [Unnamed Local Government]'s Information Technology Services Department (ITS) are:

SOURCE: Information Technology Plan FY 2002 - FY 2007 Proposal. [Unnamed Local Government]. January 5, 2001.
 
 

APPENDIX B

CUSTOMER SURVEY

(sent via email)






In an attempt to better serve our customers, I am requesting that you take a few minutes to complete the survey listed below. You can "reply with history" and fill out the survey on-line. I would appreciate it if you could return the survey to me no later than Friday, April 6.

Thank you in advance for your help.

[Unnamed Manager]

[CJIT] Coordinator
 
 

What types of services would you like to receive from us (check all that apply)?

___A. new equipment requests and installations

___B. new software requests and installations

___C. repairing equipment problems

___D. repairing software problems

___E. custom design of programs

___F. formal training on department specific programs (e.g., [CJIT], Legal Process)

___G. formal training on boxed software programs (e.g., WordPerfect)

___H. one-on-one assistance with department specific programs

___I. one-on-one assistance with boxed software programs

___ OTHER (please list):

________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

What are the normal working hours of your staff who may need the above services?
 
Start time: End time:
___6:00 am 

___6:30 am 

___7:00 am 

___7:30 am 

___8:00 am 

___8:30 am 

___9:00 am 

___9:30 am 

___10:00 am 

___Other (please note time)

___3:00 pm 

___3:30 pm 

___4:00 pm 

___4:30 pm 

___5:00 pm 

___5:30 pm 

___6:00 pm 

___6:30 pm 

___7:00 pm 

___Other (please note time)

What hours/days over all does your staff need the above services?
 
Beginning at: Ending at:
___6:00 am 

___6:30 am 

___7:00 am 

___7:30 am 

___8:00 am 

___8:30 am 

___9:00 am

___9:30 am 

___10:00 am 

___Other (please note time)

___3:00 pm 

___3:30 pm 

___4:00 pm 

___4:30 pm 

___5:00 pm 

___5:30 pm 

___6:00 pm 

___6:30 pm 

___7:00 pm 

___Other (please note time)


Days of Week:  
___Monday 

___Tuesday 

___Wednesday 

___Thursday 

___Friday 

___Saturday 

___Sunday

 

What do you consider acceptable times for the following problems and/or requests to be completed?

1. Request for a new computer (from time we receive the PC until it is operational at the desk)

___1 day

___3 days

___1 week

___2 weeks

___3 weeks

___4 weeks

___Other (please note time)

2. Request for new STANDARD software, such as Lotus Notes, WordPerfect, Legal Process, [CJIT] (from time of request to the time the software is usable at the desk)

___1 day

___3 days

___1 week

___2 weeks

___3 weeks

___4 weeks

___Other (please note time)

3. Request for new CUSTOM BOXED software, such as a program sold in the stores but not regularly used in the [Unnamed Local Government] (from time of request to the time the software is usable at the desk)

___1 day

___3 days

___1 week

___2 weeks

___3 weeks

___4 weeks

___Other (please note time)

4. Request for new CUSTOM DESIGNED software, such as a new application to manipulate [CJIT] data, custom databases (from time of request to the time the software is usable at the desk)

___1 day

___3 days

___1 week

___2 weeks

___3 weeks

___4 weeks

___2 months

___6 months

___Other (please note time)

5. Requests for NEW CHANGES to custom designed software, such as Legal Process, Mugshot (from time of request to the time the software is usable at the desk)

___1 day

___3 days

___1 week

___2 weeks

___3 weeks

___4 weeks

___Other (please note time)

6. Requests for FIXES (error correction) to custom designed software, such as Legal Process, Mugshot (from time of request to the time the software is usable at the desk)

___1 day

___3 days

___1 week

___2 weeks

___3 weeks

___4 weeks

___Other (please note time)
 
 
 
 

7. Requests for FIXES (error correction) to equipment, such as PC's/printers (from time of request to the time the equipment is fixed)

