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Information Technology Transformation

IT Transformation Continues to Move Forward

The UB 2020 IT Transformation Phase II process is continuing to move forward through a new partnership between the College of Arts and Sciences (CAS), the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences (SEAS), and the Office of the CIO.

The UB 2020 IT Transformation Phase II process is continuing to move forward through a new partnership between the College of Arts and Sciences (CAS), the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences (SEAS), and the Office of the CIO.

The two primary IT support organizations in CAS and SEAS – CASet and SENS, respectively will form a consolidated IT support organization (“supernode”). The combined organization will ensure that the resources and services they provide to CAS and SEAS faculty, staff, and students continue at least at their current levels despite ongoing fiscal challenges.

Peter Rittner, the CAS Assistant Dean for Educational Technology, will lead the new “supernode”. Rittner will work closely with David Yearke, Director of SENS. Their reporting relationships in CAS and SEAS will remain unchanged. Mr. Rittner will additionally report to the CIO. He and Mr. Yearke will continually consult with and seek guidance from the deans and faculties of CAS and SEAS. CASet and SENS staff members will continue to work for CAS and SEAS, as they now do.

Motivation for Consolidation

By collaboratively deploying their staff, expertise, and infrastructure to meet the needs of their constituencies, CASet and SENS expect to maintain and improve their quality of service while seeking better and more efficient ways to do their work.

It is anticipated that this partnership, which was achieved through the leadership of Provost Satish Tripathi, Dean Bruce McCombe of the College of Arts and Science, Dean Harvey Stenger of the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences, and Interim CIO Thomas Furlani, will serve as a model for future transformations between the nodes and the central IT organization.

Transformation History

Since 1997 the University at Buffalo has used an information technology (IT) support model comprised of a centralized organization and distributed organizations, commonly known as “nodes,” which reside within the decanal units they serve.

The central organization, CIT, provides services for the University as a whole, achieving economies of scale and addressing widespread needs. The local organizations provide services tailored for the colleges and schools, departments, research groups, and administrative areas they support.

In recent years, UB’s 2020 IT Transformation has sought, where possible, to consolidate redundant and common IT services throughout the University to achieve greater economies, while ensuring that the unique needs of each node’s constituency continue to be met.

One example is email consolidation, where significant cost savings have been realized while simultaneously improving the uniformity and security of email service across campus.

Prior to the consolidation, some of the nodes maintained their own email servers, which overall required substantial investments in personnel and hardware. Today, this service is provided by CIT, thereby freeing up time for node staff to work in other areas beneficial to the units they support.

Provost Tripathi announces the formation of a new information and library services/CIO organization.

See the announcement in the April 28, 2010 Reporter for further details