PRISMS Helpdesk Procedures

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					PRISMS HELPDESK PROCEDURES




        VERSION 0.2
Version   Date      Author      Reason

0.1       9/2008    O. Dive     Original document

0.2       28/4/10   L. Hedley   Updated information on online registration processes, missing messages and
                                procedure for incorrectly issued/ reported on CoEs

—         —         —           Added info on changing DIAC

0.2       9/9/10    L Hedley    Added info on setting up Standard Responses in Outlook.
Contents
Section 1       General Overview ........................................................................ 1
     1.1 The PRISMS Helpdesk ............................................................................ 1
          1.1.1 Contact Details .............................................................................. 1
          1.1.2 Opening Hours ............................................................................... 1
     1.2 The PRISMS phone................................................................................. 2
          1.2.1 Logging in ..................................................................................... 2
          1.2.2 Phone mailbox configuration ............................................................ 2
          1.2.3 The Voicemail recorded message, and how to change it ...................... 2
     1.3 The PRISMS Mailbox .............................................................................. 2
          1.3.1 Access to the PRISMS Mailbox ......................................................... 2
          1.3.2 Inbox procedures ........................................................................... 3
          1.3.3 Standard Responses in Outlook ........................................................ 4
          1.3.4 Printing faxes ................................................................................ 5
     1.4 Other useful Contacts and References ...................................................... 5

Section 2       Helpdesk Duties .......................................................................... 6
     2.1 Checking messages from DIAC – Nightly Tally ........................................... 6
          2.1.1 Procedure for checking today’s Message counts ................................. 6
          2.1.2 Procedure for checking the previous Message counts .......................... 7
          2.1.3 Find the Missing Message ................................................................ 7
     2.2 Checking messages from DIAC – ESOS/Non-ESOS errors ........................... 7
     2.3 Processing Registration Forms ................................................................. 7
          2.3.1 CoE Officer forms (COE-04a and COE-04i)......................................... 8
          2.3.2 Government Officer forms (GO-04) .................................................. 8
          2.3.3 Agent User forms (AG-04a and AG04i).............................................. 9
          2.3.4 IDP User forms (IDPU-04) ............................................................... 9
     2.4 PEO Signature Sample Forms .................................................................. 9
     2.5 Geocoding ............................................................................................ 9
     2.6 System Messages and News Items ..........................................................10
     2.7 Change Requests (CRs) .........................................................................10
     2.8 Other bits and pieces ............................................................................10
          2.8.1 Breach of PRISMS Conditions of Use ................................................10
          2.8.2 Notification of absent staff..............................................................10

Section 3       Common Helpdesk Queries and how to answer them ................ 11
     3.1 Queries from Providers ..........................................................................11
          3.1.1 Which variation do I use? ...............................................................11
          3.1.2 Changing Student or CoE details (including dates on CoE/Welfare
                arrangements) ..............................................................................11
          3.1.3 Changing User/Organisation details .................................................12
          3.1.4 PRISMS Access .............................................................................12
          3.1.5 Problems logging in .......................................................................13
          3.1.6 PRISMS is asking me for a release letter, but I don’t think I need one .13
          3.1.7 This CoE is being rejected as ‘Invalid’ ..............................................14
          3.1.8 This CoE is the wrong status ...........................................................14
          3.1.9 I made an error when completing a SCV. What do I do? ....................16
          3.1.10 I can’t seem to generate a CoE/Welfare letter/Report/new password
                   16
          3.1.11 I can’t find <country> on the list of Offshore Immigration offices ...16
     3.2 Queries from DIAC ................................................................................17
     3.3 Queries from CRICOS Administrators ......................................................17
     3.4 Queries from Students ..........................................................................17
3.4.1 I want to come to Australia to study. What do I do?/How do I get a
      scholarship? .................................................................................17
3.4.2 I’m having a problem with my school (they owe me money/haven’t done
      something they promised etc). Can you help? ...................................17
PRISMS Helpdesk Procedures


Notes to anyone who will edit this document

There are one or two conventions that I have followed when creating this document. It
would be appreciated if anyone who edits this document also follows those conventions
as it will make for a consistent document.

1.    Automatic numbering and Heading styles have been utilised. If you are going to add
      a section, make the heading the appropriate style (using the menu at the top of the
      screen, just next to the font selection box). This will renumber the following sections
      automatically.

2.    CoE status words have been given their own style. This is to visually separate the
      grammatically distinct meanings of (for example) Approved (CoE status) and
      approved (having authorised the CoE).


Section 1                    General Overview
PRISMS is the software and secure database developed jointly by the Department of
Education, Employment and Workplace Relations (DEEWR) and the Department of
Immigration and Citizenship (DIAC) for the purpose of administering the Education
Services for Overseas Students Act 2000 (The ESOS Act).

In order to assist PRISMS users who are unsure of how to use the software, a Helpdesk
has been established. It is not the role of the Helpdesk to advise users what they need to
do, only how to use PRISMS to do it. However, limited advice may be given when it’s
bleeding obvious what needs to happen.

