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So that's it for it services, or is it?


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A "farewell" presentation given to the HEWIT Symposium at Gregynog, June 2010

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So that's it for it services, or is it?

  1. 1. 2010 … so that’s it for IT Services … or is it?<br />David Harrison<br />Cardiff University<br />
  2. 2. Agenda<br />What’s been happening “out there” in Web 2.0 world?<br />IT Services’ “burning platform”<br />A new dawn awaits – new strategic directions<br />Concluding thoughts<br />
  3. 3. Disclaimer<br />Everything I’m saying is informed by my employment at Cardiff and the networks I’ve been part of and have involved myself in whether real (ie UCISA) or virtual (egFacebook).<br />Everything I’m saying is a personal view or reflection upon what I’ve learnt or experienced, unless directly attributed to another person or organisation.<br />I’m wholly responsible for the contents of this session; it does not represent the views or policies of either Cardiff University or any other body I’ve been involved with.<br />
  4. 4. Why the need for a disclaimer?<br />Talking sometimes about things outside the “service offering”.<br />Talking about things from a “user-centric” rather than “organisation-centric” point of view.<br />Talking about issues that transcend organisational boundaries.<br />Talking about issues that break the traditional security and privacy models.<br />Talking about different ways of visualising the way Information Services operate.<br />… none of which have any substance in standards, services, or policies … yet!<br />
  5. 5. Personal Web 2.0 Use<br />Documented (September 2009) in my contribution to the “Shared Infrastructure Services Landscape Study”, to be found here <br /><br />Multiple blogs, public and private twitter identities, contributor to many collaborative workspaces … work, social, voluntary<br />Experimenter with geo-location<br />
  6. 6. In Cardiff it’s been “Core and chore”<br />
  7. 7. “Core and chore” on the road in 2009<br />Joe’s talk to IWMW 2009<br /> (video available … allegedly)<br />My talk at EUNIS 2009 (with paper)<br /><br />
  8. 8. The Edgeless University<br />A perfect storm – economic crisis, user paying for HE - current way of working not sustainable<br />Could be a time for re-birth – open access and online tools offer the means of survival<br />Growing world of informal learning<br />Commitment to openness and collaboration<br />Technology is both a solution and a means to shape the future<br /><br />
  9. 9. … and there’s CLEX<br /> “In terms of the role of an IT Department in a Web 2.0 world there was general agreement that we need to become facilitators - of people using services which we might not be providing, on a multitude of devices. We also need to be educators - trusted to give advice on technologies and accepting that we will have to listen much more to our users.<br /> We need to make sure our infrastructure is robust, resilient and scalable for these technologies to become usable and ubiquitous. For example our wireless network is already struggling to cope with current load.<br /> We need to engage and use the technology if we are going to support and help students - but even if we use it, are we going to use it the way that the current generation of teenagers will? And if not, what do we do - employ students?”<br /> Chris Sexton:<br />
  10. 10. Higher Education in a Web 2.0 World<br />HE will never be the same again<br />Conflict between the old and the new<br />Impetus for change will come from the students<br />Mediation, mentoring, partnership in the learning process<br />Need to enable informed choice in the matter of tools and support them<br /><br />
  11. 11. The Horizon Report: 2010<br />Key Trends<br />Abundance of resources<br />“Martini” working<br />Cloud-based technologies<br />Collaboration is king<br />Critical challenges<br />Role of the institution is changing<br />New models of scholarly endeavour are emerging slowly, but metrics for evaluation lag behind<br />Digital media literacy continues to rise in importance<br />Institutions tend to focus more on key goals when budgets are shrinking<br />Technologies to watch<br />Mobile computing, open content<br />Electronic books, simple augmented reality<br />Gesture-based computing, visual data analysis<br /><br />
  12. 12. Ten Principles for the Future of Learning<br />Self-Learning<br />Horizontal Structures<br />From Presumed Authority to Collective Credibility<br />A De-Centered Pedagogy<br />Networked Learning<br />Open Source Education<br />Learning as Connectivity and Interactivity<br />Lifelong Learning<br />Learning Institutions as Mobilizing Networks<br />Flexible Scalability and Simulation<br /><br />
