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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ's)

1. Accessing SWP & SWP Team / Logging in

1.1 How do new members of staff gain access to load data on the SWP system?
1.2 Can I log into SWP with a MAC computer?
1.3 I want to use SWP at home, how can I access SWP when not at work?
1.4 Can I use any web browser to access SWP?
1.5 When I log into SWP I can see several tabs such as ‘LEIC16SBD’ which should I use to attach allowances against or to view in ‘SWP Team’?
1.6 What is SWP Team?
1.7 Should I be able to view other colleagues’ workloads on SWP Team at this web browser address https://scientiaportal.dmu.ac.uk
1.8 What should I do if I’ve tried access SWP Team at this web browser address but I can’t access it?
1.9 Will we have access to a test area, so we can have a play?

2. SWP Data

2.1 How often will the static data in SWP, such as staff be updated?
2.2 How often will the static data in SWP, such as modules and timetabled activities be updated?
2.3 The FTE (Full Time Equivalent) for a member of staff is incorrect, how can this be corrected?
2.4 What is the correct FTE value for a Part-time lecturer?
2.5 How do I ensure the FTE for a new starter is correct in SWP?
2.6 How does the SWP system account for mid-year new starters, to provide a proportion of the 550 hours maximum Formal Scheduled Teaching (FST) allocation?
2.7 A member of staff isn’t appearing in SWP, what should I do?
2.8 I was expecting to see a module available under a particular department but it’s not there, what should I do?
2.9 I have a member of staff who is teaching a portion of a longer teaching activity, how do I correctly record the teaching they will deliver?
2.10 Does the SWP system have Staff Absence Allowances?
2.11 When do we need to start adding data for the next academic year?
2.12 How are Off-Campus Teaching  allowances loaded on SWP? 
2.13 How are multi-staffed activity allowances proportioned in SWP?

3. Attaching Allowances

3.1 If I add an allowance to a module and then allocate a member of staff to it, will I then see that allowance attached to the member of staff when I look in the personal tab?
3.2 When you attach an allowance and then duplicate it for all objects, can you edit the allowance and copy these changes to all the objects?

4. WP Functionality

4.1 Is there an auto save function?
4.2 Can you undo any changes you make within SWP?
4.3 The Staff Allocation panel has disappeared from the Teaching, Learning and Assessment tab and I am unable to allocate staff to allowances attached to modules?
4.4 How can I hide or unhide columns in SWP?
4.5 I don’t understand some of the column names displayed in the column chooser dialogue box?
4.6 Can two (or more) members of staff make changes to same department at the same time? Is there any single user lock?
4.7 Can you use a wildcard search for a single character ‘?’
4.8 Is there a zoom function on SWP?

5. Printing in SWP

5.1 Is batch printing available? Printing an individual staff summary for lots of members of staff is too time consuming.
5.2 When you print an allowance category tab it only prints the objects within the tab.  It doesn’t print any allowances attached even if you display the attached allowances on screen before printing?
5.3 How can we make reports more printer friendly?

6. SWP Training

6.1 I think I need more training in SWP, who should I contact?
6.2 Where do I get the latest version of the Staff Workload Planner (SWP) User Guidance?

1. Accessing SWP & SWP Team / Logging in

1.1 How do new members of staff gain access to load data on the SWP system?

All new users who need to load data on the SWP system must complete an access request form, which can be downloaded from the Academic Workload Planning pages on the website.

The form must be authorised by the Dean/Deputy Dean or Director, and then sent to AcademicWorkloadPlanning@dmu.ac.uk

The new member of staff will also need to contact the ITMS Service Desk to request that they are added to the ‘SWP Reporting group in Active Directory’.

1.2 Can I log into SWP with a MAC computer?

The recommended way to access SWP is via a PC and using Internet Explorer. However, if you are a MAC user, the SWP system can be accessed via the Citrix business portal. This requires a technical solution to be applied to your MAC to allow access.

Please email itmsservicedesk@dmu.ac.uk directly if you require access to SWP via a MAC computer. They will schedule an appointment to apply the solution to your MAC.

Please then refer to the guidance for accessing SWP on an Apple Mac, available on the Academic Workload Planning pages on the website.

The Staff Workload Planner (SWP) User Guidance is available here

1.3 I want to use SWP at home, how can I access SWP when not at work?

You will not be able to access SWP from your home computer. However, you can log into SWP from home providing you have access to a DMU issued laptop.

You will need your line manager’s approval to have full VPN access. Once this is approved, email the ITMS service desk itmsservicedesk@dmu.ac.uk asking them to ‘enable VPN and install Pulse Secure on the laptop’.

1.4 Can I use any web browser to access SWP?

No. Only Internet Explorer.

1.5 When I log into SWP I can see several tabs such as ‘LEIC16SBD’ which should I use to attach allowances against or to view in ‘SWP Team’?

Please be sure to take care when you have logged into SWP that you select the correct tab, as information entered onto the wrong tab cannot copied into the correct tab.

All allowances for the 2017/18 academic year must be attached to the ‘LEIC17’ tab; however you can still look at previous year’s information on the other tabs.