1.1            The PRISMS Helpdesk
1.1.1          Contact Details

There are three ways that a PRISMS user can contact the Helpdesk

1.    Telephone: (02) 6240 7647

2.    Facsimile: (02) 6123 7558

3.    Email: prisms@deewr.gov.au

These details are also found in the ‘Contact Us’ section of the PRISMS website.

1.1.2          Opening Hours

The PRISMS Helpdesk is nominally open from 9:00am to 5:00pm Monday to Friday,
excluding Public Holidays.




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PRISMS Helpdesk Procedures

1.2           The PRISMS phone
1.2.1         Logging in

To have the PRISMS phone number ring at your telephone, dial *90, wait for the dial
tone and then dial the PRISMS extension, 47647. You should hear two beeps to confirm
that you are logged in.

To log out, dial #90. You should hear two beeps to confirm you have logged out.

1.2.2         Phone mailbox configuration

If there are no officers logged into the PRISMS phone, all callers will be diverted straight
to Voicemail, and any message left by the caller will be placed in the PRISMS Inbox.

When there is someone logged in, a call has approximately 10 seconds to be answered. If
the call is not answered within the 10 seconds, the call will be diverted to Voicemail, and
any message left by the caller will be placed in the PRISMS Inbox. If all phones are busy,
the next two callers will be presented with the following message: “All our operators are
busy at the moment. You have been place in a queue. Please standby until you are
answered.” This is followed by music. These calls will stay on the line until answered by
an operator. If there are already two calls in the queue, any further calls will be diverted
to Voicemail, and any message left by the caller will be placed in the PRISMS Inbox.

1.2.3         The Voicemail recorded message, and how to change it

The current hotline recorded message is:

Hi, you have called the PRISMS Help Team. We are unable to take your call right now so
please leave a message after the tone. Alternately, you can send an email to the help
team on PRISMS@deewr.gov.au that’s spelt PRISMS@deewr.gov.au. Thank you.

To Change the current hotline message you will need to dial the telephone number of the
Unified Messenger, which is 68383. Press *, then enter the PRISMS Mailbox number
(47298). Press * again, and enter the Pin number (13333). You can then follow the voice
prompts to the Personal Options section to change the message.

1.3           The PRISMS Mailbox
1.3.1         Access to the PRISMS Mailbox

To get access to the PRISMS Mailbox, a System Access Request (SAR) form will need to
be completed. This form can be found on the DEEWR Intranet at
http://dnet.hosts.network/forms/default.aspx. You will need to Add/Remove Resources,
with a resource type Public Folders. The resource to select is PRISMS EditorSA. The
request will need to be approved by both your supervisor and the Mailbox Administrator
(currently Ben Houston)

You will then need to add the PRISMS Mailbox to your Outlook profile. See the below
screen shot for advice on how to do this (all menus and dialogs have been composed into
one image)

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PRISMS Helpdesk Procedures

1.   From the Tools menu, select E-mail Accounts

2.   Select View or change existing e-mail accounts (default) and click Next

3.   Select Microsoft Exchange Server (default) and click Change…

4.   Click More Settings…

5.   Select the Advanced tab, and in the Mailboxes section, click Add…

6.   Type Prisms in the dialog box. Close all dialog boxes by clicking OK/Next>/Finish as
     appropriate.

You should now have Mailbox – Prisms as an item in the Navigation Pane (the bit on the
left hand side of the Outlook screen).

Figure 1    How to add the PRISMS Mailbox to your Outlook (all menus and
            dialog boxes composed into one image)




1.3.2         Inbox procedures

Because the Inbox is accessed by each member of the Helpdesk staff, it is important to
follow some simple housekeeping rules.

●    When an email, fax or voicemail is first presented to the Inbox, its summary line is
     Bolded, indicating that the message is unread. If you read the message and do not
     immediately respond to it, you should return the message to its unread state. This
     avoids confusion as to which messages are being investigated and which are not. It

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PRISMS Helpdesk Procedures

     is recommended that you set your Reading Pane options (Tools> Options…, Other
     tab Reading Pane…) such that a message is not considered read while it is
     previewed in the Reading Pane.

●    Any messages that have been dealt with should be moved to the appropriate
     Completed sub-folder, not left in the Inbox.

●    If you forward an email to someone else to deal with, edit the message (Open the
     email, then Edit>Edit Message) to include who you forwarded it to and when. This is
     not strictly necessary for obvious forwards, such as to the ESOS or ARC mailboxes.

●    When responding to emails and on the telephone, do not give out personal or study
     details of students, unless it is something that the provider will have access to. For
     example, you would be able to tell a VET provider when the student will be finishing
     their Cert IV CoE and beginning their Diploma CoE, but you would not be able to
     give them details about the Bachelor CoE that they have with a University
     afterwards.

Archiving

Every few months or so, in order to reduce the size of the Inbox, Helpdesk staff should
archive the Completed folder. To do this, you will need to choose Archive… from the File
menu. Ensure the filename reflects the dates of the archived messages, and save the .pst
file in the appropriate subfolder of X:\CONSUMER PROTECTION &
REGISTRATIONS\PRISMS Development Team\PRISMS Help Desk\Outlook archives

To archive a folder, select the folder required then go to File > Archive.

