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 MIP Studies Post-Launch Tools, Information, and Procedures (TIPs)

Note: Some of this information may change throughout the transition process. Check back regularly for updates. Last Updated: August 17, 2017


Objective

This release redesigned the MIP Studies rigid workflow and provides a flexible solution for users to track Study activities. The Amendments and Revisions workflows are not affected.


Timeline

The Mapping Information Platform (MIP) Studies Redesign was released on June 5, 2017.


Known Post Launch Issues

On Monday, June 5th we officially transitioned to a redesigned MIP Studies format and migrated existing Studies data into the new structure. As we’re getting accustomed to the new design and we’re working through a few outstanding issues that we want to make you aware of:

  • Risk MAP Customer and Data Services (CDS) continues to work on implementing a fix to restore proper functionality to the Manage AND Direct Upload Button. However, please remember NOT to upload a zip file containing a file(s) 2GB or larger through the Manage Upload/Direct Button, as the entire upload will fail without notice. While CDS is working to implement a fix, single files 2GB or larger must be paired down to a size before the zip file is created for upload. In addition, if you have already uploaded a zip file containing a singular file that is larger than 2GB or larger please confirm, via File Explore, that your data file was correctly processed and uploaded.

CDS is moving quickly to fix existing errors and inconsistencies. Please reach out to MIP Help at miphelp@riskmapcds.com if you are experiencing additional problems.


MIP Tools, Information and Procedures (TIPs)MIP TIPs Picture

Now that you have had a chance to explore and use the redesigned MIP Studies, CDS is please to provide a few MIP TIPs. Hopefully these TIPs will help you become more familiar with the studies redesign.