___1 day

___3 days

___1 week

___2 weeks

___3 weeks

___4 weeks

___Other (please note time)

8. Resolving problems that affect ONE (and only one) staff member.

___1 day

___3 days

___1 week

___2 weeks

___3 weeks

___4 weeks

___Other (please note time)

9. Resolving problems that affect SEVERAL (more than one, but not everyone) staff members.

___1 day

___3 days

___1 week

___2 weeks

___3 weeks

___4 weeks

___Other (please note time)

10. Resolving problems that affect ALL (everyone) staff members.

___1 day

___3 days

___1 week

___2 weeks

___3 weeks

___4 weeks

___Other (please note time)
 
 

APPENDIX C

CUSTOMER SURVEY RESULTS






Total Number of Responses: 10

What types of services would you like to receive from us?
 
 
# wanting service
% wanting service
New equipment requests and installations
7
70.0%
New software requests and installations
7
70.0%
Repairing equipment problems
7
70.0%
Repairing software problems
9
90.0%
Custom design of programs or reports
7
70.0%
Formal training on department specific programs
8
80.0%
Formal training on boxed software programs 
4
40.0%
One-on-one assistance with department specific programs
5
50.0%
One-on-one assistance with boxed software programs
4
40.0%

Other:

What are the normal working hours of your staff who may need the above services?

Average Start Time: 7:33 am

Average End Time: 5:00 pm

# Working 24 Hours: 2

What hours over all does your staff need the above services?

Average Start Time: 7:47 am

Average End Time: 5:00 pm

# Needing 24 Hours: 3

What days of the week does your staff need the above services?

Weekdays: 10

Weekends: 4 (includes 1 request for on-call service)

What do you consider acceptable times for the following problems and/or requests to be completed? (average responses)
 
Request for a new computer (from time we receive the PC until it is operational at the desk)  6.4 days
Request for new STANDARD software to be installed, such as Lotus Notes, WordPerfect, Legal Process, [CJIT] (from time of request to the time the software is usable at the desk)  4.9 days
Request for new CUSTOM BOXED software, such as a program sold in the stores but not regularly used in the [Unnamed Local Government] (from time of request to the time the software is usable at the desk)  10.0 days
Request for new CUSTOM DESIGNED software, such as a new application to manipulate [CJIT] data, custom databases (from time of request to the time the software is usable at the desk)  30.4 days
Requests for NEW CHANGES to custom designed software, such as Legal Process, Mugshot (from time of request to the time the software is usable at the desk)  11.9 days
Requests for FIXES (error correction) to custom designed software, such as Legal Process, Mugshot (from time of request to the time the software is usable at the desk)  3.0 days
Requests for FIXES (error correction) to equipment, such as pc's/printers (from time of request to the time the equipment is fixed)  1.7 days
Resolving problems that affect ONE (and only one) staff member  4.9 days
Resolving problems that affect SEVERAL (more than one, but not everyone) staff members  3.4 days
Resolving problems that affect ALL (everyone) staff members  1.3 days

Comments:

We need for everyone to be up and running during business hours, hence we hope repairs can be done as quickly as possible. The length of time we can wait for installation varies with the function we need and how readily accessible it is to staff at other locations in the office.

Most of our requests are large and/or difficult. We try to handle the easy stuff ourselves.

All our indexes, civil, criminal, misc, are contained in [CJIT]. Besides being needed for the basic functioning of the office, these records are required by anyone recording real estate transactions. All new civil cases filed in our court require use of the Legal Process module to process the case. If there are problems with any of these systems, we require immediate resolution of them. State systems that come through local networks also require immediate attention. History has shown that we can tolerate and work around some problems for a very long time (problems in the legal process module that have never been resolved), but any new system should be thoroughly tested before being implemented as it impacts on the daily functioning of the clerk's office.

I am not sure of the application of these questions to the Magistrate operation since we depend so heavily on the system as a whole being operational. Because we do depend upon the whole system everybody's problem is our problem. Problems which arise, like the New Years situation where there was no provision for 2001 data, need immediate attention because it affects every aspect of the system. Breakdowns of any duration cause problems that seem to multiply exponentially as time passes. If the warrant information doesn't get into all the programs it is supposed to, complaints are forthcoming from all levels. The same holds true if the machines are not working properly.

