My resolution for the new academic year – more frequent blogging
One of the less important effects of the strange year we’ve just had was a dearth of blog posts here. There were many reasons for that absence. Some were pandemic related, as we had to adapt to new demands and cover for members of staff who weren’t able to work. Other reasons were more prosaic and of little interest. Many of those reasons no longer apply and now I want to get back into the habit of using this space to tell you what we’re up to.
Assuming I do keep to my new academic-year’s resolution, you can expect to see posts on a number of topics:
Core Systems Strategies – This is one of the strands of work that took a back seat while we responded to the onset of the pandemic. It is back up and running now. Several strategies have been reviewed by the University’s IT Committee and we’re working on a communications plan to make these known to all the relevant stakeholders.
Digital Estate – This is a new piece of work, under the auspices of the University’s Digital Strategy, to assess the University’s IT services and to prioritise investment. The title was chosen to bring this activity alongside similar planning exercises that are already in place for the University’s physical estate. The Enterprise Architecture section are supporting this activity and we can blog about our approaches (although not necessarily about the outcomes).
Service Catalogue & Applications Catalogue – I’ve mentioned in a previous post about some of our work with the ITIL team on the Service Catalogue. This an activity that we’re looking to extend and enhance, if we can allocate the time and resource. The Applications Catalogue is a key requirement from some of the Core Systems Strategy work, so we will have to take that forward.
CRM / Relationship Management – Informations Services have two CRM services up and running. The Industry Relationship Management (IRM) service focuses on building relationships with external partners for research and consultancy, while the Enquiry Management service is the University’s first foray into CRM for prospective students and enquirers. Our section helped to set up these services and advised on the configuration of the CRM platforms.
Data Architecture – Some of our core activities are to develop the University data model, populate the data warehouse, and advise on general issues of data governance. For the last year, a lot of this work has been going on behind the scenes of the People & Money project, which is replacing the University’s HR, Finance, Payroll & Procurement systems. After a lot of work, we are now deploying the first release of HR data in the data warehouse. This includes both an import of historical data from the old systems and a feed from the new ones, with a mapping from the old data model to the new one.
Other items – We have more minor involvement in a few other projects, which we may report on from time to time.
It has been suggested to me that we consider posts that summarise a typical work week. I find this hard to do, partly because it can be difficult to pick out the parts of the week that will be most interesting, and partly because we often spend time talking to other people who may not want themselves mentioned on a public blog. Still, it can be good to stretch one’s comfort zone and I’ll keep this in mind as a possibility.