  • When can I select the "Send to the MSC" button within the Distribute Preliminary Products Task?
    1. Users will not be able to select the "Send to the MSC" button within the Distribute Preliminary Products Task until the Produce Preliminary Products Data Capture Task is Submitted and KDP 3 is Complete.
  • Will the MIP Studies Tracker Map be updated to reflect MIP system enhancements?
    1. Yes! For example, within the Studies Tracker Map, users will be able to view Projected or Actual Preliminary Date, Projected or Actual LFD date, and Projected or Actual Effective Date. Additionally, Purchases deleted from MIP will no longer appear in the Studies Tracker Map. Updates will still occur on a weekly basis. Access the Studies Tracker Map by clicking here.
  • Has the process for migrating data from the J Drive to the K Drive changed?
    1. No! When a Task is Complete, it will move from the J Drive to the K Drive, just as it has in the past. However, with the addition of a "Submitted" status, Tasks are not moved to Complete status until the Percent Complete field is set to 100% and all relevant Validation/QAQC Tasks are submitted.
  • There are multiple Geographies associated with a Purchase, but I only see one Geography in File Explorer. Does this mean that the other Geographies were deleted?
    1. No! While a Purchase may include multiple Geographies, only one Geography will appear in File Explorer.
  • Why are there numbers within the Purchase/Task Name fields?
    1. Once a Purchase/Task is created, the system will automatically place a number within the Purchase/Task Title. These numbers are sequentially based on the order in which the Tasks are created
  • What does the “last updated” date mean on the Task Status portion of the Dashboard
    1. The “last updated” date refers to when the Task was last worked on
    2. For example: If the status is “new”, the last updated date refers to when it was created, if the status is “in-progress”, the last updated date refers to when it was last saved, if the status is “complete”, the last updated date refers to when it was submitted
  • What is the best way to quickly get to a Task history or find a Task that is associated with a Purchase?
    1. The Studies Workbenches, Dashboard, and Reporting are all options when looking for Task history. While the Workbenches and Studies Dashboard are tools, creating an Ad Hoc Studies Report will be the best option. When running a Studies Report via MARS, you can set your own search criteria and choose the data elements that you are interested in
    2. For example: You can create a report to show the certain data elements: Projects, Purchases, Task Name and Status. You can also add Task’s Comment History that can help clarify the Task history, especially with validation rejections
  • ·Wonder how the data validation process works within the new solution?
    1. After uploading the file, a user should select the Run Validation button, which will then trigger metadata validation. If the metadata validation passes, DVT is automatically started right after metadata validation for FIRM Database capture tasks. For the results any validation, select the View Details link which will provide more information on the results of the auto validation. If the metadata validation status displays Failed, the View Details link provides specific information on what part of the metadata failed the review
  • How do Tasks assignments work?
    1. One major change to the Task assignment workflow with this release is that Tasks are assigned, not claimed. When a Task is first created, it is initially assigned by Region/RPMLs. Once you have been assigned a Task, you can assign it to another MIP User(s). That’s right Tasks can also be assigned to more than one user!
    2. All Tasks which you have been assigned will be seen on the Task Workbench, which is launched when you select the Study Task Tab. From the Task Workbench, you can either assign the Task to another user(s) and/or complete the Task
    3. Task email notifications are sent to each assigned user upon assignment. When Tasks are submitted, email notifications are sent to everyone who is assigned to that Task (Project owners are automatically assigned to all Tasks with that Project)
    4. Need to remove an assigned user?
      1. A MIP Help Ticket must be submitted to remove an assigned user
  • Task Assignments and Considerations
    1. When assigning Tasks, please remember the following:
      • Before using any of the filters allow the User Table to populate
      • Its best to search for a user by his or her name. Only Task +EV users needing access to two organizations will have multiple user accounts. Therefore, user account details may have changed without your knowledge and thus you could be filtering by an outdated understanding of the user you are looking for
      • You can assign multiple users at the same time on the same screen
  • ·Wonder how the data validation process works within the new solution?
    1. After uploading the file, a user should select the Run Validation button, which will then trigger metadata validation. If the metadata validation passes, DVT is automatically started right after metadata validation for FIRM Database capture tasks. For the results any validation, select the View Details link which will provide more information on the results of the auto validation. If the metadata validation status displays Failed, the View Details link provides specific information on what part of the metadata failed the review
  • Updating Percent Complete and Dates
    1. Task level users cannot edit Task progress or dates. If any updates to these fields need to be made, they should be coordinated with the RPML
  • What is the Studies Tracker Map?
    1. With the MIP Study 5.0 release, CDS also published a brand new GeoPlatform tool called the Studies Tracker Map. This tool displays MIP purchases and their geography which are identified by color based on purchase type. Purchases are also differentiated by status e.g. active, completed, on-hold, or closed. This map is updated weekly and is a great tool providing a quick cartographic view of purchases by geography
    2. The map is publicly available on the GeoPlatform and can be accessed from the MIP via the Tools and Links Tab. The Studies Tracker Map can also be launched by clicking: Studies Tracker Map
  • Need to update a data file once a Task has been submitted?
    1. If a Task has already been submitted but a data file needs to be updated, there is no need to contact MIP Help. Rather, please contact the appropriate RPML and indicate the need to update a data file to an already completed Task. Project Level Access users can re-open Purchases and Tasks as needed, including Data Capture Tasks. CDS highly recommends that users coordinate all data edits and additions with their RPML
  • What happens when a Task is Saved, Completed, or Deleted?
    1. Saving a Task can be done at any point. This action allows a user to return to that Task to see the previously saved information. Re-saving a Task overwrites any updated data fields
    2. Completing a Task can be done once all the mandatory fields are completed and a user selects the Submit button on the Task screen. Submitted Tasks are considered to be completed. When Tasks are completed, email notifications are sent to everyone who was assigned to that Task. In addition, once a Task is submitted, that Task is removed from the Task Workbench across all users who were assigned to the Task and the file repository will be locked
      • Note: Users will not be able to upload any files through File Explorer, if this action is taken
