Pre-Conference Seminars

For an outstanding professional development opportunity, register for our pre-conference seminars!

Understanding Your Customer Service Experience and Journey Mapping and Data Collection

IT Governance: A Hands-On Approach to Defining Policies and Process

Be a Leader Who Inspires Others: Transforming Yourself into the Leader You are Meant to Be

They will be held on Sunday, October 1, 2017.
Registration opens on May 1.


Understanding Your Customer Service Experience and Journey Mapping and Data Collection
Cara Giacomini and Shea Jacobson
1:00pm – 5:00pm

Our customers have increasingly complex expectations regarding our service offerings and delivery. Is it enough to think in terms of customer service or do we need to have a richer understanding of their full customer experience? The customer’s experience is their physical and emotional perception of interactions with services, people, processes, and communication channels. In this seminar, we will start to map and understand your customer’s journey through and experience with your organization, while providing proven data-collection strategies to measure and optimize the overall customer experience.

No matter what your role within your IT organization, if you are interacting with customers, you will benefit from this session.

Upon completion, participants will

  1. Understand the difference between customer service and customer experience
  2. Begin to map the customer journey for your organization
  3. Identify appropriate data-collection options for answering research questions or measuring progress toward organizational goals

We will give you a framework to take back to your organization so that you are not thinking about these experiences in isolation. We guarantee you won’t be bored during this seminar!

Picture of Cara GiacominiCara Giacomini, PhD
Senior Research Scientist
Customer Service & Support
University of Washington — Information Technology

Cara Giacomini is research scientist with extensive experience conducting quantitative and qualitative studies. Her work helps the University understand the technology usage and support trends of faculty, students, staff, and researchers. She is also responsible for efforts in peer benchmarking and continual service improvement. In 2003, Cara received her PhD in English and Textual Studies from the University of Washington. Her scholarship and teaching focused on the Digital Humanities.

Shea Jacobson
Program Operations Analyst
University of Washington — Information Technology

Shea Jacobson is a Program Operations Analyst for the IT Department at the University of Washington. She works with colleagues in various positions to produce and interpret data in reliable and visually informative ways. Shea assists the University of Washington leadership to make informed decisions about the services they offer and the support they provide. She is responsible for collecting, visualizing, and inferring trends from operational data and is involved in peer benchmarking efforts. In early 2016, Shea graduated from the University of Washington with a Bachelor’s Degree in Statistics.


IT Governance: A Hands-On Approach to Defining Policies and Process
Tom Gerace
1:00pm – 5:00pm

We  all talk about IT Governance but what is it and how is effective governance designed?

The value of information technology results in part from effective IT governance – the organization’s allocation of IT decision rights and accountability. As such, IT governance is a set of policies and associated processes that defines WHAT decisions must be made, WHO should make the decisions, and HOW the decisions will be made and monitored. In this workshop, we will discuss how Tulane University’s Technology Services led the effort to define an institutional IT governance policy and build a set of processes that support decision-making from request to budgetary approval.

You  will learn how Tulane successfully employed a committee-driven approach to define the principles, policies, and processes for IT governance. Participants  will also discover how to improve results by managing request intake and assessment, explore how IT governance helps align resources and business strategy, and see how Tulane developed a tool to facilitate moving requests through the evaluation and approval process as well as to give management insight into the institutional value and risk of requests.

Session participants will be challenged to think about how they might define the principles and policies for their institutions. Attendees will follow the same committee-driven steps used at Tulane. We will use a matrixed approach to identify the best archetype (monarchy, feudal, federal, duopoly, anarchy) to assign decision rights within the five key IT decisions of IT principles, IT architecture, IT infrastructure, business application needs, and IT investment.

Upon completion, participants will be able to:
1. Understand how IT governance helps align resources and business strategy
2. Think about how to define the institutional decision-making process for IT projects
3. Define a tool to facilitate the committee-based decision-making process

This workshop is designed for anyone who wants to learn about IT governance and how it can help the decision-making process at their institutions. This workshop is also designed for anyone who has been thinking about IT governance and wants to get something started! The hardest part of any journey is taking that first step. Let’s get you on your way!

