Tech Strategy and Implementation

Client: Western Reserve Transit Authority – Comprehensive Plan for Advanced Public Transportation System (APTS)

Role: Strategic Planning, Business Process Redesign, Project Management Office, Procurement Support and Implementation

Objective: Development of a Comprehensive Plan for an Advanced Public Transportation System (APTS), Development of RFP, Procurement Support and Implementation Management

Background and Solution:
Mindboard was engaged in developing a Comprehensive Plan for Advanced Public Transportation System (APTS) at the Western Reserve Transit Authority (WRTA). Mindboard initiated this project by interviewing key WRTA personnel in an effort to understand WRTA's APTS vision. Following our analysis of the interview findings, reviewing WRTA services, facilities and IT resources, and shadowing critical business processes and documents, we defined WRTA's APTS vision. Based on our observations and findings, Mindboard developed document shadowing tables, dataflow maps, “As-Is” process maps, application architecture maps, network architecture maps, and functional maps. Furthermore, we conducted a SWOT analysis of WRTA information technology and conducted a systems audit of business-critical systems including Trapeze, Maximus, FleetMate, Fleetlynx, ABRA, and ABS. Based on our reviews we defined APTS specific future requirements for WRTA.

The Mindboard team conducted a benchmark study and best practices review to identify gaps in WRTA’s APTS processes and developed an APTS Action Plan. Mindboard identified suitable applications that fit WRTA's future requirements and budget allocations. Mindboard additionally prepared an APTS implementation plan and defined technical specifications for selected applications and developed a request for proposal (RFP) for identified APTS.

Mindboard also managed the APTS vendor review and procurement process by evaluating vendor proposals, developing vendor information packets, conducting qualitative and quantitative analyses, managing vendor demonstrations, providing recommendation for vendor selection, and conducting contract negotiations with selected vendor.

Mindboard also served as the Project Manager throughout the duration of the implementation of selected technologies, working on behalf of WRTA to ensure that projects were delivered on time, within budget and with the highest levels of quality.

Client: Large Suburban Water Agency

Role: IT Assessment & RFP Development

Objective: Comprehensive Peer Review of the Large Suburban Water Agency’s Technology and Business Systems, and IT Support Services RFP Development and Vendor Selection

Background and Solution:
Large Suburban Water Agency (“Agency”) engaged Mindboard to conduct an independent comprehensive peer review of the Agency’s technology and business systems to ensure the effectiveness and reliability of its Information Technology environment. The initiative was aimed at identifying and assessing critical challenges of the Agency’s IT function and ensuring that the Agency maintains its IT infrastructure and operations according to the industry standards and best practices.

Mindboard’s approach in conducting this study included three major phases,
1) Data Gathering,
2) Critical Analysis and
3) Recommendation Development.

During the data-gathering phase, Mindboard Project Team (“Project Team”) obtained information through a series of on-site interviews and also reviewing available documentation. Personal interviews were utilized as the primary tool for data gathering, which enabled the Project Team to obtain a clear picture of the challenges faced by the Agency at present. The critical analysis phase was utilized to synthesize the information captured into an actionable format. A major part of the analysis phase was to develop a comprehensive GAP analysis, utilizing prior information gathered, combined with our institutional knowledge of public sector IT best practices. As part of the gap analysis process, Mindboard utilized a three-dimensional approach, namely People, Process, and Technology (PPT) to develop a high-level understanding of the current state of the Agency IT environment by assessing how these three elements interact with each other within the Agency. Finally, recommendations were developed utilizing key findings from the gap analysis. For implementation purposes, Mindboard categorized the strategic recommendations to immediate (0-3 months), short term (3-12 months), and medium term (12 – 36 months), and long term (36-60 months).

The Agency also engaged Mindboard to assist them in the IT Support Services Request for Proposal Development and Vendor Selection. To develop comprehensive RFP document, we conducted series of interviews to various department personnel to gather information what services are rendered right now and what services they want the new IT Support vendor to render. Following the interview and outcome of comprehensive analysis of Agency’s technology infrastructure, we developed the RFP document in two segments – Managed Services and On-demand services. After publishing the RFP document, we are currently conducting proposal evaluation and analyzing the received proposals from the cost benefit analysis viewpoint. After this analysis, we will participate in the vendor demonstration for short listed vendors and then conduct next round of qualification check via references. We will also assist the Agency in contract negotiation and development of contract performance matrix for monitoring and control.