    3. Deleting a Task removes the Task altogether. This action eliminates that Task from the Project and all Workbenches. Deleting a Task also removes any record of that Task to include within Studies Reporting
      • Note: Deleting a Task does not remove an uploaded file or that file folder within File Explorer
  • Need to reopen a Task?
    1. If a Task has already been submitted, but you need make a change, there is no need to contact MIP Help. Instead contact the Project Owner and indicate the need to update the already completed Task. Project Level Access users can reopen Purchases and Tasks as needed, including Data Capture Tasks. CDS highly recommends that you coordinate all data edits and additions with your RPML
  • When is a File Folder in File Explorer created?
    1. A file folder is created once a user engages the Direct Upload or the Manage Upload button within a Task (even if that Task has not been Saved or Submitted). To see what files have already been uploaded to a Task, select the View in File Explorer link within the Task. Deleting a Task does not remove an uploaded file or that file folder within File Explorer
  • What is the difference between Task Validation and Metadata?
    1. All Project data uploaded to the MIP through a Project Workflow needs to be reviewed and validated for completeness against the current Data Capture standards by a MIP super-user, typically a MIP Black Belt. This is validation is completed through various Validation or Quality Review Tasks created within a Project. Where the metadata validation is the means to validate of the data files which are uploaded via a Task or File Explorer. Metadata validation is a system driven process that ensures that the quality of data files being uploaded to the MIP are meeting FEMA standards
  • Project, Purchase, Task Statuses
    1. Status appears across all levels of the MIP Studies application. Statuses are also displayed across different tools, such as the Study Task Workbench, Studies Dashboard,Studies Reporting and the Study Tracker Map. Statuses are given to each Project, Purchase, and Task. Each level has a different status:
      • Project Statuses include: Active, On Hold, Complete, and Closed
      • Purchase Statuses include: Active, On Hold, and Complete
      • Task Statuses include: New, In-Progress, On Hold, and Complete
    2. The only Status that is changed automatically by the system is the Task Status. When a Task is created, it is automatically marked as “New”. If a user saves a Task it is automatically changed to “In Progress”. If a user submits the Task, it is marked as “Complete” by the system automatically. If a QC/Validation/QR/Approval task is rejected then the Data Capture Task is reopened automatically by the system and the status is marked as “In Progress”
    3. The Purchase Status and the Project Status are updated manually by Project Access Level users
    4. Updating/changing a Project, Purchase, or Task status does not automatically change an associated Project, Purchase, or Task Status
  • KDP Tasks
    1. Key Decision Points (KDPs) were added to the systems functionality in the form of Tasks. While the official KDP process remains the same as before the new functionality in the redesigned MIP Studies will allow for KDPs to be captured within the Studies workflow
    2. As part of the migration to the new solution, KDP Tasks were created within Projects, but not populated with data. Thus, KDP fields remain unpopulated across other Tasks where that data is displayed
      • Should you see a blank KDP field on a Task please inform your Project Owner as they will have to populate the KDP Task
  • Modifying Canned Reports
    1. It is recommended that users do NOT modify any Canned Reports, as doing so could break the report
    2. Should you need to make changes or modification to these Canned Reports, please contact MIP Help who will then works with the FEMA System Owner and the MIP Studies Reporting Working Group for approval and prioritization
  • Task Order Numbers
    1. Task Order Numbers are now a fundamental part of the process where Earned Value (EV) information is captured and a required field. Task Order Numbers are populated by a Project Access Owner when Tasks are created. In some situations 'placeholder' task order numbers were created in order to migrate some projects. Project Owners were notified about the place holders prior to the launch date
      • If you have questions about Task Orders which are assigned to Tasks please contact your Project Owner
  • Re-Opening Closed Cases
    1. If a study was closed prior to the study freeze, May 2017, the associated case files were not migrated to the NEW file structure. Should that closed case need to be reopened a Project Access Level user can update the status on their own
      • Do not reopen cases simply to replace files. File replacement should be done through MIP Help so the case can remain closed and the files remain with the other closed cases
      • If a case must be reopened please submit a MIP Help Ticket indicating that the associated case files need to be migrated to the new file structure
  • Editing and Removing Geographies
    1. When making a request to MIP Help requesting geography/geographies be edited or removed, users should send only the list of geographies to be edited or removed. The list of geographies that need to remain within the Purchase should not be included. If there are no Tasks included in a Purchase with geography to be edited or removed, CDS recommends that users simply delete the Purchase, rather than contacting MIP Help
  • Available Users
    1. The list of available users that can be assigned to a Purchase or Task is pulled from one of the three study access groups: Studies Project Access Group, Studies Task Access Group, Studies Task EV Access Group
    2. The list of available users that can be selected in the MARS Ad hoc filter element "Task Assigned To" is based on the user ID having a Purchase or Task assigned to the ID
      • It is possible for a deactivated ID to appear in the MARS filter list because it has an assigned Purchase or Task from previous project work
      • Therefore, the displayed Names/IDs between MIP assignment (only active/valid IDs) and MARS may appear out of sync; but this is logical
      • For example: Project X/Purchase X has been on-going since 2016 and had Person A and Person B working a Data Development Task #1. Between the completion of Data Development Task #1 and the start of Data Development Task #2, Person A left the program, is no longer associated with the Project, and their MIP user account deactivated responsibly by the Project Manager and MIP Help. When selecting users to assign Data Development Task #2, Person A will no longer be available. However, when running a MARS report for Project X it will still list Person A as a task owner for the project because that User ID still remains within the database for Task #1 even though it is now deactivated

Guidance

MIP User Care has been redesigned and all MIP Studies guidance has been rewritten to provide detailed system instructions. The MIP Guidance and Standards documents on fema.gov are also being updated to cover changes in business rules and any changing processes. The new MIP User Care is available now in the MIP User Care tab, and the revised Guidance and Standards Document(s) will be published with the Spring Guidance Refresh in May 2017.


Stay Connected

MIP users can look for updates and information in regular email updates as well as in the monthly RMD News Flash. Users can also participate in monthly webinars that introduce new concepts, preview functionality and resources, and collect input for necessary Guidance and Training. For more information, or if you have any questions, please contact CDS at outreach@riskmapcds.com