This page contains sections of questions raised by potential vendors interested in providing a solution for one of our Open Calls as well as the respective answers from CISV International (made public as per the rules set forward in the respective Request-for-Proposal (RfP).

 

INTERNATIONAL NGO SEEKS ENTERPRISE-SOLUTION FOR MANAGING ITS INTERCULTURAL PROGRAMMES AND PARTICIPANTS

Following is the Q&A section for the RfP for Project "Melville"

General Technology & Architecture

The overall volume of this project is huge as per the description in the RfP. Do you envision to have all of the requirements fulfilled within the project currently advertised?
We assume to receive proposals with multiple different approaches towards tackling the amount of work to accomplish for our new system. The modularization and prioritization gives a feel about what we envision to be most important and less important. "Must-have" qualified user stories within a module that has a lower priority overall do not necessarily mean, that the module has to be completed with highest priority. Also, we appreciate very much to be provided with a realistic implementation plan and schedule for "waved" go-live of functions.
Is Microsoft Dynamics an option?
We are not limiting ourselves or any vendor with regards to options. When considering Microsoft Dynamics or any other COTS, we would especially look into
  • onetime or ongoing licensing costs
  • the architecture brought forward with regards to user accounts versus records versus contacts ...
  • the integration opportunities with our existing IT landscape
  • how our existing AD can be leveraged (and if not, what other options there are for AAA)
Would you consider the forms module and the ability to move your forms to online a priority?
As per the RfP. However, a smart proposal for how to handle our forms will be much appreciated. Also, if such a solution can be implemented within one of the more early project phases.
When we look at migration: What exactly has to be migrated? Are we talking about an initial migration of base data? Has historical data also to be migrated? For which parts of the proposal data to be migrated does exist?
myCISV today provides a historical track record of any programme participation that a registrant has ever done. Hence, all records about CISV programmes and CISV events and the respective participation records have to be migrated into the new system, as have to be the user records (we would appreciate an intelligent way to clean out and consolidate duplicate records but also potentially understand to having to appreciate the fact that this is not possible during migration and has to be accomplished afterwards).

myCISV today contains the data for the “Officials Directory” (user records are assigned to roles and NAs and a view provides this information on the myCISV web). This information needs to be migrated. Users in official roles need to be consolidated with (or assigned to or connected to) user accounts on the active directory as these persons normally already hold an account in our AD and use it e.g. for login to SharePoint, while the Directory today is still fueled from myCISV.

Depending on the solution proposed, we may want to look into adding information about users from other sources (databases or systems in place; e.g. the SharePoint site to manage Risk Management IRFs – Incident Report Forms).

The Programme databases explained in a separate Q&A item might hold data that proves useful for the new system and we value taking this into account when planning migration but cannot give an opinion here without knowing details about the envisioned new solution.

Forms (currently PDFs or Word or …) will potentially be found within the new system in some way or the other.
Requirements 92, 96: 1 dot and 2 dots. What does that mean?
Nothing of any importance (we had run a requirements workshop, and transferring hand-written cards into a computer file was distributed among a few people; some of them denoted the number of dots put to the card for prioritization, others didn’t – however, the result of the workshop is what the RfP appendix shows overall, so the mentioning of the dots is of no importance anymore)
Modeller Solution / Multiple suppliers: would CISV consider issuing contracts to more than one vendor where no single company can deliver all requirements?
In theory, why not. As per our multifold requirements, there might be no single vendor, being able to deliver an appropriate solution for us. So, joint collaborations with different partners are indeed an option. However, CISV is not equipped with appropriate persons to lead such a multi-company project; so we would need to see a setup being proposed which we can gain trust into that it works out for us.
Multi-Langauge: Do you envision to provide the system in multiple different languages?
The RfP lists a few expectations in this respect, but only for very particular functions/features.

Our current system "myCISV" is operated in English only. We are open for suggestions for a multi-lingual system, but cannot guarantee to use it or would envision a strong benefit as translating pages, features, UIs, etc. into the languages of our member associations would be a very time consuming process where we wouldn't even be able to accurately word certain terms in the respective foreign language. So, English will be our main focus language-wise.
Can you provide any further detail on the IT projects for eliminating the Forms and AD?
The AD elimination is just the logical consequence when having moved all accounts to our Azure AD; the Azure AD will remain, we expect, for quite some time. For services not part of Office 365 (at the moment mainly a moodle eLearning solution and a website platform based on wordpress) we use OAuth2 or LDAPS as an authentication method (unfortunately at the moment without automatic AD-based authorization; authorization is done in the respective system)

CISV Processes

myCISV heavily deals with participants and programmes. From the creation of a programme to the journey there are several steps that build up some kind of workflow. At which state should myCISV be the platform to be used to manage a programme? What is the overall workflow to be implemented here?

Another answer to one of the questions raised relates to forms. We have included simple forms flows there to illustrate the usage of our forms. That answer also shows details about our Programme management workflows. We would see them as multiple inter-related flows if seen from the perspective of different roles. You will understand these details when looking at the forms flows Q&A item further below.

