Each quarter, the PPI Project Team will develop a quarterly summary that captures highlights of work done to date.
Pilot Program Continued
Servus activities continued with other candidates being determined
Since Servus’ commitment to piloting their wire transfers using the Payments as a Service (PaaS) platform, the team has been completing activities required to meet the September pilot delivery date. Key accomplishments over this past quarter include the completion of baseline transition project plans, user experience interface, settlement overviews and workshops, pilot scoping, gap assessments, and change requirements. This process has been a positive and informative one as it has brought to light some excellent questions and answers that will support the transitions for all credit unions.
Other pilot credit unions and payment type candidates are still being determined. Business readiness surveys are an important tool in determining readiness because they identify the unique needs of credit unions and required next steps and engagement. Another pilot credit union should be identified within the next month. This will be communicated.
Point of Contact Networks Formed
Building of key resources for credit union onboarding
Over the past quarter, the Credit Union Onboarding team has been engaging credit unions, not part of the pilot program, to ensure readiness to transition to PaaS. Key workshops completed include business readiness, technical Readiness, and experience transformation workshops.
A newly created Point of Contact (PoC) network will be a key resource group for these credit unions. With the objective to offer consistent, transparent and regular touchpoints with the credit unions through one point of contact, this network will facilitate timely decision making, reduce complexity, and enable on-time deliverables. The individuals appointed as their credit union’s point of contact will be a valuable resource, as they will be the key source of information for their credit union, throughout the transition to PaaS. POC Network meetings will be kicking-off soon and will occur monthly regularly to keep credit unions informed.
Aligned project plans to maximize value for credit unions
With two big projects underway for the system – Celero’s digital banking platform (Xpress) and the PPI – running in parallel, Celero, together with CUPS and CUCM (under the Prairie Payments Joint Venture (PPJV) operating framework), have been working together in the past quarter to proactively identify interactions between these projects.
An integrated plan is being developed to deliver all payment types on time (or earlier) and aligns dependencies to ensure minimal risk to credit unions and conflict between the projects. This coordinated approach to the delivery of major system initiatives, will streamline these projects and attract additional volumes from financial institutions beyond the prairie credit unions, ultimately maximizing the value of PaaS, and creating more options for credit unions to integrate to the platform.
Kept on track to achieve deliverables
Despite the hurdles brought on by COVID-19, the past quarter was about meeting Milestone 2, the Onboarding Plan, at the end of May. Completed on time, this plan is a cohesive program that outlines the activities to be performed by IBM, the project team, and the credit unions to onboard onto the PaaS platform. The activities include developing various technical plans, the production readiness and pilot test plan, as well as success criteria for onboarding. This will inform Milestone 3, Platform Readiness, which is currently on track for delivery at the end of July.
The production test environment is integral to the delivery of Milestone 3, as it will allow credit unions to connect and conduct end-to-end functional testing. It focuses on verifying that the activities needed to connect to all required parties have been completed and are working as anticipated. Specific activities include network integration and routing, site failover switching detection and routing, operational dry run to test the operational procedures, and fall-back procedures.