May 23 2019

4 Technology Solutions Smaller IT Teams Can Use to Expand Their Reach

Higher education technology staff use automation and infrastructure redesign to ensure digital services continue to run on campus.

As campuses become increasingly technologically integrated, universities face an increasing pressure to provide more IT support, many with the same number of, or fewer, IT staff members.

“Even though many universities are facing cost pressures, no university administrator has ever cut their way to glory,” Roy Mathew, a principal consultant with Deloitte’s higher education technology practice, told EdTech. “At some point you have to be competitive and attract a good student and faculty base.” 

Digital transformation has become a tool for higher education institutions to keep recruitment and retention steady during a time when prospective students are enticed by cheaper education alternatives

This focus on upgrading campus offerings means the onus is on technology staff to come up with creative solutions to keep universities’ digital infrastructures running. 

“Although a great proportion of CIO budgets haven’t recovered, there hasn’t been a letup in the demand for resources or serv¬ices,” Kenneth C. Green, director of The Campus Computing Project, told EdTech. “This has affected small colleges more than others.”


Experts Offer Advice on Stretching IT Resources

Universities both large and small are facing a problem maintaining IT efficiencies with fewer resources. To compensate, many are turning to technology solutions to expand their staff’s reach and ability, such as freeing up time by automating more mundane tasks

To help understand what is available, EdTech asked four higher education experts to share what tools they have found to be the most helpful in handling the workload.

William Warfel
The low-hanging fruit is automation. Pay attention to what someone is doing over and over, and make that process automatic.”

Willam Warfel System Network Administrator, Lake Land College

Christopher Arcarese
Simplify design and implement consistency in the network.”

Christopher Arcarese IT Systems Director, Community College of Denver

Donald Tharp
Look for ideas outside the department. Reach out to staff and faculty for input.”

Donald Tharp CITO, Ashland University

Roy Matthew
Eliminate redundancy. Often different departments don’t talk to each other, so a school will have 10 to 15 enterprise software licenses when they only need one. Think of it as spring cleaning.”

Roy Mathew Public Sector Technology Leader, Deloitte

To learn more about how universities are using technology to help IT teams work effectively, check out “Smart Solutions Help Small IT Teams Do More with Less.”

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