NOTE, we use the term “Programme” (with a capital “P”) as one of our 7 educational experiences (Village, Youth Meeting, …) and “programme” for a specific Village or Youth Meeting or Step Up or …

The calendar in CISV more or less follows the very-same sequence of events each year; briefly described, these are:

  • In May-June, NAs and Chapters file their hosting plans with CISV International by providing the Host and Invitation data sheets. The hosting plans apply for the year after the current year as at this time of the year the current main Programme season is in full preparation
  • July-August: We (IO staff) plan the invitations to the various programmes hosted in the following year
  • In September, Programme details (for the coming Programme season) are imported from a spreadsheet into myCISV. Where details change during the year, myCISV is updated directly. Programme details include: reference number (the unique identifier), Host NA, Host Chapter, start dates, end dates. Also, we share the invitations with the CISV NAs in the world (i.e.: CISV NAs now know, which programmes their members are able to attend in the coming year)
  • until around January: NAs and Chapters recruit participants for their Progamme invitations; also they build the staff teams for the Programmes, they host
  • Programme staff claim participation during the year. This is an ongoing process. IO staff approve their claim and upgrade them to the role “programme manager”. Mostly, the IO staff will not know who the staff will be so this is a judgement call. In the current system, IO staff do not receive any alerts that a claim has been made, so unfortunately, a regular manual check is needed
  • March-April: the spring programme season sees the hosting of normally around 15 Youth Meetings in different parts of the world
  • During the months prior to their programme, delegations with their leaders or individual participants prepare for the programme, receive programme information (PreCamp documents), fill and distribute forms (currently mostly paper work and scanned documents) and share information with the programme staff through different media (e.g. facebook closed groups are very popular for staff-leader communication)
  • The closer to the programme, the more individual participants (other staff, leaders, JCs, delegates) claim participation to their programme in myCISV. “programme manager” role persons (programme staff) can approve these participation claims in myCISV. This is an ongoing process. Often, they will not know who the participants will be, and must rely on the Host Information with Invitations report (i.e. a list of countries who will attend the programme), or cross check with any Delegation Information Forms (DIF) that they have received. Staff of the programme should receive an e-mail alerting them when a claim has been made, but reports on the reliability of this feature in myCISV vary heavily (sometime also because the person has not updated their personal profile information accordingly and an e-mail address is outdated)
  • June - August: the main CISV programme season with CISVers around the world hosting and participating in our reknown educational experiences. During the execution of a programme, programme quality information is collected and filed in the PDPEF form at or after the end of the programme
  • This is submitted to the IO (August and beyond) and used for (a) statistical, historical Programme data and (b) quality evaluation and track records about adults taking responsibility for children (leaders, staff)
What is the release plan for myCISV? When should the first version go live? I assume there are periods where going live is possible and where ongoing workflows prohibit to go live?
Each year, the month of May sees the start of the intense preparation phase for our main programme season (Northern hemisphere summer). It ends (with evaluations being collected) in September. Hence, please avoid May to September for any major system changes. March-April and December-January are the periods for our smaller programme seasons with only a handful programmes. GoLives in these periods are also not ideal (thinkable for a portion of functionality, depending on their nature and proper planning and testing). Perfect times for GoLives are February, October or November.
In the features listed in the appendix, RTF application is mentioned. Can you please explain what is meant by that?
RTF = Regional Training Forum. This is one of the CISV Events which is not a Programme. It is a gathering of CISVers for the purpose of receiving training. Training offers at an RTF vary from Risk Management and Train-the-Trainer to Programme trainings for Village, StepUp, Interchange, etc. or “Essentials of Peace Education” about our core educational approach. For RTFs, a registration platform is currently in place (while myCISV participation claims to RTFs is also possible in parallel; in essence a redundancy, yes, but myCISV doesn’t offer the information to be collected that is needed with registering to an RTF). We are currently looking at leveraging a plugin in our Website Platform for RTF registration; the plugin is called “Events Manager” and is used by several NAs already today for their local event registrations like Minicamps.
Some of the requirements concern “Forms”. Can you please describe how they are organized now and what the proposed workflow / usage of those forms is to get a better understanding?
We have provided detailed information about the forms we use as well as their various formats and the process within which they are used -> here.
Can you provide any further detail on the IT projects for eliminating the Forms and AD?
The current forms solution is an InfoPath solution on SharePoint 2007 connected trickily with our EasySite myCISV. This solution is being re-build at the moment based on locked-down Excel-files for the forms itself; these files are put onto SharePoint Online with a smart permissions system to only allow eligible persons into the respective form; the new solution at the moment involves some (bearable) manual effort to maintain the permissions (however: less than the InfoPath based solution).

User Account / Single Contact Record

How many Office 365 users?
We have currently (Feb 12th) 553 licensed Office 365 users. Only about 25 of them also have mailboxes. The others are configured with forward addresses and do not use Mail.

Additionally, we have close to 5.000 user records in the system. Obviously the majority of these are unlicensed; some of them may be using their account to login into integrated system through OAuth2/SAML.
How many Domains are you operating?
We operate essentially one domain: cisv.org

In Office 365 we have configured all our subdomains (i.e. XX.cisv.org - where XX is a 2digit code for the country) as authoritative domains.

