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Max’s Minute: IT Transparency

In his latest video, Max Davis-Johnson, Associate Vice President and Chief Information Officer, discusses the importance of transparency in building trust, reducing uncertainty, opening communication, and motivating higher performance within the Office of Information Technology.

Max highlights several ways in which OIT maintains transparency, and acknowledges that, while OIT strives for transparency, there is always room for improvement.


Hi, this is Max Davis Johnson, Boise State University, Office of Information Technology (OIT).

Today I’m going to talk about transparency. Transparency: It builds trust, it reduces uncertainty, it opens communication and supplies users with information so we can make collaborative decisions. It lays the groundwork for accountability and it motivates OIT to perform at a higher level. So I want to tell you about some of the ways that OIT is transparent but with the caveat that we can always, always do better.

We have a Project Management Office and they have a project dashboard that you can go to anytime that’s updated on a weekly basis. It lists the status of all the current projects we’re working on, it shows you all the projects that have been completed over the last three months, then it shows you all the requests that are in the queue and are ready for us to work on when resources become available.

For larger projects we have dedicated web pages that have the current project status and these larger projects are typically ones that are University projects; they’re not just OIT projects, they’re University projects such as our Student Success Hub Salesforce advising initiative we currently are active on.

On our main OIT page we have last month’s Help Desk user statistics. You know, the number of calls we’ve taken, the customer satisfaction rate. Just as a reminder that anytime you submit a ticket to or you call the Help Desk and we create a ticket because we couldn’t answer your question at the beginning, you can track the status of of that ticket to completion.

We have monthly, and sometimes quarterly, what we call Communication and Collaboration Meetings with key departments and colleges where we talk through issues, concerns, we talk project status, we share information, and, you know, so we meet regularly with the Provost’s Office, Extended Studies, Finance, HR, Research, Office of Sponsored Projects, College of Health Sciences, Legal, Purchasing…we meet with all these groups on a regular basis.

We have what we call CTC, or Cross Team Coordination meetings on a weekly basis, and this is where we schedule system maintenance, system outages, because we have to do upgrades but it’s not just OIT making those decisions, it’s the university make making those system- type scheduling decisions.

Our web development teams and our Business Intelligence Reporting Services bi-weekly and monthly reviews of the products and the items that they’re working on with the user base to get immediate feedback, whether they’re on the right track or not, and then they make adjustments, and then they come back and do it again in either two weeks or a month time frame.

Also on our main web page we have new initiatives that that we’re working on, current information, it’s all on our (OIT) homepage.

We also provide on a quarterly basis an OIT Newsletter where we talk about new initiatives that we have coming, new products, new releases. We also remind people about, you know, security, being aware, all these type of things that we continually need to communicate to the user community.

Like I said, we try hard to be transparent, but certainly we can do better, so let us know. If you ever have any questions, reach out directly to me (, reach out to the Help Desk and we’ll make sure that your question gets to the right person.

So anyway, thank you for listening and until next time, bye.