Make sure the archive location is in the subfolder above, name the file to the appropriate
month and click OK. You may also need to alter the date forward for items to be
archived to ensure that all items in the folder get included.

To access archived messages, choose File>Open>Outlook Data File. Navigate to the file
containing the messages you wish to view, and click ‘Ok’. A folder containing the archived
items will appear in your Navigation Pane (the bit on the left hand side of the Outlook
screen).

If you are done with any particular .pst file, you can remove the folder from your
Navigation Pane by right-clicking on it and selecting ‘Close “<name of folder>”’.

1.3.3         Standard Responses in Outlook

There is new functionality in Outlook that allows us to have our standard responses saved
ready to be inserted directly into emails as needed.

Unfortunately we each have to set this up individually on our account. It’s a bit tedious
to set up but saves time on replies.

To do this:

1.   Open this saved email:



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PRISMS Helpdesk Procedures

      Standard Helpdesk responses\Standard Responses in Outlook.oft

2.    Click on Reply to the email (but don’t send it)

3.    Click on the Insert Menu in the ribbon

4.    Select the first block of text for Standard Response 1 (from ‘Dear...’ down to the
      colours below the signature block

5.    Click on Quick Parts

6.    Click on Save Selection to Quick Part Gallery

7.    Enter a name for the response. You can use numbering to place the most-used
      responses at the top of the list

8.    Click OK

      The Quick Part is now created. Repeat this process for the rest of the standard
      responses you wish to add. Now when you want to reply to an email in future with
      a standard response simply click on Insert – Quick Parts and select the appropriate
      response. Voila!

      Alternatively to clicking on Insert then Quick Parts you can use the keyboard
      shortcut of ALT + N + Q - or you can Add Quick Parts to the Quick Access Toolbar
      (right click on Quick Parts, then click Add to Quick Access Toolbar)

      To edit or delete a quick part, click on Quick Parts and then right click on the drop-
      down list that appears and choose either Edit and Properties or Organise and Delete.

1.3.4            Printing faxes

Faxes come to the Inbox in the form of an email from IMCEARFAX-RightFax+20E-
mail+20Gateway@deewr.gov.au with the faxed document attached as .TIF file. The best
program to view and print these files is Microsoft Office Document Imaging, which should
be the default program to open such files. Sometimes, however, you may find that faxes
open in Windows Picture and Fax Viewer, which makes printing them inconvenient
(especially for faxes with multiple pages). If this happens, you will need to reset Microsoft
Office Document Imaging to be the default program. Do this by opening the program
(Start menu>All Programs>Microsoft Office>Microsoft Office Tools> Microsoft Office
Document Imaging) selecting Tools>Options, Other tab and clicking the Reset button.

1.4              Other useful Contacts and References
[include contact details for

ESOS Helpline (02) 6240 5069 http://aei.gov.au/aei/esos/EnquiryForm.aspx

DIAC studentvisa@immi.gov.au, ph 131 881

CRICOS http://cricos.deewr.gov.au/


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PRISMS Helpdesk Procedures

AEI http://www.aei.gov.au/Aei/Default.aspx

Provider User Guide

https://prisms.deewr.gov.au/Information/ShowInformation.aspx?Doc=Provider_User_Gui
de&key=information-provider-user-guide&Heading=

Reporting Quick Reference Guide

https://prisms.deewr.gov.au/HTMLDocuments/SCV_QuickReferenceGuide.pdf

Online Training

http://www.mcqi.com.au/temp/dwr400/rc3/Agent/

http://www.mcqi.com.au/temp/dwr400/rc3/CoEAdmin/

http://www.mcqi.com.au/temp/dwr400/rc3/CoECreate/

National Code Explanatory Guide

http://www.aei.gov.au/AEI/ESOS/NationalCodeExplanatoryGuide/Default.htm


Section 2                   Helpdesk Duties
The primary responsibility of the Helpdesk staff is to manage the telephone line and the
Inbox, answering the questions asked by our customers – mostly these will be staff
members of an education provider, but occasionally there will be an Agent, or a CRICOS
Administrator, or even a student (though the Helpdesk should never deal directly with
students). It is important that someone is logged into the phone for as much of the day
as possible, to prevent the Inbox from being cluttered with voice messages (and also to
ensure good customer service, of course!).

There are a number of tasks that don’t directly involve answering a query from an
external stakeholder.

2.1           Checking messages from DIAC – Nightly Tally
An email from DIAC regarding the total number of messages sent to PRISMS will be sent
to the Inbox every day. This is to be compared with the number of messages received in
PRISMS from DIAC. The subject of the email should be ‘COE record counts sent from
Mainframe Immigration’. If the email has not yet arrived in the morning, please let Ben
Houston know and he will chase it up.

2.1.1         Procedure for checking today’s Message counts

From the PRISMS home page, select ‘Administration’, then ‘Messages’ on the left hand
side menu.

Compare the total number of messages received today from DIAC listed on the
‘Messages’ webpage with the number of records listed in the email. If they are matched,


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PRISMS Helpdesk Procedures

move the email to ‘Completed’ folder in Outlook and do nothing else. Otherwise, read the
Find the Missing Message Section.