  13. 13. We’re doomed<br /> “It’s not just the IT Services department that needs to do the navel-gazing; all service departments have to re-invent themselves, focus on the differentiating activity that they do that adds value to the organisation, and they all need to start looking more holistically towards their service offering from the customer’s perspective. They want assistance with tasks, not the provision of more tools, systems or processes. The silos need to be broken down. The one-stop shop for student services (remember that?) is the tip of an iceberg – and have we developed things more since then?<br /> So where does that leave the “services” that IT offers? Well, imho, it means that they have to add value over and above that which can be delivered from the cloud. Decisions have to be made on those services which are little more than utilities, from those that differentiate the service proposition to be one that’s “special”. Moreover, differentiation can be achieved by rationalising the collective service offering. Barriers have to come down. Silos have to crumble. BPM and lean thinking has to sweep through the organisation and common sense has to break out. Not much to ask for then .<br /> David Harrison:<br />
  14. 14. The web 2.0 university<br /> “There is a little doubt in my mind that Web 2.0 will eventually change everything in respect of university education. We have said the same about online learning (VLEs) and access to eResources in the past, but what makes the current situation different is the emergence of communication and collaboration tools that easily and transparently transcend the organisation. With emergence also of Federated Access Management as well you then have a mechanism for federated universities and federated learning.<br /> In other words key infrastructural elements are falling into place which provide the means to deliver true open learning and allow the institutions which are fast of foot to establish brands to take advantage of this convergence of capabilities.<br /> The Web 2.0 university will be one therefore that consumes, collaborates and communicates - some are better placed to build such a model, others not. The current economic crisis will throw up the new generation and others may not survive as the value they will add will be much less.”<br /> David Harrison commenting on:<br />
  15. 15. Some strategic thinking<br />Your thoughts and comments will be invited – this is the interactive bit – you will collaborate!<br />I’ll be asking questions and I hope you’ll be open enough to answer.<br />Forget your boss is sitting beside you – you may not be as alone as you thought!<br />
  16. 16. 1. What kind of IT Service?<br />Envisioning, engagement, enablement and EDUCATION<br />Operating across service department silos<br />Focussing on processes not systems<br />Returning real operating value to the user who is task-focussed<br />And how is support provided?<br />
  17. 17. Support Models (from Gartner)(Chris Sexton, Sheffield)<br />Control orientated<br />Choice orientated<br />Innovation orientated<br />Hands off<br />
  18. 18. Control orientated<br />Institution specifies device<br />Institution owns device<br />Owns applications<br />Fully supported<br />
  19. 19. Choice orientated<br />Goal is user satisfaction<br />User chooses device<br />Focus on protocols<br />Fewer services<br />Less support<br />
  20. 20. Innovation orientated<br />Empower users to innovate<br />Little direct support<br />Can influence<br />Advise but not enforce<br />
  21. 21. Hands off<br />Take as little responsibility as possible<br />Security and control are zero<br />Apps/services might work, they might not<br />
  22. 22. Which one are you?<br />Do you have “control” tendancies, or are you “hands off”?<br />Which model is best suited to the next generation of users?<br />Which one do you aspire to work in?<br />
  23. 23. 2. Mobility, mobility, mobility<br />The user has portable mobile computers at their disposal and they’re not laptops<br />Even the CEO wants an iPhone rather than a BlackBerry?<br />Form a tidy queue for your iPad or v4.0 iPhone<br />“There’s an app for that …” – just explain the security model, don’t try a one-size fits all!<br />
  24. 24. 3. Open Source as a Shared Service<br />Open source your time has come … again<br />Shared services are a little bit scary; ceding “control” to someone else – but it makes sense for utility computing – payroll, VLE, etc<br />Plethora of devices, plethora of back-end applications, need for middleware, need for APIs and device drivers, need for device apps<br />Flexible Service Delivery – modules of code, SOA, a swapshop/exchange<br />Back to our roots – collaboration is the key; in HE we have the potential to do this <br />
