University of Michigan’s Medical Center Information Technology, or also known as MCIT, services the entire health system's IT needs. MCIT consulted our group with improving their on-boarding process for their 27,000 employees consisting of faculty, staff and students.


Client Website

Date: Sept-Dec 2013

Course: SI 501 Contextual Inquiry

Collaborators : Sylvie Zhang, Gedi Teng, Alejandro Guerrero, Erik Saran


A diagram of the simultaneously processes during a candidate's hire which was made using Gliffy.

  • Identified inefficiencies with the current on-boarding process as well as mistakes in the current workflow diagrams.
  • Clarified and divided the responsibilities between hiring managers and HR under the new Service Level Agreement (SLA).
  • Delivered a Client Report 
  • Conducted 6 contextual interviews 


We conducted 6 contextual inquiry interviews in order to observe and gather meaningful data on-site. Each interview was recorded and disseminated in interpretation sessions by our group.

An affinity diagram (affinity wall) was created in order to organize and summarize the data we had gathered from the interpretation sessions. By disconnecting the notes from the users, we were able to pinpoint areas of inefficiency and confusion in the on-boarding process.


After our interviews, our group consolidated the information and looked for any inconsistencies. We identified a redundancy in the flow pertaining to manually adding the employee to StaffList, an internal HR system. Even within the company documentation, we found that HR and hiring managers owned this responsibility. This was creating confusion within the already chaotic division of responsibilities - which was caused when MCIT's HR team being absorbed into a university-wide shared services team. Under the new Service Level Agreement (SLA), we found that HR was no longer responsible for this function.

We also found that there are software currently being used at MCIT with redundant functions - with PeopleSoft and StaffList being two examples. Since the new and consolidated HR division uses one and MCIT uses the other, it creates confusion and sometimes duplication of efforts.