by Divina Paredes

CIO 100: University of Canterbury

Mar 24, 2016
Technology Industry

THE UNIVERSITY OF Canterbury (UC) in Christchurch may be New Zealand’s second oldest university, but it is at the forefront of implementing innovative technology to service students and staff.

CIO Andy Keiller says, “UC IT Services has a vision to simplify IT to enable the delivery of differentiating solutions, improve the engagement with our clients and reduce ongoing support costs.”

Supporting a total staff of 1887 and around 11,943 equivalent fulltime students, the university’s IT team of 127 aims to focus efforts in 2016 on customer relationship management, business intelligence and data warehousing, research management system. The team will also continue the student management system and identity management project, which was initiated by the team last year.

Among the innovative technologies to be implemented within the year, according to Keiller, are Skype for Business (suppliers were invited to quote for the telephony equipment in December 2015), Windows 10, and Office 2016.

He says what will drive most of the IT investment of UC will be big data, mobile technologies, customer/student experience technologies, VoIP/unified communications, and collaboration technologies.

Challenges Keiller reckons the IT team will face in delivering such projects are speed of deployment, managing complexity of systems/apps, and working within budget constraints.

“The IT operational budget will not increase for 2016 and will have to support the increased investment for IT projects this year (by 10 to 20 per cent) through effi ciency savings,” he states.

Over the past year, the biggest improvement delivered by IT was the implementation of new financial management systems supported by improved processes and working practices, he says.

IT Services also introduced last year the new student management system, identity management, telephony system replacement, and a new web content management system