All user accounts are within these (sub)domains.
Users active in standing Committees and the Board
All our committee and board members hold active user accounts in our system.
  • Chapter Development: 8 members
  • Conferences & Events: 8 members
  • Educational Programmes: 9 members
  • Training & Quality Assurance: 7 members
  • Resources&Infrastructure: 10 members
  • Governing Board: 10 members
  • International Junior Branch: 15 members

All of these are registered users on our Office 365 tenant, though only few of them also use mailboxes.
From what we can see, CISV have around 55,000 members worldwide. Shall all of them be able to access their member record?
Yes. Currently, every member who registers in myCISV is able to see and manage their profile.

As per the answer before about existing O365 users, you can see that we are not necessarily envisioning that this profiles (member records, single contact records) are all setup inside Office365 and equipped with an Office365 license. We are not aware of what the limitations are to the user count in O365 and would need support / consultancy in taking the right decision in this respect. However, we do see the need for a simple member without any special role or permission level to at least see his (and others') profile records and amend his own record as need be.
When we are talking about user registration the question arises how many users could be created in the Active Directory without producing extra costs for CISV considering the contract with Microsoft?
As stated in the RfP, CISV is operating an Office 365 NGO tenant. As far as we know – and we are not experts in that respect – we can have unlimited user objects in our Active Directory at no cost. NOTE, however, that the AD included with Office 365 is – as far as we know – a Basic License AD; many enhanced functionalities require Premium P1 or Premium P2 licensing which comes at cost also for NGOs (one example for a P1 requirement is group-based app enablement). For all current users we run an Office 365 license which does not include the Office desktop Apps (Outlook, Word, Excel, PowerPoint, OneNote, Publisher, Access). These Apps are licensed through a different contract but may be transferred to Office 365 licenses soon. Every licensed user as per our license reportedly is granted a 1TB personal file storage (OneDrive; we haven’t ever tested that). Also, our license allows for – as far as we know – unlimited SharePoint site deployments with a baseline storage of 1TB and 500MB per license deployed. Again: We are not experts in Microsoft licensing, hence the above are assumptions. We would value clarity about cost expectations in any proposal.
How many users are currently in the myCISV system? How many users are planned to be in this directory within the next 5 years? (Approximately)
The user count in the admin backend of myCISV currently shows 87.257. A DB select query reveals 89.646 user records. Root cause for the deviation is unknown at the moment. Our expectation is that a fair number of these user records are duplicate user records referring to one and the same natural person. We want to avoid such duplicates in future and must seek opportunities to consolidate.

The myCISV database shows 12.882 individual CISV Programmes and Events. Events are organized CISV experiences (could be trainings (RTF), Junior Branch workshops, (formerly) AIMs or for instance the Global Conference) which are run by the CISV rules and policies but are not CISV Programmes. Claim for participation is possible in myCISV for all of these Programmes and Events.

Further, the myCISV database shows 120.775 individual participation claims (i.e. a user having assigned themselves to one of our Programmes or Events). However, the number of unique user accounts having claimed any participation is 54.075, which gives a glimpse about the statistical(!) number of participations per myCISV user.

Over the next 5 years, forecast estimate is for an additional 49.000 users. This figure takes account of:
  • Growth ambitions; assumes 10% participation growth per year
  • % of first time participants (using % taken from 2018 programme review data)
This does not take account of any historical users registering for the first time

Document Management / Resources / Library

SharePoint Skills in CISV
You mention in the RFP that CISV have O365 and SharePoint skills:
  • Are these all inhouse? - Some of our users are sufficiently experienced to handle SharePoint from a user perspective. A handful of people have SharePoint administration and implementation skills. We would estimate our admin skills stronger than our implementation skills
  • How many? - As said above: Only a handful
  • How many specific to SharePoint and what are their skill level? - Our inhouse skill level does not exceed simple List, DocLib and/or Page implementation and configuration. Our skill level in managing permissions and using these to our benefit is fairly good. We have no knowledge in implementing specifically coded webparts. For the current SharePoint Online setup and configuration, we used professional support by an external consultant.
Where are you storing your documents and where would you envision them to be stored in future?
We are leveraging SharePoint to a large extent. Historically, we have been using a FileServer within the International Office, but its use decreases gradually as we move to SharePoint gradually.

Ideally, a new solution allows us to keep what we have already built on SharePoint. If this is not the case, a feasible migration path shall be outlined.

Programme Management, Claims, Participation

Programmes are currently managed in Access databases. Is it possible to get a database diagram to get a better understanding of the data structure that has to be managed?
We have provided a brief description of these management databases here!

RfP Formalities, Proposal Process

Is there a format/layout required for the response? The table at the back of the document is an ideal backlog of requirements that we would use to create Sprints.
No preference with regards to format of response; we can basically open anything that’s compatible with office/desktop software (Microsoft Office, PDF reader, Open Office, Libre Office, … cannot think of anything more sophisticated at the moment). Maybe, please avoid Visio or mind-mapping diagrams using not so well known software (though even these might be possible)

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