In 2016, the Provost commissioned Accenture to produce an assessment of the university’s IT capabilities. Among its findings, Accenture identified a wider distribution of IT organizations at UofSC compared to industry averages, with the majority of IT effort expended on end-user support, application development, and infrastructure support. This distribution of effort resulted in inefficiencies, and a lack of ability to provide novel IT capabilities. Accenture recommended reevaluating the university’s IT service model.
Vice President for IT and Chief Information Officer Doug Foster joined the university in 2017. Shortly thereafter, he established IT’s five strategic priorities to target the university’s opportunities for IT improvement. Through the fourth priority, “Establish a best-in-class service delivery model,” UofSC has seen a number of improvements, such as the implementation of the sc.edu/ithelp IT service management platform and the “unITe” integrated service desk.
In June 2020, the Board of Trustees approved a transformative project to further establish a best-in-class service delivery model for IT at the university: IT Optimization. This collaborative effort was approved to enable new and improved information technology capabilities for the Columbia campus. To do this, a collaborative team of DoIT and departmental IT leadership are working together to unite IT efforts and create a new IT organization that can support the entire Columbia campus.
UofSC IT is that new organization. Under Doug Foster’s leadership, departmental and division IT staff on the Columbia campus will be reorganized into the UofSC IT by 2022. This transition will begin with the combination of the IT staff from the College of Arts and Science and the DoIT in 2021. Beginning on this date, both previously-separate organizations will be UofSC IT.
As additional IT teams merge to form UofSC IT, their people, processes, and technology will be optimized into a support model that can provide a world-class standard of IT services while also enabling new IT capabilities for the UofSC students, faculty, and staff throughout the Columbia Campus. This process is happening without a reduction of IT staff or budget, and does not imply a “centralization” or “consolidation” of IT staff into the existing DoIT model of IT support.
“When all IT partners across the Columbia campus come together as UofSC IT, we will not only be able to address the immediate and long-term needs of our students, faculty, and staff, but we will be able to offer IT services that were not available in the past. Our impact will be greater, and our reach will go further. The value IT provides to the University of South Carolina will continue to grow and evolve.”
-VP for Information Technology Doug Foster