  25. 25. 4. Strategic Federated Access Management<br />If you want “open content” and “networked learning” then FAM (and credible IDMan) must be built into your virtual infrastructure.<br />These are the what I get from the Reports mentioned earlier.<br />It allows you to move into the federated learning space.<br />It’s a thinking thing more than a technological thing – it’s strategic; it points towards the future of your institution – perhaps even its very survival.<br />
  26. 26. 5. Collaboration software<br />First-of-all THIS IS ESSENTIAL!!!<br />Doesn’t matter what it is – Sharepoint, Connections, Ning or Jive – you just need to have it. <br />You don’t need to host it – indeed outside the corporate firewall might be better – if you can’t get it shibbolised.<br />Mustn’t be a “walled garden” however; must be able to work with all the other social media tools be able to accommodate OpenSocial, OpenID (or FAM), because a university is not a “walled garden”<br />
  27. 27. 6. The workstation and the desktop image<br />Overdue for review; hybrid models need to develop – more than one image<br />Concentration on thin-client to deliver corporate apps through web services often<br />Only locked-down images for administrators<br />Researchers get a skinny image with admin rights to their machines – so that they DON’T need to buy a Mac!<br />
  28. 28. 7. In the cloud<br />Your first point of investigation for any utility (ie non-differentiating) application<br />Implementation times fall dramatically<br />New technologies introduced faster<br />More widely accessible; filestore too!<br />Support model changes (see above)<br />The “new” transferrable skills (Google Apps or Live@Edu) for students<br />
  29. 29. 8. Buying some time<br />A lag between the present and the need to face budget cuts in the future – what are you going to do with that time?<br />Prioritisation is paramount<br />Cost-cutting or technology co-habitation?<br />What “utility computing” do you do that you could move to the cloud?<br />Need for breathing space – scenario planning<br />
  30. 30. Concluding thoughts - enablement<br />The central IT service needs to focus upon business requirements– what the user wants, not what the service provides<br />Focus shifts to Services and the Front Office (and away from Technology and the Back Office)<br />The Service Desk becomes a focal point for service delivery, and a major corporate system <br />Requirements gathering and recordingis essential and becomes part of the engagement process<br />Solutions generation through incorporating innovation – enablement not development – what’s available “out there” for free (hopefully); NOT we’ll see what we can do internally<br />
  31. 31. Concluding thoughts - partnership<br />Consultancy form of working with Schools and Divisions – away from the central service catalogue and more a shared “catalogue” where we learn from what the users are doing as much as they benefit from what we provide in services<br />Partnership ethos - producing solutions “with the user” rather than “for the user”<br />Emphasis on education rather than training, with the context becoming far more important<br />Embedding new ways of working through Information Literacy++<br />
  32. 32. Concluding thoughts – cultural change<br />Get the “need to change” on the agenda at every opportunity. Organise seminars around the reports I’ve mentioned. <br />Foster attitudes and adopt practices that enable good ideas to progress from inception to implementation<br />Encourage “can do” and “yes of course” ways of thinking<br />Encourage social networks and personal profiles to create new communities of knowledge and understanding to emerge and grow – especially within the organisation<br />Remove barriers to uptake of new tools, but provide clear guidance on what is appropriate use<br />Consider the impact upon work-life balance policies – it can be both liberating and enslaving. We’re not all the same!<br />
  33. 33. Final concluding thoughts<br />Web 2.0 and mobile computing provides a framework for a re-modelling of our work and social lives. Things will never be the same again.<br />Users need protecting against their own foolishness – thus the impotance of EDUCATION cannot be underplayed<br />Institutions should begin to trust their staff and students more but be also prepared to use existing disciplinary codes where the trust is betrayed<br />Must embrace and engage – to do otherwise would be counter-productive and make us look foolish – consider how enablement would work for you<br />Should consider how a partnership model rather than service provider role would work for you, and be customer-centric<br />Must consider where we’re going with work-life balance; for some they want separation – for others they want the flexibility at work that they give to work at home.<br />