A message from the Chief Operating Officer, Dr Stephen Weller.
Making it easier for ACU staff to connect, share information and collaborate with each other across teams and campuses is a key focus for the University.
That’s why I’m pleased to announce our Digital Workspace program. It’s a major program of work led by the Information Technology Directorate, designed to deliver the digital tools and technologies we need to support a modern, flexible workforce. Digital tools that allow us all to connect securely, collaborate seamlessly and work smarter – no matter where we are or what device we are using.
What’s being delivered?
A better video conference experience A new Microsoft certified video conference room system is scheduled to be deployed in all non-teaching video conference meeting rooms by the end of this year. For the first time, it will introduce a standard, consistent and repeatable in-room video conference experience – regardless of whether participants connect from their desktop, laptop, mobile, or from outside the ACU environment.
The new equipment comes with digital room booking panels that show room availability and enable ad-hoc meetings to be scheduled. As each room is scheduled for upgrade, it will be necessary to remove the room from use for a short period. For updates, room schedules and training session information, visit the SharePoint Project site.
Windows 10 and Office 365 To provide a secure backbone for our digital workplace, IT have been working to ensure all ACU PCs and laptops are running the Windows 10 operating system. As well as increased security protection, Windows 10 provides access to Office 365 and the ability to work from anywhere – with cloud-based access to email, files and Office programs from any location and device. In the future we’ll move from using personal drives and network file shares to saving documents using Office 365’s OneDrive.
SharePoint Online migration As Microsoft support for our current SharePoint platform is ending soon, we’ll be migrating ACU’s 3,500 sites to SharePoint Online. The new SharePoint is accessible from anywhere (no VPN required), adapts to any device screen and has a vastly improved design - with standard content templates for creating visually appealing content. IT has recently moved to SharePoint Online and migration planning is underway with the Office of Planning and Strategic Management, Faculty of Theology and Philosophy, Faculty of Education and Arts and Faculty of Health Sciences.
Teams and productivity toolsMicrosoft Teams is at the centre of the Digital Workspace. It’s the collaboration tool that includes chat, video meetings, file sharing and apps that help you get things done. To begin phasing it in, we’ve recently deployed chat and video conferencing on all desktops. We’ve also released the MyAnalytics tool that provides insights and tips on building better work habits.
I’m looking forward to the technology improvements the Digital Workplace program will bring, and the collaboration benefits it promises to provide ACU staff. For more information and updates on the Digital Workspace program visit the IT SharePoint site.