is a Project Leader for the United Nations Population Fund
, the United Nation's reproductive health and rights agency. His team is currently going through a major Information and Computer Technology (ICT transformation) which is a project that will take around 4 years to complete. In this post, you will hear Navin share his experiences using various Atlassian products to support his work and that help other UN agencies, Government, and non-profit organizations that are also going through ICT Transformations.
What UN agency do you work for? What is your role?
I am currently working for United Nations Population Fund (UNPF) the United Nation reproductive health and rights agency. We are currently going through a major ICT Transformation for next 4 years (2018-2021). I am the Project Lead for few initiatives that we have.
What kind of business processes do you automate with Jira?
One of the initiatives that we have is to explore and deploy off-the-shelf (OTS) tools to automate few of our business processes that are outside the ERP systems. We have about 20 to 30 custom applications that are built in past 15+ years, some of these may get absorbed in ERP but we needed to find more efficient and cost-effective solution for remaining applications/processes. As you know OTS tools like JIRA Core, Confluence and JIRA Service Desk are much more cost-effective and easier & faster to deploy/launch.
What are some of the emergency fund requests for? How does Jira Service Desk help triage + get these requests attention in an efficient way?
Here are some of the examples:
During the humanitarian situations or preparedness, we have about one-third of our country offices (about 30 to 40) submitting emergency fund requests that have gone through multiple-work flow checks and we need to measure where the bottlenecks are. This whole process was happening in email and there was no way to track the status and do a reporting & analytics on it. We have now automated this process in phase 1 and there are over 20 transitions we had to develop/configure. We integrated it with our ERP system (PeopleSoft). In phase 2 we are including Fast Track Procedures (another business process related to emergency funds/situations) process in JIRA core.
We procure a lot of stuff for the countries where we have programs. So, one of the major & ambitious re-platforming projects that I am currently leading and will be using JIRA and doing integrations with AoDocs (Google Drive based Document Management System), G-Suite (we use Google apps for business for our corporate email hosting). This is to plan for procurement, buy/request for procurement, track the POs and manage the suppliers. This will also have integration with the above business process (#1) because that also involve procurement in emergency situations.
Automating and improving our annual country program review process.
We are currently using a custom-built service desk system which has outlived but has cool features customized for our needs. This system handles IT as well as Non-IT related service requests and has country level, regional level, and global teams/routing mechanism. But now we are planning to do everything inside JIRA Service Desk (JSD) and our plan is to launch Global Service Desk using JSD by Q4 2018. This is another major milestone we have to accomplish under this ICTx initiative. To your point, if JSD can help triage emergency requests, absolutely, that's the plan. And we need experts and mentors/guide like you who can guide us in right direction.
Most of these processes are very common in UN system and almost every UN agency has this process. I must say the timing of introduction of JIRA Core was perfect. We started exploring the use of JIRA Core in early 2017 and JIRA Core for UN Processes (like you have for HR, Travel etc.) could be one of the template/processes that Atlassian can introduce.
Can you provide more details about how your team uses connectors to interact with your ERP system?
Our ERP system is a closed one at this point and there are no APIs exposed because the ERP system is shared among about 10 UN agencies. But we integrate with ERP system using intermediate databases and batch destructive refresh scripts etc.