Building Bridges: Collaborate with IT

collaborationPartnerships among University departments can accomplish complex and far-reaching tasks more effectively than when these are acting alone. Working together to improve processes that help to develop solutions together, can generate good ideas with results that might not otherwise manifest. It also lends itself to creating an environment where departments can gather their resources to more effectively research new product and process implementations, or to leverage and negotiate prices and terms from vendors.

How do we collaborate with IT?
One of the main areas that IT can help is in the vetting and implementation of Cloud Computing Services and third party products. There are policies and guidelines for the Use of Cloud Computing Services. There are security and Banner/ERP integration implications that need to be considered. IT also works closely with General Counsel for contract reviews. By pulling together IT resources and the functional user experts, we can ensure that we are getting the best product for the University. Individuals can email techsupport@scranton.edu with project details. The Technology Support Center will review the submission and submit the request to the appropriate IT office.

What IT projects are groups currently collaborating on?
Currently, we are looking at both a RoyalDrive and a Footprints replacement. Teams for both of these projects consist of faculty and staff, to test and help with the implementation of the different products. Another area that IT has decided to collaborate with outside offices is the Windows 10 pilot, because it has allowed for more testing by a variety of members in our community to make the deployment more successful and streamlined for our customers.

Why is it significant?
By creating a collaborative team, we can gather necessary experts to help a project succeed. By doing so, we can more effectively influence vendors, analyze system compatibility and plan implementations. By gathering our efforts, we reduce duplication and issues, and concentrate on a more proactive approach that provides multiple voices for troubleshooting and problem solving during the implementation process, rather than once the project is completed.

Even if collaboration might require additional planning and perhaps a longer implementation process, the benefits are far greater and promote a shared vision and common goals.

Sources: Jesse, M., & Kadlec, A. (2015, July 10). 7 Things You Should Know About Cross-Institutional Collaboration. Retrieved August 09, 2016, from https://library.educause.edu/resources/2015/7/7-things-you-should-know-about-crossinstitutional-collaboration

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