June 11, 2007
Donna Price is coordinator of communications and marketing services for the Office of Information
The countdown continues as significant milestones are checked off Healthcare Exchange Project lists for the move of 13,000 Emory Healthcare e-mail accounts from the Novell GroupWise platform to Microsoft Exchange, scheduled for June to August 2007.
In May, completion of major project milestones included successful system stress testing and the placement of production and test environments in readiness for the pilot testing, when valuable input will be gained for calibrating systems and processes before the actual production migration.
Behind the scenes, technology specialists in teams across Emory Healthcare Information Services, Academic and Administrative Information Technology, Network Communications, and campus local support providers have invested months in research, planning, architecting, documenting and building the infrastructure for the project. The result is a highly available and robust environment that clusters and doubles the number of servers, improves network fault tolerance, and provides tiered storage with a reliable backup solution.
At every stage of development, careful attention was paid to creating systems and procedures that minimize or avoid impact to end users, business processes and health care functions. Once production migration begins, employee accounts within each EHC department or unit will be migrated incrementally within consecutive migration windows. This approach minimizes operational impact by ensuring an entire unit is moved to Exchange as quickly as possible, without disrupting e-mail flow for the business unit. For example, if a department has 300 employees, 100 accounts would be moved during each of three consecutive time windows.
The migration schedule is currently being developed. Once completed, employees can access the Healthcare Exchange production schedule at https://it.emory.edu/ehc-schedule to track specific migration dates and times. Multiple e-mail reminders will be sent to each employee notifying them of the date and time their account is scheduled to move to Exchange.
All GroupWise users who also have University Eagle e-mail accounts will have the e-mail from both their GroupWise and Eagle accounts merged into a single Exchange account. Meetings and appointments will automatically transfer from GroupWise calendars to Outlook — personal contacts, calendar proxy access, and distribution lists under 100 individuals; everything but rules and filters or anything stored locally.
Employees who currently have GroupWise accounts are encouraged to sign up for one of the free seminars being offered by Emory Healthcare Information Services and AAIT at convenient locations: Emory Crawford Long Hospital, Decatur Plaza, Emory Clinic Buildings A, B, and C; Emory Orthopedic and Spine Center, Emory University Hospital, Grady Memorial Hospital, Wesley Woods, and the Woodruff Health Science Center.
With an option of attending either or both introductory and advanced sessions, the seminars are designed to bring employees up-to-speed on Outlook, find answers to specific questions, and pick up useful, quick-start tip sheets. Seating is limited and registration is required. Register online at http://it.emory.edu/ehc-training. The Web site is being updated frequently to reflect changes in seminar locations, dates and times, so if employees don’t find a time or location that works for them, they should check back at the site frequently for updates.
Additional learning resources — tip sheets, help documents and user guides — are linked off the Healthcare Exchange Project Web site at http://it.emory.edu/ehc-exchange. Find answers to frequently asked questions, service details, and advice on how to prepare in advance for the move. For example, employees should begin now to pare down their e-mail inboxes, deleting nonessential e-mail and attachments, and backing up critical messages. Personal distribution lists should be divided into sublists if they contain more than 100 individual names.
Once the account migration begins, a dedicated telephone support center at 8-INFO (404-778-4636), staffed by Emory Healthcare Information Services, AAIT, and LSP volunteers from Rollins School of Public Health, Candler School of Theology, Emory College and NetCom, will be available Monday through Friday from 6 a.m. until 8:30 p.m. to answer questions and assist