Wednesday, June 4, 2008

SADA Systems and The Los Angeles Community College District

SADA Systems, Inc. is a privately held information technology consulting, outsourcing, and development firm founded in 2000. SADA works with its client base to develop innovative technology solutions to business challenges.

The Los Angeles Community College District (LACCD or Client) is the administrative and governing body of several community colleges in the greater Los Angeles Metro area. LACCD has been serving students in the in the Los Angeles area for nearly 80 years.

The Los Angeles Community College District needed a seamless and integrated way to provision accounts for some 2 million students, former students, and alumni. Over its network of colleges the Los Angeles Community College District gets up to between 20 and 30 thousand registrations each day, during peak registration months. Account provisioning needed to be automated for incoming students, while allowing existing students, former students, and alumni the ability to "opt-in" to Google Apps email accounts.

SADA used the Google API to develop a batch update and sync solution that is capable of provisioning multiple accounts per second. As a proof-of-concept the Client and SADA deployed the Google Apps solution to Los Angeles Trade-Technical college. SADA assisted the Los Angeles Community College District with every aspect of the deployment of Google Apps to Los Angeles Trade Tech. The batch provisioning tool, developed by SADA was implemented and allows the client to handle the problem of provisioning a large number of accounts (sometimes tens of thousands) in less than an hour. Additionally, SADA built a custom opt-in mechanism whereby students could select their own passwords and email aliases as part of the process.

Los Angeles Trade Tech was able to provision accounts for approximately 35,000 currently enrolled students. Accounts for incoming students are now created automatically. Administrators are able to create accounts through a nightly update by uploading a single .CSV file. The Google API syncs with the LACCD Student Identity System to prevent the possibility of duplicate accounts. Former students and alumni have the option of creating an account if they choose.

"SADA Systems, Inc. is very controlled in their approach and methodology. They translated our requirements into a technical action plan very quickly and delivered what they said they would when they said they would. In my view SADA has a much better methodology and control of engagement than even large, national consulting firms," says Tony Tortorice, CIO of the Los Angeles Unified School District.