1.6 What is SWP Team?

You will have noticed when you log into the Scientia portal that there is an option to select “SWP Team”. SWP Team is available to all academic staff and summarises their loading into a single read only view.

This will be useful for all academic staff, but especially those who don’t have access to main SWP, but would like to look at their own loading and/or that of their colleagues within their team. All academic staff will be able to log into the Scientia portal and access SWP Team.

Please note that every member of academic staff will also be able to see the loading of their departmental colleagues in SWP Team as well as their own.

1.7 Should I be able to view other colleagues’ workloads on SWP Team at this web browser address https://scientiaportal.dmu.ac.uk

Yes; it has always been the intention to enable people to view certain information about others’ workloads as the objectives in introducing the new system included achieving more openness and transparency. Furthermore, under the old paper based system there was nothing to prevent an individual from viewing other colleagues’ workload forms as these were held in paper files centrally within faculties and could be viewed if requested. SWP only makes available electronically what has previously been available in paper form. It is therefore more accessible and more up to date than the old paper system.

We would not expect any personal or sensitive information to be available.

1.8 What should I do if I’ve tried access SWP Team at this web browser address but I can’t access it?

Email itmsservicedesk@dmu.ac.uk to advise of the problem

1.9 Will we have access to a test area, so we can have a play?

There is a test area you can access. Please email the training team at itskills@dmu.ac.uk to request the access link and login details. Please be aware that the data in the test system is out of date for both staff and timetabling.

2. SWP Data

2.1 How often will the static data in SWP, such as staff be updated?

SAP and Syllabus+ data will be updated overnight on a daily basis.

2.2 How often will the static data in SWP, such as modules and timetabled activities be updated?

Timetabled elements of the system are updated as changes are advised to the Timetabling Office; these are refreshed in SWP at every log-in.

2.3 The FTE (Full Time Equivalent) for a member of staff is incorrect, how can this be corrected?

If the FTE for a member of staff is incorrect, please do not attempt to make any changes in the system, but advise your HR Business Partner.

If you have any questions about the accuracy of FTEs please contact your HR Business Partner.

2.4 What is the correct FTE value for a Part-time lecturer?

For the purposes of SWP, the FTE value for a part-time Lecturer should always be zero. If the FTE for a member of staff is incorrect, please do not attempt to make any changes in the system, but advise your Faculty HR Business Partner.

2.5 How do I ensure the FTE for a new starter is correct in SWP?

In SWP, when we have a new starter their FTE will always default to zero. So you should log into SWP and check that the member of staff is being pulled through.

If the FTE for a member of staff is incorrect, please do not attempt to make any changes in the system, but advise your HR Business Partner.

If you have any questions about the accuracy of FTEs please contact your HR Business Partner.

2.6 How does the SWP system account for mid-year new starters, to provide a proportion of the 550 hours maximum Formal Scheduled Teaching (FST) allocation?

There isn’t a solution within the SWP system to account for mid-year new starters to provide a proportion of the 550 hours maximum FST allocation.

Please address this through workload discussions between the member of staff and the manager. Prior to FSLRG Meetings Deputy Deans are provided with a list of current academic staff on single spine who have started after 1st September of the corresponding academic year, which excludes Hourly Paid Lecturers and Management Staff.

2.7 A member of staff isn’t appearing in SWP, what should I do?

SWP takes a feed of staff data from the Universities HR database, so if a member of staff exists there they should appear in SWP.

If you are sure they don’t exist in SWP you should advise your HR Business Partner who will investigate. It may be that the staff member’s record is assigned to a different department. Once raised, the HR Business Partner will be able to investigate and ensure the staff member appears where they should be in SWP.

2.8 I was expecting to see a module available under a particular department but it’s not there, what should I do?

Please contact the Time Tabling Office at TimetableOffice@dmu.ac.uk. There may be several reasons why a module doesn’t appear, including that the module has recently been moved to a new department and not updated in our timetabling system, or, that the teaching element doesn’t appear on our timetable, such as in the case of teaching delivered off campus. Once raised, the team will be able to investigate and ensure the module appears where it should in SWP.

2.9 I have a member of staff who is teaching a portion of a longer teaching activity, how do I correctly record the teaching they will deliver?

Please do not attempt to make any changes in the system. Please contact the Time Tabling Office at TimetableOffice@dmu.ac.uk.

2.10 Does the SWP system have Staff Absence Allowances?

The SWP system is not set up for the purposes of managing absence. It looks at key workload allocations. If an Academic is off work because of sickness absence, this does not affect the workload that has been agreed between them and their manager; it may mean that work is not being done because of absence but that is a different matter.

If the sickness is long term it is likely to result in adjustments in year as other colleagues pick up some of the workload not being done by the absent employee, but sickness absence is not an ‘allowance’ of time within the system or within the guidance.

An absent employee who returns to work on a phased basis may have an adjustment to their workload as part of a phased return to work or as a reasonable adjustment for a disability.

2.11 When do we need to start adding data for the next academic year?

The database rollover for the next academic year will take place in Spring of the previous academic year. Although the ‘tab’ stating the year may be visible, staff Loaders will be advised by their Deputy Dean when to start inputting data, once the new database has been tested.

