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How SRNS Used PeopleSoft Page and Field Configurator to Avoid Customizations

Savannah River Nuclear Solutions (SRNS) was able to leverage the PeopleSoft Page and Field Configurator in several use cases as an alternative to making customizations.

  • SRNS leveraged Page and Field Configurator because the company has a priority on low customizations.
  • Page and Field Configurator was used to establish default values and page labels.
  • SRNS is incorporating verification of Page and Field Configurator as part of the PUM Image update cycle.

About Savannah River Nuclear Solutions

Savannah River Nuclear Solutions (SRNS) is the Managing and Operating Contractor for the Department of Energy (DOE) Savannah River Site (SRS), which was born in the midst of Cold War secrecy.

The Savannah River Site is located in the central Savannah River region near Aiken, South Carolina. This site has over 15,000 acres devoted to industrial facilities, research labs, and supporting infrastructure.

During the Cold War, the Savannah River Site produced one-third of the nation’s weapons-grade plutonium and all of the nation’s tritium—both integral components of nuclear weapons.

SRNS, made up of roughly 5,000 employees, processes and stores nuclear materials in support of national defense and U.S. nuclear proliferation efforts. Additionally, it develops and deploys technologies to improve the environment and treat nuclear and hazardous wastes left from the Cold War.

SRNS is responsible for:

  • The site’s nuclear facility operations, with the exception of the liquid waste facilities
  • The Savannah River National Laboratory
  • Environmental stewardship and cleanup
  • Disposition of nuclear material
  • All administrative functions

Visit Savannah River Nuclear Solutions’ Website

SRNS’ PeopleSoft Footprint

SRNS uses PeopleSoft 9.2 for Human Resources, Finance, and Supply Chain Management. The company also recently implemented a new PeopleSoft Update Manager (PUM) strategy and was able to use the tool to update to Image 26 and PeopleTools 8.54 in the Public Sector/Government environment.

SRNS has been on PeopleSoft FSCM since October 2011 and PeopleSoft HCM since 2002. For FSCM, SRNS is currently on PI 26 and are in the midst of upgrading to PI 25 for HCM. SRNS is currently on PeopleTools 8.56.07. All systems are managed on-premises. There are roughly 8,500 users within FSCM and 7,000 within HCM.

In July 2018, SRNS identified several use cases where Page and Field Configurator could be used in place of making customizations.

How are you using Page and Field Configurator?

SRNS identified two use cases for Page and Field Configurator:

  1. Defaulting values
  2. Page labels

The first use case, defaulting values, was identified because Return to Vendor/Supplier is a problematic area for SRNS. The RTC needs to be entered correctly, and there are many handoffs during the process. SRNS only wanted to use an RTV for Credit and Replace, not Exchange. If it is not entered correctly, downstream processing is not smooth and causes more work on the back end.

Before implementing Page and Field Configurator, SRNS invested more time and money in training. Even then, they faced frequent turnover and continued errors. A customization that would remove Exchange from the dropdown option could have been requested, but the organization had a priority on low customizations. SRNS ultimately decided they needed a structural change.  Therefore, SRNS decided to leverage the Page and Field Configurator.

With Page and Field Configurator, the team changed the default return action to Replace instead of Exchange. Users could still select Credit as needed. Exchange was still an option, but it wouldn’t be the default.

In the define item page, there are delivered custom fields reserved for an organization’s use. The second use case, page labels, was identified because SRNS had a purpose for several fields and wanted the page/field label to reflect those purposes.

Without Page and Field Configurator, SRNS could have customized to the desired label. Although the customization would be low complexity, it was not the desired action because the company tries to stay away from customizations. With Page and Field Configurator, they were able to change the page/field label to reflect the desired label.

During testing, SRNS realized that the labels should match on the Review Items page, which required additional configuration because PeopleSoft Query does not reflect the configured label.

Did you utilize any other applications or tools during this process?

SRNS utilized PeopleSoft Application Designer to include Related Content Services for each component that was configured. Related definitions included Content Configurations and Content Layout.

Application Data Sets (ADS) was used for the migration of the configuration, and the ADS definition EOCC_CONFIGURATION was used for each component that was configured.

What is your approach for lifecycle management?

Lifecycle management was one of the main concerns that SRNS had. Just like with any new functionality, SRNS wanted to ensure that as they did maintenance components like system updates, PUM Images, Selective Adoption, PeopleTools, etc., they didn’t lose any of the configurable functionality that they set up with Page and Field Configurator.

The approach that they came up with meant that verification of Page and Field Configurator use would need to be included as part of a PUM Image update project to assess the impacts. The tool provides a mechanism to validate the component, but it includes very limited information.

What was your experience after going live with changes made with Page and Field Configurator?

A few months after go-live, in November, the number of Return to Vendor use of Exchange moved from 21 to zero. This number may seem small, but it was quite impactful at SRNS.

SRNS also identified another potential use case after the July implementation—using Page and Field Configurator to hide tabs on a page (Report Manager). However, SRNS determined that the best approach was to utilize security permission lists instead.

There was one issue found during the refresh of environments where the configuration was brought down but did not seems to be applied to the portal registry. However, the IT team was able to update the refresh script and fix the problem.

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