DARS Newsletter May 2016

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Dear Users,

Welcome to this month’s DARS Newsletter. Older newsletters can be found at https://www.darscentral.ox.ac.uk/newsletters, with newsletters since May 2015 held at http://darswiki.bsp.ox.ac.uk/index.php/DARS_Newsletters. And remember that you can contact the DARS helpdesk via dars@admin.ox.ac.uk.

In this issue:

New Starter – Gabriel Refatti, DARS Training and Communications Officer
New chair of the DARS Communications SIG
Upgrade to BBIS registration pages
New DARSWiki articles
HEAT – follow up – please don’t use impersonal email addresses
Use suppressions
Transfer designations – for Gift Registry Use only
What to do in the event of a Data Protection breach
DARS Priority issues list

DARS news and features

New Starter – Gabriel Refatti, DARS Training and Communications Officer

We are delighted to announce that Gabriel Refatti will be joining the DARS Process and Training Team in June. Some of you may recognise Gabriel from his previous roles in IT Services; with an academic background in linguistics and experience in customer services, we’re looking forward to Gabriel joining the team where he will be delivering training and providing communications support.

New chair of the DARS Communications SIG

Elliot Falvert-Martin will be chairing the DARS Communications SIG from the 1st June. Over the coming months the SIGs will be working more closely with the DARS Support Centre and Project Teams as we seek to make a number of enhancements to DARS and its underpinning processes. With various changes to Data Protection, PECR and fundraising best practice (Etherington, TPS, FPS, etc) the Communications SIG will play a key role in sharing information, guidance and best practice so we welcome and thank Elliot for his involvement.

Upgrade to BBIS registration pages

We're making some improvements to BBIS registration forms in order to meet legal requirements. In last month’s newsletter, we mentioned that we had changed the Alumni Office website, so that alumni who register have to enter their alumni number twice, in order to reduce the number of mismatched registrations. We are rolling out this change to all other BBIS registration pages.

At the same time, we will be upgrading the form to meet W3C accessibility requirements. This is an internet standard for website accessibility, and information about it can be found at https://www.w3.org/WAI/intro/accessibility.php

The changes will be made during the next 4-8 weeks. Webmasters please note: when the work is complete you'll notice three new parts on the registration page:

  • LookupID confirmation jQuery
  • LookupID confirmation CSS
  • Accessibility registration form jQuery

New DARSWiki articles

Title: Updating DARS with the Queen’s New Year’s and Birthday Honours Lists


Description: An overview of the process for recording and congratulating recipients of The Queen’s New Year’s and Birthday Honours Lists on DARS

Title: Including and Excluding Recipients of Email Communications

Link:[https://darswiki.bsp.ox.ac.uk/index.php?title=Including_and_Excluding_Recipients_of_Email_Communications&redirect=no https://darswiki.bsp.ox.ac.uk/index.php? title=Including_and_Excluding_Recipients_of_Email_Communications&redirect=no]

Description: An article providing further detail on building mailing lists in DARS. See also Guidance for storing alumni data and communicating with alumni and What Suppressions Should I Use and When?


HEAT – follow up – please don’t use impersonal email addresses

Last month, we made a number of requests, to help us respond to HEAT incidents as efficiently as possible. Thank you for your support of this. However, we are still receiving some requests from impersonal email addresses (ones which contain a job title, rather than your name – e.g. development.assistant@college.ox.ac.uk rather than mary.robinson@college.ox.ac.uk). Please use the personal email address when communicating with the helpdesk – the impersonal ones are not recorded in HEAT, so we can’t use them to classify your request.

Use suppressions

We would like to take this opportunity to remind you that when preparing queries in support of communications, all relevant suppressions MUST be applied. There are no exceptions. Failure to adhere to this rule can result in complaints from those who have expressed their wish not to receive communications: these complaints are sometimes sent to a part of the University, which is bad enough; sometimes the complainants voice their concerns directly to the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO), risking fines and significant reputational damage to the University as a whole.

Transfer designations – for Gift Registry Use only

Please remember that colleges should not use, or change the designation of any donation that begins with ‘1-Transfer’.  This is because these are for ‘transfer’ gifts, which are by definition processed by Gift Registry (or the North American Office). Colleges should use or change designations that begin ‘1-College’.

The consequences of college staff adding or amending gifts with a 1-Transer/ designation can vary but may include:

  • If the designation is changed before the revenue has been transferred to the college, the transfer will not happen.
  • If the designation is changed before Gift Registry have claimed any potential Gift Aid, Gift Aid will not be claimed by the Gift Registry.
  • If Gift Registry have already claimed Gift Aid, this will have been transferred to the college.  Changing the designation will trigger a Gift Aid refund that will be submitted to HMRC unless this refund is not submitted.  If the refund is submitted, then the value of the refund would have to be refunded by the college.  Furthermore, because Gift Aid has been “refunded” but the donation is still eligible for Gift Aid, another Gift Aid claim could be made by the College, thus potentially duplicating the submission for a different charitable entity.
  • Regardless of all the above, changing the designation will affect the university’s accounts reconciliation and the audit trail will be broken.

What to do in the event of a Data Protection breach

In the event that a DP breach occurs, or you have reason to believe that it has occurred or could occur, please follow the guidance in the DARSWiki which can be found at https://darswiki.bsp.ox.ac.uk/index.php?title=Process_for_Raising_Possible_Data_Protection_Breaches.

DARS Priority issues list

Following a suggestion from the DARS System Management Committee (SMC), a list of DARS priority issues can be found at www.darscentral.ox.ac.uk/priorityissues. SMC have asked that you check this list before raising an item with the helpdesk, since it may already have been raised. It may, of course, still be useful to report an already known/priority issue, especially those marked ‘Ongoing Investigation’, as you may have info that helps to throw light on the nub of the issue.

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