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From the Operations Director: Kudos on Successful SII Launch

Operations Director Alexander Merola.

About a year ago, a number of critical projects were initiated as part of the SLAC Improvement Initiative, under the very capable leadership of its manager, Elizabeth Caplun. These projects have now been rolled-out into the line organizations responsible for providing the new or improved services. This past Tuesday, the Operations Division celebrated this successful transition at a luncheon of SII participants. The celebration marked a major milestone in our efforts to improve the SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory's infrastructure and services in support of our scientific mission.

The SII has provided us with a methodology of business planning to ensure that our indirect offerings are aligned with the SLAC Agenda and scientific priorities. As a result of another SII effort in requirements management, we are now able to ensure that our service and infrastructure offerings are conducted within Department of Energy and Stanford requirements. A project called Command Media, still in its early stages, will provide consistent and easy access to our future online services; the next step is to choose the underlying media, and that is not an easy choice! We are in the midst of potentially migrating our finance and human resources enterprise systems to the Stanford systems. Early indicators are that such a move would make our systems both more effective and efficient. In addition, offerings in work planning and control, great improvements in procurement, and individual SLAC-wide Roles, Responsibilities, Authorities and Accountabilities, or R2A2s, are all being rolled into the responsible organizations.

The SII participants, from left to right: Ray Horgan, James Burtnett, Lori Pirri, Matt Cramar, Denise Tarka, Vickee Flynn, Stephanie Weitzenkamp, Elizabeth Caplun, Stan Cohelan, Persis Drell, Bob Cowles, Sharon West, Steve WIlliams, Karen Lawrence, Carmella Huser, Frank Topper, Doug Kreitz, Pat Kreitz and Sandy Merola. (Click on image for larger version.)

As Persis noted at the celebration luncheon, we owe a great debt to Elizabeth and the SII staff for getting us pointed in the right direction and for keeping their commitments on their deliverables. The SII is the engine that brought us to where we are, and the entire Operations leadership team is committed to seeing these projects through to their final implementation. The individuals behind the SII, having successfully delivered, are now returning to their home organizations.

The SII provided a unique opportunity to bring together talented people from departments across the lab. They used their skills, experience and creativity to lay out the best possible administrative tools and services. Elizabeth commented that, "It was a privilege to work with such a dedicated team. Its members contributed the best of themselves, rethinking support processes and setting the stage for service improvement. If promised the same team, I would do it again."

"As we look forward to making SLAC the best lab in the complex, it is important to assess where we are and appreciate what brought us here," Persis said. "Many thanks to the SII staff for their contributions in this endeavor."

—Alexander Merola
SLAC Today, November 14, 2008