Tom Gerace is Assistant Vice President for Enterprise Services with Tulane University’s Technology Services. He manages instructional technologies, on-site support, and the Network Operations Center, which monitors the state of production systems and provides help desk services. Tom’s focus is on the value that IT provides to the teaching, research, and administrative missions of the University. Tom earned a BS degree in Computer Science from Louisiana State University and an MBA from Tulane University, and was awarded Senior Member status in the Association for Computing Machinery.

Tom has presented papers, led discussions, and chaired sessions at many ACM SIGUCCS conferences since 1984. He has facilitated discussions at EDUCAUSE Connect, presented at ServiceNow’s Knowledge Conference, and spoken before numerous corporate audiences.


Be a Leader Who Inspires Others: Transforming Yourself into the Leader You are Meant to Be
Joan Cheverie and Beth Rugg
1:00pm – 5:00pm

Leaders must leverage practices that inspire, engage and empower others. Shifting from high-performing individual contributor to outstanding manager can be challenging. You are no longer only responsible for yourself; you are responsible for a team of individuals. The critical challenge for managers includes:

  • Learning how to intentionally shift between the different demands of leadership – from visionary, to administrative, to inspiring staff to want to do the work that the organization needs to be done and to carry it out independent of direct management oversight;
  • Problem solving with your colleagues to enable you to build a sense of community, collegiality and trust; and
  • Developing effective communication strategies for transparency, inclusivity, and conflict resolution within your department and across the wider organization.

This workshop will introduce you to techniques to successfully navigate this crucial shift. You will come to understand how your current position as manager differs from your position as individual contributor and how this difference requires a revised resilience as you embrace the various roles required of you to lead your department effectively. Understanding these different roles – ranging from the nuts and bolts administration of the department to creating and building buy-in for the vision of the department – will help you prioritize your work and translate immediately and directly into more effectively managing your day-to-day prioritization challenges.

The workshop will be organized into brief content segments followed by an interactive activity and discussion with peers, as well as the larger group. Participants will leave the workshop with a set of tools and assessments to help them become more effective managers and leaders.
Upon completion, participants will:

  1. Better understand the transitions you experience as you shift from individual performer to manager and leader
  2. Learn tools and techniques that will help you inspire, engage, and empower your staff
  3. Gain insights into some of the core competencies, skills, and sensibilities required of you to be an effective leader

Joan Cheverie is the Director, Professional Development for EDUCAUSE. In this capacity, she supports and promotes community collaboration in order to enable EDUCAUSE to design professional programs to advance IT leadership in higher education, with a specific focus on those who lead, manage, and use information resources to shape strategic decisions. Prior to this position, she served as a Policy Specialist for the EDUCAUSE Washington Office, which dealt with critical IT policy issues arising both in Washington, D.C., and on campus. Joan joined EDUCAUSE in 2011 from Georgetown University where she was the Head of Copyright and Rights Management. She previously held positions as head of digital services, head of government documents, and reference librarian. She has also served as a Visiting Program Officer for the Coalition for Networked Information, and she was a 2008 Fellow from the Frye Leadership Institute. She holds a Bachelor’s degree from Mount Holyoke College, a Master’s degree in Library and Information Science from The Catholic University of America, and a second Master’s degree from Georgetown University where her thesis was entitled, “The Intellectual Land Grab: How Does the Public Domain Fare in the Networked Environment?”.

Beth Rugg is the Assistant Vice Chancellor for Client Engagement at the University of North Carolina Charlotte. She began her IT career in 2001 working at Ithaca College as Student Employee and Computer Lab Coordinator. Prior to that she worked in the hospitality industry and in Student Affairs. She have a BS in Hotel Administration from Cornell University and is a certified Project Management Professional (PMP).

She champions service and support and has extensive service management experience overseeing service desks, desktop support, labs, instructional support and design, digital media production, technology acquisition and renewal, training, documentation and communication. She has led many administrative and academic initiatives and recently implemented a unified service catalog for UNC Charlotte central and distributed IT.

She has been an Executive Board member of the Association for Computing Machinery Special Interest Group University and College Computing Services (ACM SIGUCCS) organization and led the development of their professional mentoring program. She is passionate about customers and making sure we take their experiences and perspectives into account.

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