Distributed Technology Support
The Information Technology Department has worked to encourage the establishment and growth of technology on campus regardless of the source. In most instances, success has been achieved, largely due to peripheral expertise and/or an understanding of the need to involve Information Technology before a technological resource finds its way into existence. There is concern for the potential for disappointment and frustration regarding the support that can be provided by Information Technology for distributed technology as such technology becomes increasingly necessary and commonplace. Such concern is predicated on a number of issues including but not limited to the type of technology that is to be distributed, the timeline for its installation and maintenance, the budgetary requirements for supporting the technology, and the staffing levels necessary to provide the necessary or desired levels of support. This policy, developed in consultation with the campus-wide Information Technology Advisory Committee, describes the mechanism by which individuals or departments interested in establishing distributed technology resources can seek the support of the Information Technology Division. The objective is to allow the College to better plan, renew and grow its considerable investment in technology, as well as to allow for better support and maintenance of the integrity of that investment.
For the purposes of this document, “distributed technology” consists of technological resources that are created through funding and effort from sources outside of the College’s Information Technology Division. Some examples of such technology would be:
- Departmental computer laboratories, often wholly or partially funded by grants, dedicated and reserved as curricular enhancements in a particular academic department or division.
- Operational support systems, such as campus building access control, a scheduling package and budget management package, that are often accompanied by complicated implementation and support issues.
- Faculty research computing hardware, often residing in faculty offices or labs and often running specialized software that is difficult to support.
Individuals or departments wishing to establish distributed technology resources must contact the Chief Information Officer prior to submitting a request for such resources to either College or outside sources of funding or other organizations that can provide the resources. The requestor should be prepared to provide an itemized list describing:
- Technology that is desired.
- Intended on-campus and/or off-campus audience that will use the technology.
- Location(s) where the technology will be installed and/or used.
- Impact, if any, that such technology will have on existing technology resources of the College (such as impact on network traffic and server utilization).
- Support and/or maintenance required from the Information Technology Division.
The Chief Information Officer will work in cooperation with the requestor, other members of the Information Technology staff, and other members of the College to draft a support document that will detail the amount and type of support that can be provided by Information Technology. There should be no expectation on the part of the requestor for support that exceeds and/or differs from that which will be described in the support document. In the event that Information Technology will be unable to meet the support needs of the distributed technology, the Chief Information Officer working in cooperation with the requestor, other members of the Information Technology staff, and other members of the College will draft a document that outlines the costs that will be necessary to adequately support the technology. The requestor can then use this document in an effort to secure the level of funding necessary.