I believe the level of service would be improved if there was better communication between IT people and the end users. I know I am ploughing old ground here, but the most frequent complaint I hear is that requests for service appear to go into outer space. It is not that the work is not getting done... it is that in many cases people do not know it has been done or what the schedule is. Couldn't we go to an email request for help that would require some kind or response?

Please keep in mind there are certain instances in which the need for these services are urgent because of deadlines and need to be completed earlier than the way in which the questions are answered.

APPENDIX D

[Unnamed Local Government]

Class Specification (Job Description)

Database Administrator

Distinguishing Characteristics of the Class: The work of this position involves: (1) maintaining responsibility for the definition, organization, efficacy and protection of [Unnamed Local Government]-owned databases, (2) enforcing standards for use of database information and for maintaining database security, and (3) keeping a stable and accessible computer environment for database users and applications developers. The work is performed under general supervision of the Technical Services Supervisor or other designated supervisor, who monitors results of completed work for technical adequacy. Written guidelines are available in the form of pertinent administrative regulations and Information Technology Services (ITS) or Circuit Court standards and practices.

Illustrative Examples of Work:

Essential Knowledge, Skills and Abilities: Thorough knowledge of the principles, methods and practices of systems analysis and design, database development and administration, computer programming, and documentation techniques; good knowledge of industry-standard local area network software and related systems; good knowledge of municipal government functions; ability to perceive the management information needs of users and develop appropriate database structures and systems that fulfill those needs; ability to plan and monitor development projects; ability to analyze problems, interpret, and report solutions; ability to communicate effectively, both orally and in writing; and the ability to establish and maintain effective working relationships with employees and operating officials.

Minimum Requirements: Extensive progressively responsible data processing experience, some of which must have been at the level equivalent to a Computer Programmer Analyst; completion of college-level courses in computer science, information management, or a related field, including training in one or more relational database engines (Oracle, Sybase, Lotus Notes); or any equivalent combination of experience and training which provides the required knowledge, skills and abilities.
 
 

APPENDIX E

[Unnamed Local Government]

Class Specification (Job Description)

Network Engineer

Distinguishing Characteristics of the Class: A Network Engineer II performs technical support work installing mainframe, local area network (LAN) and wide area network (WAN) operating systems software and hardware. Work involves designing, recommending, testing, modifying and maintaining operating systems and systems software in LAN, WAN and mainframe environments and providing technical guidance to others in the performance of this work. This level of work is distinguished from that of a Network Engineer I by the greater breadth of responsibility for the full range of mainframe, LAN and WAN systems, the responsibility for designing as well as modifying and maintaining operating systems, and the greater independence with which assignments are carried out. An employee in this class works under general supervision and exercises considerable latitude for independent judgment and discretion, within established policies and procedures. Completed work ensures the effective use and efficient operation of the [Unnamed Local Government]'s computer systems and networks.

Illustrative Examples of Work:

Essential Knowledge, Skills and Abilities: Thorough knowledge of general operating systems software and of computer hardware; thorough knowledge of mainframe, LAN and WAN communications operating systems, and of related software and hardware configurations, capabilities and limitations; ability to provide problem determination assistance to Departmental staff; ability to comprehend technical literature; ability to communicate with others using non-technical language to explain complex technical subjects; ability to establish and maintain effective working relationships.

Minimum Requirements: Considerable experience in performing systems programming work in a mainframe, LAN or WAN environment, or performing equivalent work in a related field; and completion of college-level courses in computer science, business administration or a related field; or any equivalent combination of experience and training which provides the required knowledge, skills and abilities.
 
