As the providers of Information Technology (IT) services at UB, we are interested in better understanding and improving the quality of the IT services we provide. To this end, as some of you who participated in our TechQual+ survey already know, we recently undertook an extensive survey of students, faculty, and staff.
The Higher Education TechQual+ Project
As a cooperative initiative of member institutions, TechQual+ provides IT leaders with the tools to assess, analyze and report on the effectiveness of technology services. The TechQual+ survey assesses objectively the key performance indicators that reflect high quality technology outcomes. The TechQual+ core survey contains 12 items designed to measure the performance along three core service vectors:
An added benefit of the TechQual+ Project is the comparative data made available by peer institutions. UB data can be compared to other institutions of the same “Carnegie Class." With this comparison, we can find out how we’re doing compared to other colleges and universities.
UB’s TechQual+ 2012 Survey
CIT initiated the UB TechQual+ project during the spring of 2012. More than 9,000 UB faculty, staff and students were selected at random and invited to participate in the survey, answering the 12 items and providing open-ended comments to improve services. In addition, IT support staff, number over 400 individuals at UB, were asked to participate. The end result is that 2,082 individuals participated, a return rate of just over 23%.
UB Faculty and Staff Key Findings
Faculty and staff expressed, on average that perceived levels of service did not exceed minimum expectations (where the green bar is below the red bar) on:
Themes from faculty and staff comments illustrate some of the deficiencies:
Ratings and suggestions from faculty and staff reveal that they are genuinely looking for more and improved IT services in order to excel in their roles. The sentiment most negatively expressed by faculty and staff is their desire to have consistent access to classroom technology in all teaching and learning spaces regardless of space ownership.
For both faculty and staff, there is a strong desire to have easy access to official university information through the web, with an emphasis on that information being timely and accurate. Some negative sentiment for UB’s web information could also be due to dissatisfaction with the changes involved with the introduction of HUB, and their struggle with understanding how to proceed with their work using the new system.
Faculty and staff truly appreciate the efforts and assistance provided by IT supports staff. They want more access to IT staff expertise directly, and especially clear communication regarding IT matters that affect them.
When comparing UB’s combined data to the combined data from other institutions of the similar Carnegie Class, UB’s performance profile is nearly identical. UB, like our peers, is challenged with the same issues of size, technical complexity and breadth. UB’s similarity provides validity that our IT services reflect current, mainstream operations, and effectively address the appropriate issues. UB compares favorably on networking and connectivity, with Wi-Fi provisioning better than our peers, access to technology for teaching and collaboration, and the effectiveness of IT support. We can improve the organization of our websites and online services, to which our faculty and staff concur, and improve how information about IT services and facilities is communicated to campus audiences.
Assessing performance effectiveness is the first step in the improvement process. UB’s IT leadership is already taking action to address the issues revealed by the TechQual+ process, with some new initiatives already underway:
Want to know more?
A complete UB TechQual+ 2012 Report, including analyzes of IT staff and UB student data and much more, is available at:
VITEC Solutions services both personal and department-owned computers and iProduct devices; visit their drop-off depot in the Lockwood 2nd Floor Cybrary or call 800-333-1075. You can also request office pick-up for UB-owned equipment. Track your repair status.
UB’s top-level website, Buffalo.edu, was recently given the gold award in the 2012 Circle of Excellence competition sponsored by the Council for the Advancement and Support of Education. CIT was a key partner in the development of the underlying CMS system.
Computing and Information Technology at UB is more than 40 years
old. Here’s a look back at the Interface
newsletter from June 1970. (Please note: this PDF file includes
perturbations natural to the duplication process at the