2.12 How are Off-Campus Teaching allowances loaded on SWP?

Any teaching that is delivered off campus does not need to be entered on the Syllabus Plus timetable database in order to be recorded against a member of staff’s load. Instead, there are specific allowances set up to record the total number of teaching hours involved. The detail of how the teaching is delivered (Lectures, Seminars etc.) isn’t needed for SWP purposes. Either use ‘Off Campus Teaching Weeks Specified’ where the delivery weeks are known or ‘Off Campus Teaching Weeks Not Specified’ where they’re not defined.

2.13 How are multi-staffed activity allowances proportioned in SWP?

Please be aware that when multiple members of staff are assigned to a single teaching activity, each staff member will receive the full teaching allowance for that activity. The allowance is not allocated proportionally.

3. Attaching Allowances

3.1 If I add an allowance to a module and then allocate a member of staff to it, will I then see that allowance attached to the member of staff when I look in the personal tab?

No – it will however be added to their staff summary information table which can be seen in all tabs. You can also print a Detailed Staff Summary Report which will show any allowances that a member of staff has been allocated.

3.2 When you attach an allowance and then duplicate it for all objects, can you edit the allowance and copy these changes to all the objects?

No, if you amend an existing allowance which has been attached to multiple objects and then duplicate it across all the objects it creates another allowance for all the objects. It will not overwrite the existing allowances with the amendments. If you need to amend an allowance attached to multiple objects you must either edit each individual allowance or delete and attach the allowances again.

4. SWP Functionality

4.1 Is there an auto save function?

No – any changes made should be saved manually, by clicking on the ‘save’ icon at the top left of the screen or these will be lost when you log out.

4.2 Can you undo any changes you make within SWP?

No – once saved you cannot undo a change. Instead you would need to overwrite the change manually and save.

4.3 The Staff Allocation panel has disappeared from the Teaching, Learning and Assessment tab and I am unable to allocate staff to allowances attached to modules?

You may have closed this panel, whilst working within SWP. To display the panel again, select the Tools menu and then Reset and Reset Layout.

4.4 How can I hide or unhide columns in SWP?

If you need to hide or unhide a column in SWP, please see the instructions in the Staff Workload Planner (SWP) User Guidance which is available here. If you require more detailed SWP system training, please email the training team at itskills@dmu.ac.uk to determine when the next scheduled SWP training sessions will be.

4.5 I don’t understand some of the column names displayed in the column chooser dialogue box?

The column names are pulled from the timetabling system Syllabus+ and it is not something we can change. We suggest you display the columns to see any data attached which may help you understand what the columns represent. Please see Explanation of Column Headings in the Staff Workload Planner (SWP) User Guidance which is available here.

4.6 Can two (or more) members of staff make changes to same department at the same time?

Is there any single user lock?The system does allow more than one member of staff to work on the same department at the same time and attach or delete allowances to lecturers within that department. As soon as amendments are made then these amendments are available for all users to see by refreshing the data. There is no locking of departments or lecturers within SWP.

4.7 Can you use a wildcard search for a single character ‘?’

The only wildcard character that you can use is an * and this will only work if you want to find something that contains a string of characters i.e. *son will find everything containing the letters “son”.

4.8Is there a zoom function on SWP?

There isn’t a zoom function on the SWP.

5. Printing in SWP

5.1 Is batch printing available?

Printing an individual staff summary for lots of members of staff is too time consuming.The three main ‘FSLRG Reports’ are listed at the top of the list of reports. Please see the instructions in the Staff Workload Planner (SWP) User Guidance which is available here.

5.2 When you print an allowance category tab it only prints the objects within the tab. It doesn’t print any allowances attached even if you display the attached allowances on screen before printing?

You can customise the behaviour of the print preview to enable the allowances to be displayed and therefore printed. Within the print preview screen select the Customize button on the toolbar. In the Print Options dialogue ensure you have the Main View tab selected and the Options tab displayed. Tick the Details checkbox and click Apply. The attached allowances will now be displayed.

5.3 How can we make reports more printer friendly?

You select print options within the print preview to allow printing on A3 paper and landscape orientation. You can also export the report into Excel, where you manage printing more effectively. Please refer to the Staff Workload Planner (SWP) User Guidance available here: http://www.dmu.ac.uk/dmu-staff/people-and-organisational-development/academic-workload-planning/academic-workload-planning.aspx

6. SWP Training

6.1 I think I need more training in SWP, who should I contact?

If you feel you would benefit from more training, please contact the IT trainers at itskills@dmu.ac.uk. Please note that there are several training materials available to you already including the Staff Workload Planner (SWP) User Guidance, the ‘Guidance on Academic Workloads’ document and e-learning packages available through blackboard available here.

6.2 Where do I get the latest version of the Staff Workload Planner (SWP) User Guidance?

Please request the latest version from our IT Trainers at itskills@dmu.ac.uk.

The Guidance is also available online through a dedicated Academic Workload Planning page on the DMU Staff Pages. Which can be found here.

 
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