Siena College
Information Technology Services
Strategic Plan 2013 - 2016

Preamble

Information Technology Services (ITS) at Siena College supports nearly all the departments, centers, clubs, teams, and initiatives that collectively make up Siena College.  Informed by the Mission and current Strategic Plan of the institution, ITS has adopted the following Mission Statement:

Our Mission is to provide a robust technology infrastructure which supports and enhances the overall mission of Siena College. We recognize that technology is not just computers and we endeavor to provide the following:

  • A communications infrastructure that encourages sharing of information and ideas.
  • The resources, tools and services that support, enable and enhance teaching, learning, and research for both faculty and students.
  • A set of systems and applications that support the administrative functions of the college which provide the data needed to support informed decision-making.
  • People based support and assistance to enable everyone in the Siena community to take advantage of the resources we provide.

We strive to provide all of the above in a way that is stable, sound, and reliable, yet protects the integrity and security of data while ensuring appropriate access as needed by each member of the Siena community.

The college’s Strategic Plan, “Living our Tradition”, makes it clear that the focus of the college is on our students and the four planks of the plan are intended to ensure high levels of student engagement and the best possible student outcomes.

The ITS Strategic Plan is modeled on the institutional plan and is intended to focus the efforts of ITS on promoting and supporting the goals of Siena College.

Strategic Initiatives

  1. ITS will support the Academic Excellence Plan by enhancing support for Academic Technology.
  2. ITS will provide the most cost effective technologies and staff organizational structure.
  3. ITS will use all available resources to encourage diversity in the ITS staff. ITS will also provide technological resources which enhance a culture of diversity and encourage open communication within the Siena community.
  4. ITS will support the Athletics Department in promoting team accomplishments and in engaging external communities with Siena Athletics.

Implementation of the Strategic Plan for 2013

The ITS operational plan is based on the Strategic plan and addresses each initiative individually. The core of the operational plan is a matrix assigning operational elements to strategic initiatives.

It is important to place the plan in historical context. In 2006 the college adopted a strategic plan entitled The Academic Excellence Plan. In executing that plan it was felt that the Information Technology organization was focused on the administrative functions of the college and not placing adequate emphasis on the academic side of the institution. To change this focus and to provide a balanced approach to the delivery of technology services, it was decided to reorganize and renew the Information Technology department. Two decisions were key to this change: the reporting structure of Information Technology was changed so that the department reported to the VP for Academic Affairs rather than to Finance and Administration, and the title for the leader of the ITS department was changed from Director to Chief Information Officer (CIO) to reflect the campus-wide responsibilities of ITS.

To assist the college with this transition and to introduce the concept of a Chief Information Officer, SunGard Professional Services was engaged on a three year contract to reorganize and refocus ITS.  Under the contract SunGard provided a CIO, a Director of User Services, and a Director of Technical Services. This contract ran from 2008 through the fall of 2011. In November of 2011 Siena brought the information technology organization back to fully in-house with the hiring of a Siena employed CIO and empowered the new CIO to complete the reorganization of the department.

The new CIO spent the year of 2012 in assessment and initial restructuring of the ITS department and in building a new leadership team. In 2013 ITS began the development of a new strategic plan with the drafting of this document.  Given the current process of rebuilding and refocusing the ITS department and recognizing the need for input on technology needs from all facets of the Siena community, and in particular the academic departments, the operationalization of this new strategic plan will focus on information gathering while ensuring that there is a sound base in the infrastructure for delivery of technology services on campus. This is, in effect, a plan to create a strategic plan for ITS at Siena.

 

Initiative 1:            ITS will support the Academic Excellence Plan by enhancing support for Academic Technology.

 

Implementation

Benchmarks

1

ITS will solicit input from both faculty and students to determine technology needs and desires and associated priorities

An initial survey will be conducted in the Spring of 2013. In the Fall, a national survey instrument will be adopted, allowing benchmarking against other institutions.

2

ITS will support the implementation of a pilot project to introduce an ePortfolio system to support assessment of academics as well as to provide a vehicle for the showcasing of student accomplishments in the form of an online resume to be used in career development

In 2013 a joint task force of faculty and ITS staff will develop a pilot plan, choose vendors, and implement a pilot project resulting in the choice of an ePortfolio platform to be promoted campus-wide.

3

ITS will reorganize to focus staff resources on academic technology support.

At least one staff member will be hired with expertise and experience in the use of online technology in pedagogy. Staff will be hired or refocused to improve support for instructional technologies in the classroom.

4

Working with both Faculty and the Facilities Department, ITS will develop a 5 year plan for upgrading and maintaining classrooms.

At least a draft for this plan will be created in the first year. It will address both technology and furniture and have as a goal the standardization of classrooms so that a faculty member can walk into any classroom and feel comfortable operating the available technology and features.

4

ITS will focus on customer service and solicit input from the Siena community to determine what initiatives from ITS would best support the strategic goals of our patrons.

Survey results will be combined with feedback gathered in meetings with academic departments, chairs, and deans, as well as administrative departments, to inform a new strategic plan for ITS which will look forward three years from the time of writing. 

 

 

Initiative 2:            ITS will provide the most cost effective technologies and staff organizational structure.

 

Implementation

Benchmarks

1

All contracts and recurring purchases will be examined to ensure that the right things are being acquired at the best prices.

A combination of savings and new purchases will result in no net increase in expense in the ITS operational budget for FY14.

2

A thorough review of ITS structure and rewrite of all JDQs will be completed.

Rewritten JDQs will be submitted to HR and the Wage and Classification Committee will review all ITS JDQs.

 

 

Initiative 3:            ITS will use all available resources to encourage diversity in the ITS staff. ITS will also provide technological resources which enhance a culture of diversity and encourage open communication within the Siena community.

 

Implementation

Benchmarks

1

All new hiring processes beginning in the spring of 2013 will include a diversity recruitment plan.

Diversity Recruitment Plans will be submitted to and reviewed by Christine Hammill-Cregan.

 

 

Initiative 4:            ITS will support the Athletics Department in promoting team accomplishments and in engaging external communities with Siena Athletics.

 

Implementation

Benchmarks

1

ITS will work with SCIM to ensure optimal integration between the (in progress) new college website and the Athletics site provided by CBS Sports.

The new website will have a consistent look and feel and a seamless integration with the Athletics website.

2

ITS will work with Athletics to create a system to ensure athlete compliance with NCAA rules.

The existing site (created by Eric Breimer) will be brought on-campus as a virtual machine in our server farm and Administrative Computing will work with Athletics to determine requirements for a new system and begin implementation work.

3

ITS will engage with Athletics and Facilities on the budgeting for the MAAC renovations to ensure adequate consideration for IT and A/V requirements.

The budget established for the renovations will incorporate input from ITS and be adequate to cover the cost of systems identified as required.