 

APPENDIX F

[Unnamed Local Government]

Class Specification (Job Description)

Computer Systems Analyst II

Distinguishing Characteristics of the Class: The work of this class involves responsibility for implementation and operation of [Unnamed Local Government]-owned computerized management-information systems that interface with outside systems such as the Washington Area Law Enforcement System (WALES), and the Virginia Crime Information Network (VCIN). Incumbents recommend acquisition and use of hardware and software, programming tools and languages used in applications development including programming methodology, design of user interface and report formats. They make final decisions on scheduling, work to be processed, backups, user security, file design and program design and provide technical guidance to computer users and data entry operators. The work is performed under the general supervision of Information Managers at higher levels. Guidelines are available in the form of accepted data processing and systems development procedures, and standards of technical adequacy.

Illustrative Examples of Work:

Essential Knowledge, Skills and Abilities: Good knowledge of data processing methods, including concepts of systems analysis and program design, traditional and structured programming methods for use on platforms such as the personal computer or mini-class computers using high-level procedural languages, theories of operating systems software, computer communications, data storage, file design, database design, program construction and debugging, equipment types, applications and management principles; some knowledge of mini-computer control systems; some knowledge of non-procedural languages; some knowledge of math and descriptive statistics; ability to train others in the use of hardware and software; ability to reduce computerized data into visual aids such as charts and graphs.

Minimum Requirements: Considerable experience in analysis of information needs of managers and supervisors through application of computer technology, including some experience in developing and writing applications programs using structured programming methods; and completion of college level courses in computer science, systems analysis, programming, mathematics, statistics, or a related field; or any equivalent combination of experience and training which provides the required knowledge, skills and abilities.
 
 


APPENDIX G

[Unnamed Local Government]

Class Specification (Job Description)

Computer Applications Instructor






Distinguishing Characteristics of the Class: A Computer Applications Instructor performs three major tasks: 1) the creation of user documentation for new or modified applications, 2) the creation of instruction guides for standard applications, and 3) the training of [Unnamed Local Government] staff in the use of personal computer, local area network, and mainframe applications. The position also assists in the testing of applications for a) quality assurance purposes and b) determination of whether the product should be used by [Unnamed Local Government] staff. An employee in this class works under general supervision. The supervisor assigns the functional area for which responsible, sets overall objectives and provides guidance regarding any special considerations or areas of emphasis of which the employee needs to be aware. The employee determines priorities jointly with the supervisor and independently plans and carries out assignments. Instructional work is reviewed by the supervisor, through spot check of student lesson critiques and feedback from managers and employees in organizations receiving training. New lesson plans, applications instructions and tests are subject to close review for technical adequacy and accuracy. The complexity of the work is characterized by assignments involving analysis of computer applications programs or problems with same, which is then used to determine instructional manual requirements, training plans and requirement, and similar matters. Work affects the quality of computer operating guidance and training provided to all PC users within the [Unnamed Local Government]. Contacts are with employees and managers at all levels within the [Unnamed Local Government], for the purpose of providing PC training, and with equipment and software vendors, for the purpose of evaluating products. Work is generally performed in an office or classroom setting.

Illustrative Examples of Work:

Essential Knowledge, Skills and Abilities: Good knowledge of MS-DOS, personal computer hardware, the local area network operating system and word-processing, spreadsheet and data management software; ability to analyze an application's use to be able to prepare documentation and instructional material; skill in training adults in technical systems; skill or ability to determine the appropriate method to be used to train adults in the use of a variety of applications; ability to establish and maintain good working relationships with [Unnamed Local Government] staff; skill and ability to communicate well verbally and in written form with many levels of [Unnamed Local Government] staff with which this position will come in contact.

Minimum Requirements: Some experience in 1) instructing adults in the use of computer applications, 2) creating user documentation of computer applications and 3) using personal computer word processing, spreadsheet and data management applications; completion of high school level courses in business English, math and grammar; or any equivalent combination of experience and training which provides the required knowledge, skills or abilities.

Additional Requirements: None noted.
 