** Please note that the data transmission process will normally start at about 1am each
morning. If the number of messages is too many for that day (i.e., 10000+), that is likely
to take more time for data transmission (roughly about 20 messages per minute). By the
time you check the tally (i.e. 9am), the data transmission process might be still in
progress. Try to refresh the screen a few times to see whether this is the case. If so, let
it complete the whole process first.

2.1.2           Procedure for checking the previous Message counts

From the PRISMS home page, select ‘Administration’, then ‘Messages’ on the left hand
side menu.

Select a particular date and do a search on each of the following message types: ‘Student
Visa variation Message’, ‘Student Visa Non Grant Message’ and ‘Student Movement
Message’ in the Search Criteria tab. Write down the total number of rows retrieved from
each of the search results.

Add all the search results and check the sum against the number of records listed in the
email. If they are matched, move the email to ‘Completed’ folder in Outlook and do
nothing else. Otherwise, read the Find the Missing Message Section.

2.1.3           Find the Missing Message

To find out which message has gone missing, certain search criteria need to be set

The two sets of radio buttons should be any combination other than ‘Error Flag’ = No and
‘Acted On Flag’ = Yes, and the Message Type can be one of the following; ‘Student Visa
variation Message’, ‘Student Visa Non Grant Message’ or ‘Student Movement Message’.

Try different combinations of the above settings (there are a total of 9 combinations (Try
Error Flag = Yes and Acted on Flag = Yes + Student Visa Variation first ) and start
searching until the missing message is found. The missing message requires special
attention and needs to be looked at individually. Print a hardcopy and give it to one of
the BAs for further investigation.

Note: if you find any messages with error ‘Invalid CoE Code’ where in the Message Detail
the CoE code = TRANSITION these can be ignored and included in the message count.

2.2             Checking messages from DIAC – ESOS/Non-
                ESOS errors
Eric to write

2.3             Processing Registration Forms
PRISMS moved to an online registration process in 2009. Users register online by
clicking on the Register link on the logon page. This generates an auto-email to the user


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PRISMS Helpdesk Procedures

and their chosen Registration Signatory Delegate (RSD). The RSDs must confirm their
approval by forwarding their approval email to the PRISMS helpdesk.

To activate a user when a RSD approval email is received search for the user by their
email address. Check that:

1.   user details, provider code and role match

2.   the validation code matches

3.   the email address the RSD has sent the approval email from matches the email
     address against their name in the RSD list

(Note that it is acceptable to receive an approval email from a PEO/RSD’s executive
assistant on behalf of the PEO/RSD provided that you can see that

If so you can approve the request by clicking on the ‘Activate’ link

This will activate the user account but will only give them access to the Online Training.
Most users must normally complete this before they can gain full access to PRISMS.
However we have the option to give a temporary or permanent override. Give the
permanent override where users have used PRISMS previously.

This is intentionally brief – it will change drastically when Adam’s Paperless Rego is
implemented]

PRISMS Registration forms are faxed (or sometimes emailed) to the Helpdesk. In fact,
almost all faxes received will be registration forms.

The first step in processing these forms is to print them out, and place them in the
PRISMS In-Tray, located on top of the filing cabinet.

2.3.1         CoE Officer forms (COE-04a and COE-04i)

These are by far the most numerous of the PRISMS registration forms. To process them,
compare the signature of the PEO/Delegate to that contained on the Signature Sample
Form for that provider (if processing multiple forms, it is suggested that they are ordered
by provider code, to ensure that you aren’t repeatedly pulling out the same folder!).

If they match, place a red tick beside the signature. You can now activate the user’s
account, or approve the additional access. To activate an account, perform a search for
the pending user, and click ‘Activate user’ on the right hand side of the screen. Check
that all the details match the form (there is a problem if they don’t!), and click ‘Ok’ to
send the user their new temporary password. To approve additional access, click
‘Additional Access’ on the left hand side of the screen, and search for the user’s name.
Check the box against the role on the form, and click ‘Approve Role’.

2.3.2         Government Officer forms (GO-04)

Mostly these will be DIAC officers, who need to send their forms to their Central Office in
Canberra to have them approved, before they are forwarded to us at the Helpdesk.



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PRISMS Helpdesk Procedures

Samples of the signatures of those DIAC officers authorised to approve these forms can
be found in the DIAC folder in the filing cabinet.

Occasionally there will be a CRICOS Administrator or DEEWR Officer requesting access.
For CRICOS Admins, the signatories can be found in the State and Territories folder in
the filing cabinet. For DEEWR Officers [develop approval procedure – perhaps get a
blanket approval from George or something]

Once the signature has been verified, the form is to be processed as per CoE Officer. The
role associated with all these forms is PRISMS Browse.

