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Redesigned Gportal Financial improves processing of graduate student awards

In March, the Graduate College launched an upgraded tool for staff in academic departments across the university to enter University Graduate Fellowships and the student aid benefits (tuition and/or health insurance awards) for graduate appointments at ASU. Since the launch over 3,320 awards have been entered.

The tool, known as Gportal Financial, was originally architected in 2006 when ASU implemented PeopleSoft Campus Solutions. Gportal Financial provides a modern user interface and the flexibility to use the application on any device, including smartphones, tablets and computers. The application was built in collaboration between the Graduate College and University Technology Office. The Graduate College brought back the original architect of Gportal Financial, Roger Lurie, out of retirement to manage the project. Lurie has worked on several technology projects and solutions in his 35 years at ASU and is pleased to be able to continue serving ASU and bringing efficient technology solutions to the university.

“Major changes to Gportal Financial were made to improve the user experience and interface, streamline processes for users, implement more efficient and transparent functionality and most importantly to improve the financial security,” said Graduate College’s Senior Director of Fiscal Business Services, Katrina Roalson. The project spanned approximately 26 months (beginning in January 2020) and included multiple focus groups to determine what changes and updates users required, coordinate with UTO developers, and get feedback from Graduate College “superusers”, graduate advisors, and university business personnel. “The team relied heavily on feedback, testing and troubleshooting from our colleagues throughout the university so that we could ensure the tool was both expeditious and fiscally sound for departments. We are so grateful for the time and energy invested in assisting us with the upgrade,” said Roalson.

Upon launching the upgraded version of Gportal Financial, over 130 staff were trained on how to navigate and use it to input funding for graduate students. As new staff join ASU in roles that will utilize the tool, they will be able to self-enroll in an Edge Training course on how to use the tool properly so that they can gain their appropriate roles within PeopleSoft. Roalson is quick to note that “our team will continue to be available to new and continuing users to answer questions and troubleshoot via email or our office hours” and “we will continue to find ways to improve and develop the tool going forward.”

Business Operations Manager with the New College of Interdisciplinary Arts and Sciences, Tomi St John, has been part of the user feedback and acceptance testing since the initial stages of the project. “The new GPortal system is a powerful, dynamic, easy-to-use tool that ensures fiscal responsibility and transparency,” said St John. “I personally think the upgraded system was long overdue and a welcome step forward for the management of student awards!”

The successful launch and implementation of the new Gportal Financial tool helps to advance the Graduate College’s overall mission of supporting graduate programs and the success of our students. “The Graduate College continues to seek ways to improve and integrate ASU technologies to streamline staff processes, make data more readily available while ensuring data and financial information remain secure,” said Brian Mattson, Graduate College executive director.


Gportal Financial training sessions

Register for Gportal Financial training session available via Zoom.

 

By Angela Mitchell