 

APPENDIX H

Work Team Dynamics

Think about your work group. Indicate how often each of the following statements accurately reflects your experience in the group. Use this scale:

1=Always

2=Frequently

3=Sometimes

4=Rarely

5=Never

____ 1. My ideas get a fair hearing.

____ 2. I am encouraged for innovative ideas and risk taking.

____ 3. Diverse opinions within the group are encouraged.

____ 4. I have all the responsibility I want.

____ 5. There is a lot of favoritism shown in the group.

____ 6. Members trust one another to do their assigned work.

____ 7. The group sets high standards of performance excellence.

____ 8. People share and change jobs a lot in the group.

____ 9. You can make mistakes and learn from them in the group.

____ 10. This group has good operating rules.


SOURCE: Adapted From: William Dyer, Team Building, ed. 2 (Reading, MA: Addison-Wesley, 1987), pp. 123-125.

Schermerhorn Jr., John R., Hunt, James G, and Osborn, Richard N.; OB Workbook Supplement to Accompany Organizational Behavior; 6th Edition; John Wiley & Sons, Inc.; New York, NY; 1997.
 
 

APPENDIX I

Determining Your Preferred Communication Style

To determine your preferred communication style, select the one alternative that most closely describes what you would do in each of the 12 situations below. There are no correct answers. Select the alternative that best describes what you would actually do. Circle one letter only for each question.

  1. Wendy, a knowledgeable person from another department, comes to you, the engineering supervisor, and requests that you design a special product to her specifications. You would:
    1. Control the conversation and tell Wendy what you will do for her.
    2. Ask Wendy to describe the product. Once you understand it, you would present your ideas. Let her realize that you are concerned and want to help with your ideas.
    3. Respond to Wendy's request by conveying understanding and support. Help clarify what is to be done by you. Offer ideas, but do it her way.
    4. Find out what you need to know. Let Wendy know you will do it her way.
  2. Your department has designed a product that is to be fabricated by Saul's department. Saul has been with the company longer than you have; he knows his department. Saul comes to you to change the product design. You decide to:
    1. Listen to the change and why it would be beneficial. If you believe Saul's way is better, change it; if not, explain why the original idea is superior. If necessary, insist that it be done your way.
    2. Tell Saul to fabricate it any way he wants to.
    3. You are busy; tell Saul to do it your way. You don't have the time to listen and agree with him.
    4. Be supportive; make changes together as a team.
  3. Upper management has a decision to make. They call you to a meeting and tell you they need some information to solve a problem they describe to you. You:
    1. Respond in a manner that conveys personal support and offer alternative ways to solve the problem.
    2. Respond to their questions.
    3. Explain how to solve the problem.
    4. Show your concern by explaining how to solve the problem and why it is an effective solution.
  4. You have a routine work order. The work order is to be replaced verbally and completed in three days. Sue, the receiver, is very experienced and willing to be of service to you. You decide to:
    1. Explain your needs, but let Sue make the other decision.
    2. Tell Sue what you want and why you need it.
    3. Decide together what to order.
    4. Give Sue the order.
  5. Work orders from the staff department normally take 3 days; however, you have an emergency and need the job today. Your colleague Jim, the department supervisor, is knowledgeable and somewhat cooperative. You decide to:
    1. Tell Jim that you need it by three o'clock and return at that time to pick it up.
    2. Explain the situation and how the organization will benefit by expediting the order. Volunteer to help any way you can.
    3. Explain the situation and ask Jim when the order will be ready.
    4. Explain the situation and together come up with a solution to your problem.
  6. Danielle, a peer with a record of high performance, has recently had a drop in productivity. Her problem is affecting her performance. You know Danielle has a family problem. You:
    1. Discuss the problem; help Danielle realize the problem is affecting her work and yours. Supportively discuss ways to improve the situation.
    2. Tell the boss about it and let him decide what to do about it.
    3. Tell Danielle to get back on the job.
    4. Discuss the problem and tell Danielle how to solve the work situation; be supportive.
  7. You are a knowledgeable supervisor. You buy supplies from Peter regularly. He is an excellent salesperson and very knowledgeable about your situation. You are placing your weekly order. You decide to:
    1. Explain what you want and why. Develop a supportive relationship.
    2. Explain what you want and ask Peter to recommend products.
    3. Give Peter the order.
    4. Explain your situation and allow Peter to make the order.
  8. Jean, a knowledgeable person from another department, has asked you to perform a routine staff function to her specifications. You decide to:
    1. Perform the task to her specifications without questioning her.
    2. Tell her that you will do it in the usual way.
    3. Explain what you will do and why.
    4. Show your willingness to help; offer alternative ways to do it.
  9. Tom, a salesperson, has requested an order for your department's service with a short delivery date. As usual, Tom claims it is a take-it-or-leave-it offer. He wants your decision now, or within a few minutes, because he is in the customer's office. Your action is to:
    1. Convince Tom to work together to come up with a later date.
    2. Give Tom a yes or no answer.
    3. Explain your situation and let Tom decide if you should take the order.
    4. Offer an alternative delivery date. Work on your relationship; show your support.
  10. As a time-and-motion expert, you have been called in regard to a complaint about the standard time it takes to perform a job. As you analyze the entire job, you realize the one element of complaint should take longer, but other elements should take less time. The end result is a shorter total time for the job. You decide to:
    1. Tell the operator and foreman that the total time must be decreased and why.
    2. Agree with the operator and increase the standard time.
    3. Explain your findings. Deal with the operator and/or foreman's concerns, but ensure compliance with your new standard.
    4. Together with the operator, develop a new standard time.
  11. You approve budge allocations for projects. Marie, who is very competent in developing budgets, has come to you. You:
    1. Review the budget, make revisions, and explain them in a supportive way. Deal with concerns, but insist on your changes.
    2. Review the proposal and suggest areas where changes may be needed. Make changes together, if needed.
    3. Review the proposed budget, make revisions, and explain them.
    4. Answer any questions or concerns Marie has and approve the budget as is.
  12. You are a sales manager. A customer has offered you a contract for your product with a short deliver date. The offer is open for days. The contract would be profitable for you and organization. The cooperation of the production department is essential to meet the deadline. Tim, the production manager, and you do not get along very well because of your repeated requests for quick delivery. Your action is to:
    1. Contact Tim and try to work together to complete the contract.
    2. Accept the contract and convince Tim in a supportive way to meet the obligation.
    3. Contact Tim and explain the situation. Ask him if you and he should accept the contract, but let him decide.
    4. Accept the contract. Contact Tim and tell him to meet the obligation. If he resists, tell him you will go to the boss.
KEY