2.3.3         Agent User forms (AG-04a and AG04i)

For AG-04a forms, process them as described in 2.3.1 for Additional Access. For Initial
Registration, you will need to assign the user to an organisation. It may be necessary to
search for other users with similar email addresses in order to find the organisation as it’s
listed in PRISMS. If the organisation does not exist, it will need to be created. Ensure that
the name begins with “Agent – “ and concludes with the country in parentheses. The next
step is to allocate initial roles to the user. Check the box with the Provider code that
matches the one on the form or, if none of them match, select the Add Provider to Agent
option, and add the provider. Then check the appropriate box and finalise the user’s
access.

2.3.4         IDP User forms (IDPU-04)

An IDP form needs to be signed by one of the delegates listed in the (you guessed it) IDP
folder in the filing cabinet. As with Agent Users, an IDP user needs to be allocated to an
IDP Office. If you can’t find an IDP office in PRISMS that matches the address of the
form, a new office will need to be created. This will require full address details from IDP
Australia’s Central Office. Once the pending user has been assigned to an office, they
should be given access to create CoEs for all providers who have registered with that
office.

2.4           PEO Signature Sample Forms
The PEO Signature Sample form is located on the PEO Contact details page. The form
must be completed and faxed to the PRISMS Helpdesk whenever there is a change to one
of the RSD contacts, including removal of a contact.

Update the details in PRISMS as required, then rename the fax as follows:

‘RSD – [provider code] [provider name]

and file it in the PEO Sample Signatures Outlook folder.

2.5           Geocoding
PRISMS users are occasionally asked to create reports on providers based on electorates
and other physical location requirements such as regional providers. This data is not
entered into the system at any time by the CRICOS Administrator, and needs to be
added separately.


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PRISMS Helpdesk Procedures

Procedures for the geocoding process and the spreadsheets containing the geocoded data
can be found at X:\CONSUMER PROTECTION & REGISTRATIONS\PRISMS Development
Team\Development Activity - .Net\Master Specs\PRISMS\Geocoding

2.6           System Messages and News Items
Administration > News Maintenance

Administration > Site Maintenance

2.7           Change Requests (CRs)
Helpdesk staff are sometimes required to create a Change Request (formerly known as a
PR – Problem Report or ER – Enhancement Request), if a relatively minor issue is
identified with PRISMS or the CRICOS website. Helpdesk staff would usually not complete
a CR without discussion with a Business Analyst.

First, jump on to the Sharepoint website
http://dnet.hosts.network/projects/prisms/project.aspx to bring up the list of current
CRs. In the top left hand corner of the list there is a drop-down box titled ‘New’. It has
only one option, which is ‘New Item’. Fill in all the boxes as appropriate.

The life cycle of a CR can be seen here X:\CONSUMER PROTECTION &
REGISTRATIONS\PRISMS Development Team\Sharepoint (Visio required)

2.8           Other bits and pieces
2.8.1         Breach of PRISMS Conditions of Use

Occasionally you will catch someone having breached the PRISMS Conditions of Use.
Mostly this will be sharing a User account, which you will discover when the person who
doesn’t have their own account contacts the Helpdesk with a problem (usually brought
about by inexperience). T he penalty for breaching the conditions of use is suspension of
the PRISMS account. When you suspend an account, ensure that you enter the date and
the reason for the suspension in the comments field. An email will then go to the
registered email address, stating that in order to get their account reactivated, we will
need a letter from their PEO stating that (s)he acknowledges that a breach in the
Conditions of Use has occurred, and that (s)he has taken steps to ensure that it won’t
happen again.

When the Helpdesk receives such a letter, reactivate the user’s account, and place the
letter in the ‘In’ tray on the shelf underneath the Provider Signature Samples in the filing
cabinet.

2.8.2         Notification of absent staff

It often happens that other staff in the section will email or telephone the PRISMS
Helpdesk when they are unable to attend work that day. If this is the case, you will need
to forward an email to the rest of the section with the details of whoever is not coming in.




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PRISMS Helpdesk Procedures


Section 3                   Common Helpdesk Queries and
                            how to answer them
These common queries account for probably 80-90% of all queries to the Helpdesk!
MSWord documents containing standard responses to some of these queries can be
found in X:\CONSUMER PROTECTION & REGISTRATIONS\PRISMS Development
Team\PRISMS Help Desk\Procedures\Standard Helpdesk responses.

3.1           Queries from Providers
3.1.1         Which variation do I use?

This is one of the most common kinds of query, and most of the time you will be able to
answer using the Reporting Quick Reference Guide (PDF).

Some additional comments about the Student requests change to existing enrolment
option: unlike the other options, the provider does not get to choose which sub-option is
applicable. Instead, a duplicate CoE is presented and the system works out what type of
variation is appropriate given the changes that are made. It is also important to
remember that when an extension CoE is being created, the new CoE should be issued
for the period of the extension only, i.e. having a Proposed Course Start Date on or after
the Proposed Course End Date.

3.1.2         Changing Student or CoE details (including dates on
              CoE/Welfare arrangements)

The procedure to change Student or CoE details depends on the status of the CoE in
question. If the CoE is Approved, then just about everything can be changed by the
provider, by creating the SCV ‘Change to CoE/Student details’. This will cancel the
existing CoE and present a duplicate CoE to be created, where the provider just needs to
change the bits that are wrong. It is important to note that for changes to the personal
details of the student, the provider will need to click the second tab, labelled Student
Summary.

