Adding a new tool

How to best approach adding a new tool/product, including giving users access with their UW profile.

It’s great to improve and innovate while making sure to use campus resources sustainably, efficiently, and with accessibility and inclusivity in mind. Adding a new tool must be done with care, because connecting to the necessary information might have unforeseen complexities.

Things to consider first

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Make sure we follow the same rules

University data is more than just spreadsheets and presentations - it’s information gathered about students, academics, budgets, human resources, research, and facilities.

Each of these domains have their own stewards and policies following institutional or legal standards. This is also known as data governance.

Make sure we're considering any risks

Each new tool that connects to university data also needs to be secure, which means it's possible that it will need to be reviewed by Cybersecurity to see what risk might be involved.

Each tool poses a potential security risk and may need to go through a Risk Management Framework with the campus cybersecurity team.

All tools will need to be secure and not expose campus to any unintended issues. Whether you discover a new tool, or select a pre-approved everyday data tool, there is help available to strategize and identify any red flags or concerns.

Make sure we're thinking of the big picture

In order to be good stewards of university resources, it's good practice to see if there is an existing solution first.  It can save time and money.

Once a tool has been approved, there is still planning needed to ensure its continued success. Conversations should also take place about:

  • Training
  • Maintenance
  • Who will support the new tool

Make sure it's accessible to everyone

If you are considering adding a new product or tool, digital accessibility should be part of the decision making process.

Buying accessible technology | Evaluating technology for accessibility

Before choosing a tool

Talk to someone who can help

A preliminary conversation can help answer questions and provide ideas on how to best move forward. It's possible that there is an existing solution that might work

The first step is sharing some information about your plans.

Bucky Badger answering questions

If you’ve already chosen a tool

Even if you have already procured a tool, help is available to check for any red flags and help develop a plan using provided vendor documentation.

Every tool we bring to campus needs to follow rules surrounding cybersecurity, accessibility, and data governance requirements.

Get a consult

Vendor suggestions that their tools will integrate with UW-Madison data should not be assumed to work. Consulting with an expert can help prevent unforeseen complexities.

Giving users access with their UW-Madison profile

Entry door

The campus login system, UW-Madison Login (NetID Login Service) is the recommended solution to log people in to your tool using their UW-Madison profile.

It allows web application administrators a safe, reliable way to access user data without setting up their own authentication and authorization system. Instead of adding to the list of logins that users have to remember and administrators have to maintain, using NetID is an easy way to securely give your users access.

Getting started | About NetID | Get help

New to this process?

A plant just getting startedNot a problem. Whether it’s a new service for all of campus or something to help enrich a specific course, making data tools accessible can benefit campus as a whole.

There’s help available for just about anyone at the University who might need to work with data. If you have an idea of what you’re looking for, many different groups are available to guide you through each stage and develop a strategic approach.

Contact a team to get started

Get help

General questions

Talk to an expert to get answers, guidance, and advice for your specific question.

Contact an expert

Data Stewards

The point person to help get access to the institutional data you need to use.

Find a data steward

What is institutional data?

Submit an Identity Data Integration (IDI) request


Folks who frequently use, access, and share data at UW-Madison.

TechPartners, Data Wonks, BI Community of Practice, more tech support groups