To determine your preferred communication style, below, circle the letter you selected as the alternative you chose in situations 1-12. The column headings indicate the style you selected.
 
 
Autocratic
Consultative
Participative
Laissez-Faire
1.
A
B
C
D
2.
C
A
D
B
3.
C
D
A
B
4.
D
B
C
A
5.
A
B
D
C
6.
C
B
A
B
7.
C
A
B
D
8.
B
C
D
A
9.
B
D
A
C
10.
A
C
D
B
11.
C
A
B
D
12.
D
B
A
C
         
TOTAL        

Add up the number of circled items per column. The total column should equal 12. The column with the highest number represents your preferred communication style. There is no one best style in all situations. The more evenly distributed the numbers are between the four styles, the more flexible are your communications. A total of 0 or 1 in any column may indicate a resistance to use the style(s). You could have problems in situations calling for use of this style.


SOURCE: Adapted from Robert N. Lussier, Human Relations in Organizations: A Skill-Building Approach, Second Edition (Homewood, IL: Richard D. Irwin., 1993), pp. 153-156.

Schermerhorn Jr., John R., Hunt, James G, and Osborn, Richard N.; OB Workbook Supplement to Accompany Organizational Behavior; 6th Edition; John Wiley & Sons, Inc.; New York, NY; 1997
 
 

APPENDIX J

[CJIT] PROJECT PLAN TASKS
 
 


 
 

APPENDIX K

[CJIT] PROJECT PLAN GANTT CHART


 
 

APPENDIX L

Management Project Assessment Form


 
 

APPENDIX M

Management Project Approval Sheet

NOTE: Advisor has possession of original Management Project Approval Record