If the status of the CoE is not Approved (mostly this will be when the CoE status is Visa
Granted or Studying, but occasionally you will be asked to change the personal details on
a Finished or Cancelled CoE), then the story is a bit different.

For changes to the personal details of the student, we can do that, but we’ll need to see a
copy of the student’s passport. When telling this to a Provider, make sure they include
the CoE code number, so that we can find the student. It is simply a matter of confirming
that the passport supports the requested change, and then amending the student record
to reflect the passport.

For changes that delay the proposed dates of study (i.e. the student will be starting late,
or finishing late) then the provider will need to decide whether there are compassionate
or compelling circumstances involved. If so, they can perform a Deferral or Extension (as
appropriate). If not, the only choice is to cancel the CoE outright using Non-
commencement of studies and create a new one.



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PRISMS Helpdesk Procedures

For any other changes (moving the start or end dates of study forward, dates of welfare
arrangements, whether or not OSHC is arranged by the provider, Immigration office for
visa application etc) the provider will need to use the Student requests change to existing
details variation. This will cancel the existing CoE and create a new one with the correct
details.

3.1.3         Changing User/Organisation details

PEO or Organisation

It is the responsibility of the State Education Authorities (CRICOS administrators) to
maintain PEO and Organisation contact details. Contact details for the CRICOS
administrators in each state can be found at the CRICOS website.

PRISMS users’ personal details

Through the Change My Details page, users can update their phone number and secret
question/answer. For anything else (amendments to users’ name or date of birth, or their
Login ID/email address), they will need to contact the Helpdesk and we can make that
change. This is a good opportunity to find out when users have passed their PRISMS
access details to a colleague.

3.1.4         PRISMS Access

Adding new users

Everyone who requires PRISMS access needs to register online. The end result of the
online process is that the user is sent an email containing a Registration Form. That form
is to be signed by the user, and countersigned by someone in their organisation with the
authority to approve PRISMS users. The forms are then sent to us, and we process them
as per section 2.3.

Upgrading existing users

For someone with existing PRISMS access, they will not be able to follow the above steps,
because their email address will already be in use. Instead, they should login to the
system, and go to the Change My Details page. From there, they can request Additional
Access, whether it be a different level of access at their current provider, or access to a
different provider altogether. They are then led through a similar process to the initial
registration, where they are sent an email containing the Additional Access form. Again,
this form needs to be signed and countersigned, and sent to us for processing.

Removing users

If a provider asks us to remove a user, we simply find the user in PRISMS, append ‘.1’ to
their email address (so that they can re-register later if they wish. It may be that this is
not their first registration, so you might have to use ‘.2’ or ‘.3’), add a comment including
the date and the name of the person requesting the removal of the user, save the
changes and hit Deactivate.

Be warned, though. If the user has access to multiple providers, it may well be that only
access to one provider needs to be removed, rather than the entire account. If this is the

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PRISMS Helpdesk Procedures

case, use the second tab ‘User Roles’ to remove the role appropriate to the request. You
still need to enter the date, the name of the person requesting the removal, and the
provider code/s removed in the comments box and hit the Save User Details button.

3.1.5         Problems logging in

The most common Helpdesk queries relating to logging into the system are where the
user has either forgotten their password, or entered it incorrectly too many times and
locked themselves out.

Either of those situations can be remedied by clicking the ‘Forgotten your password?’ link
that is located just to the right of the password entry box at the login page. This will ask
the user to verify their identity using their date of birth and the answer to the secret
question that they selected at registration. The answer to the secret question will need to
be entered exactly as it was at registration, spaces and casing included.

If a user cannot answer their secret question via the online system (perhaps because
they made a small typo when entering their answer at registration) they can contact the
Helpdesk. We can see what they entered, and apply a human’s intelligence to the
comparison, rather than requiring a machine’s precision. If they can answer satisfactorily
(and they correctly confirm their date of birth, of course) then we can reset their
password manually – click Reset password & reactivate link at the right hand side of the
View/Edit User page.

If the user cannot give a satisfactory answer to their question, then we cannot unlock
their account. Their account will need to be deactivated by appending ‘.1’ (or ‘.2’ or
whatever number they’re up to!) to the email address, entering a comment with the date
and stating that the user couldn’t answer their secret question and clicking the Deactivate
link on the right hand side.

3.1.6         PRISMS is asking me for a release letter, but I don’t
              think I need one

Standard 7 of the National Code prohibits providers from enrolling a student who has not
yet completed 6 months of study in their principal course. PRISMS helps to enforce this
by checking, when a CoE is being approved, whether the student has another CoE that
has been identified as the principal course, and whether the student will have done 6
months of study by the Proposed Course Start Date of this new CoE.

If this validation is not passed (i.e. there is a principal course identified and there won’t
have been 6 months of study done when the new CoE commences) then PRISMS displays
a message stating that a letter of release may be required, and asking if the provider has
obtained one. Since January 2009 this check is made even if the CoE for the original
principal course has been cancelled.

