For college students out there, winter break is that awesome of time of the year in which they can “break” (pun intended) free from classes and studying for tests and don’t have to open a book until mid January, unless they want to of course. This year, while these youngsters are enjoying life or even traveling to exotic destinations, the University of Wisconsin-Madison is deeply engulfed in its duties to transition the campus over to the robust Office 365 platform.
After looking at options to improve e-mail and calendaring capabilities, the Administrative Excellence initiative’s Email and Calendaring Team initially decided earlier this year that Office 365 was the best suite for the university’s individual needs which range from functional, technical and date security requirements, all the way to Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act requirements.
The project is currently underway and Provost Paul M. DeLuca Jr. revealed he is expecting the implementation of the product to yield great results including driving communication amongst students, alumni, faculty and staff and improving efficiency within meeting planning.
"Streamlining and coordination of campus calendars will create efficiency and save staff time currently used to sync the many incompatible systems now in use," DeLuca said in a recent article. "At the same time, it makes sense to have everyone in the campus community operating from the same email program, generating economies of scale for the university and reducing the difficulties that arise from having disparate operating systems."
With estimates of reducing costs by nearly $11 million over five years by using Office 365, the first phase of the overall campus transitional project will consist of solely e-mail and calendar functions.
Campuses throughout the country are leveraging Office 365 at a pace faster than the holiday season is approaching us. Some of these institutes of higher learning include Duke University, Emory University, Thomas Jefferson University, the University of Iowa and the University of Iowa who all unanimously decided Office 365 was key to streamlining overall operations due to an array of factors including that it was Web-based, highly intuitive, very flexible and could adhere to rigorous mandates outlined by HIPAAA.
"A robust, reliable and secure e-mail system is vital to the daily operations of the university and health system," added Tracy Futhey, vice president of Information Technology and chief information officer, Duke University.
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Edited by Amanda Ciccatelli