Friday, 5 November 2010

Things that were, things that are, and things that might yet come to pass

First session this morning was from Heidi, the CISG chair with the above title, which the LOTR fans amongst you will recognise as a Galadriel quote.
In 30 mins she had a look back 10 years, looked to see what had changed since, and then used her crystal ball to look forward 10 years. As usual with most of my conference posts, these are the key points I noted down during the talk.

What was the world like in 2000?
Peak of the dot com bubble
Concorde crashed
Sydney olympics
Fuel protests

What was the HE business model
We wooed or selected students
Admitted them
Taught them
Examined them
Graduated them

We had just survived the y2k bug. Lots of in house systems replaced. Big investments. Move away from in house development
Lots of technology, but lots of business processes still very manual, on paper
Web technology there, but not interactive. Mainly static content. Difficult to get pages on the web, somebody to do it for you.
IT seen as essential, but not transformative.
IT governance, did it exist?
Budgets for IT c4% of turnover.
Staff numbers higher then, or lower? Mixed view from audience, probably about the same.
Good name check for Brian Kelly who was on the pulse. Lots of things he was looking at now come to pass.

Top UCISA concerns in 2005 (earliest data we have):
Network security
Strategic approach to infrastructure
Systems reliance and availability
Anytime anywhere
Learning support

All technology based.

What's changed politically?
Tuition fees for most of UK, students more demanding
Expansion of sector. 400000 more students than 10 years ago
League tables, big impact on how institutions behave and manage
Shared services agenda.

What's changed technically?
Pervasive wireless
Home broadband
Cloud based services
Smart mobile devices
Frameworks for ween developments
Self service via web
More systems to support ( and staff numbers haven't gone up)

What's not changed?
Business model
Core admin systems.
Appreciation of where IT can /cannot add value. Type 42 manager has still not materialized. Still focusing on technology, not business processes .

Current stat politically:
Huge pressure on HE funding. Outcome of Browne still not clear.
Pressure to share services or come up with different cheaper models very high. Should be focussing on different models of delivery.

Current state, technical:
Use of cloud/hosting commodity services growing
Full outsourcing of services under investigation to a limit extent
Apps for student related content delivery growing
Web based delivery now the norm
Business process review now a standard feature
Top concerns 2009 now have business systems and process improvement in top 5.

What will the world of CIS look like in 2020?
There'll have been evolution not revolution
All CIS applications will be delivered from the cloud
More use of discreet services delivered from cloud eg for invoice processing, payroll
Development and support of applications will be from staff in clusters of like minded institutions
Students will all have iPad type devices.

A great talk, made all the more remarkable as it was delivered at 9am after a very late bar session after the conference dinner!

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