Now, there are some circumstances where a letter of release is not required (for
example, if a student wants to undertake a short course that does not impact on any
existing CoEs, then a letter of release is probably not required). However, the Helpdesk is
not currently able to advise providers whether a release letter is required for any given
situation. Callers with questions like this should be referred to the ESOS Helpline (phone
or email) and emails should be forwarded to the ESOS Mailbox.


                                                                                          13
PRISMS Helpdesk Procedures

3.1.7         This CoE is being rejected as ‘Invalid’

This message can occur when a student applies for a visa using the eVisa system, and
enters an incorrect CoE code number. The message can also appear for valid CoEs, and
when the provider can’t see anything wrong with the CoE, they call the Helpdesk.

There are a number of known reasons why a valid CoE would be returned by eVisa as
being invalid:

●    The CoE has been Cancelled. This is something that providers can usually figure out
     by themselves!

●    The student’s personal details (date of birth, spelling of name etc) are incorrect. This
     can be particularly relevant to students from USA, as they tend to enter their date of
     birth backwards.

●    The CoE has a Proposed Course Start Date that is in the past. eVisa will not work
     with such CoEs. This also means that if a student needs to get an extension to their
     visa using the CoE they’ve been studying on, they cannot use the eVisa system.

●    The CoE has only just been created. It can take some time for the information that a
     CoE has been created to pass from PRISMS to the appropriate parts of DIAC’s
     computer systems. It is best to allow 24-48 hours between the CoE creation and
     eVisa application.

●    The student has more than one Approved CoE, and there has been a change to the
     student’s personal details. This is best explained with an example. Suppose a
     student is given three CoEs under the name of John Citizen. The provider
     subsequently performs a SCV on one of the CoEs to change the name of the student
     to Jane Citizen. A new CoE is created, and the details are sent to DIAC of Jane.
     However, the other two CoEs are still present in DIAC’s systems as John, so when
     Jane tries to apply for her eVisa, the system sees the mis-match between Jane and
     John, and returns the CoE as Invalid. To fix this, all existing Approved CoEs will
     need to be cancelled and reissued.

3.1.8         This CoE is the wrong status

Cancelled

There are several reasons why a provider might not expect to see a CoE at the status of
Cancelled. Usually it will be because PRISMS has identified the student as Non-ESOS, as
described in this document (see also this advice to providers). In this instance, providers
should be informed which Non-ESOS category the student falls under (this information
would have been present in the DIAC Alert that is presented to the provider for the first
28 days after the CoE is cancelled, so there is no privacy issue). If that does not fit with
the actual circumstances of the student, then the provider will need to contact DIAC to
have them fix up the student’s visa information.

When DIAC cancels a student’s visa, any CoEs attached to that visa are also cancelled.
Providers should check with DIAC whether or not the student can continue to study with
them.



                                                                                          14
PRISMS Helpdesk Procedures

Sometimes providers do not realise that certain variations will cancel the CoE, particularly
the Change to Student/CoE details variation and Deferrals where the end date will be
affected. For these variations providers are offered the chance to create a replacement
CoE and the default answer to that question is ‘Yes’. However, if the provider says ‘No’,
they are left with a cancelled CoE and no replacement.

Studying

Most of the time when a provider asks us why a CoE is at the status of Studying, they’ve
reported on the CoE some time ago, and DIAC has subsequently either responded to the
SCV in such a way that the CoE was brought back to life (currently this happens only with
‘Provider error, claims not proven’, but it used to happen with other responses) or
granted a new visa against that CoE, which used to re-activate the CoE. If the CoE was
brought back to life with ‘Provider error, claims not proven’, the provider will need to
contact DIAC to find out why that was done. They may need to report on the CoE again.
For the other instances, we can ‘God Mode’ the CoE back to Studying (or Finished if the
dates are appropriate), making sure that we enter the appropriate Actual Dates of Study
and a useful comment.

If a provider brings to your attention a CoE that is the wrong status due to an event
outside of their control, record the CoE in the following spreadsheet X:\CONSUMER
PROTECTION & REGISTRATIONS\PRISMS Development Team\PRISMS Help Desk\Help
Desk Statistics\CoEs reported by Providers as wrong status.xls.

Approved/Expired

An Offshore CoE that has had no visa data recorded against it will not automatically go to
Studying at the proposed course start date. Instead, it will remain at Approved for 60
days and then be set to Expired. The idea is that a CoE should not be able to be used to
get a student visa when the course is two months down. If the student is actually in
Australia and studying, providers have the opportunity to Update CoE Status to either
Studying or Finished (depending on the dates). See page 25 of the Providers User Guide
(PDF) for further information.

If an Expired CoE needs to be reported on (most likely for Non-commencement of
studies) then it will need to have its status updated as described above. Theoretically,
however, this should never happen, because the CoE should be reported on within 14
days, while it is still at Approved.

Reported On

This status was used until July 2007 as the status a CoE was set to after a SCV was
completed. DIAC would investigate the circumstances that brought about the SCV, and
finalise the CoE accordingly, either cancelling the CoE or returning the status to Studying.
Since July 2007 all SCVs have either cancelled the CoE or left the status alone, but there
are still many CoEs that were reported on prior to that date. DEEWR and DIAC are
working on a bulk clean up of these CoEs, but in the meantime, we deal with them as
they arise. Mostly this will be when a CRICOS Administrator refuses to cancel a course
because of a small number of Reported On CoEs still attached to the course. We look at
the kind of SCV that was created, and set the CoE status accordingly [find out from Adam
exactly what statuses lead to what]



                                                                                           15
PRISMS Helpdesk Procedures

Inactive

An Inactive CoE is one that was cancelled at Saved or Pending status – i.e. it has never
been Approved. It is not mentioned in the Explanation of CoE status in the Provider User
Guide, so people get confused when they see one in a report or export.

3.1.9         I made an error when completing a SCV. What do I do?

For some SCVs, DIAC have the option of finalising them with a code that returns
“Provider error, claims not proven” to PRISMS.

Avoid this if possible, by having the provider enter another SCV with the correct details
and comment advising the details of the error. For CoEs that can’t have another SCV
added have the provider create a new CoE with the correct details.

If the above are not appropriate, for example, the student should not have been reported
on at all, then advise the provider to try to DIAC option. When received, the DIAC error
code will reactivate the CoE,.. To arrange this, the provider will need to advise DIAC in
writing that the report was made in error. Have them send an email to the student visa
helpdesk containing all the details. (The studentvisa helpdesk should forward on to the
Compliance Systems Support area (help.desk.ccs@immi.gov.au. Note : this address is
not to be given to providers) for action. This can only be done for incorrectly reported
SCVs, not for incorrectly issued CoEs. DIAC can also only reverse SCVs that will result
in an investigation with a subseqeuent Non-compliance notice on their end. The most
likely categories to result in an NCN are – Non-payment of fees, Disciplinary reasons,
Student has died, Unsatisfactory attendance, Unsatisfactory course progress and
Deferrals.

The Studentvisa Helpdesk sometimes get confused on this issue and tell the provider the
student has to report. In this case let the Compliance section helpdesk know directly,
and cc the Studentvisa helpdesk so they are aware of the correct procedure.

For incorrectly issued CoEs advise the provider to cancel them using Non-commencement
of studies as the reason and create a new CoE with the correct details.

3.1.10        I can’t seem to generate a CoE/Welfare
              letter/Report/new password

The most common cause of problems here is the user’s web browser blocking the pop-up
that displays the Welfare letter/ Report/confirmation of password change etc. Have them
disable their pop-up blocker, and they should be right. It is recommended that users
allow pop-ups for the whole PRISMS website.

3.1.11        I can’t find <country> on the list of Offshore
              Immigration offices

Not every country in the world hosts an Australian Embassy or Consulate. DIAC
maintains a World Index that will nominate the appropriate Consulate or Embassy for
every country.




                                                                                            16
PRISMS Helpdesk Procedures

However, there are a couple of Embassies that have only limited visa processing. Belgium
is one example. In these cases, the World Index does refer to the local Embassy, but it
still does not appear on the list of offshore posts. You will need to go into the details for
that particular Embassy, and check the Visa Information tab to find out where Temporary
Entry visas are processed for residents from that country.

3.2           Queries from DIAC
We have relatively few queries from DIAC officers that are not covered above.
Sometimes DIAC will grant a visa with an incorrect statistical code. This may have the
effect of PRISMS recognising the CoE as Non-ESOS, and subsequently cancelling the CoE
(see this document for information about exactly which visa codes will cancel CoEs). If
DIAC simply undo and redo the visa grant, the resulting visa grant message will come up
against the Cancelled, Non-ESOS CoE and it will not get processed. In these
circumstances, the Helpdesk will need to ‘God Mode’ the CoE back to Studying (or Visa
Granted or Finished depending on the study dates) before the new visa details come
through. However we do not do this until advised to do so by the TRIPS area in DIAC
(Trips.Data.DIMA@immi.gov.au) as they may have to change a stat code or other details
first.

‘God mode’ is found on the View / Edit CoE page for PRISMS Administrator users. Click
on the ‘CoE Administration’ button and complete the appropriate details, including a
comment explaining the reason for the action.

3.3           Queries from CRICOS Administrators
Most of the CRICOS Administrators know what they’re doing – a few of their questions
can be answered with reference to the CRICOS Administrator Guidelines (PDF), but most
queries will be more complex, requiring investigation or assistance from Ben Houston or
another senior PRISMS supervisor.

3.4           Queries from Students
The Helpdesk never deals directly with students, as students do not use the PRISMS
software. However, occasionally a student will telephone or email us.

3.4.1         I want to come to Australia to study. What do I
              do?/How do I get a scholarship?

There are websites that have been set up to answer exactly that question. SIA, AEI
Online, Endeavour etc. [include links]. Students should also be advised to contact
institutions directly for scholarship or enrolment information.

3.4.2         I’m having a problem with my school (they owe me
              money/haven’t done something they promised etc). Can
              you help?

This is not something that the Helpdesk can assist with – students should be referred to
the ESOS Policy Helpline.



                                                                                          17

				
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