SUNY Brockport Transforms IT Practices & Project Management
When the pandemic hit SUNY Brockport had to quickly shift gears to support remote learning and remote work. With TeamDynamix, they were able to meet the challenges of 2020 head-on.
SUNY Brockport had an old ITSM system that was cumbersome to use, prompting them to switch to an easy-to-use platform that meets their needs for an agile, low-code / no-code solution.
When the coronavirus pandemic forced colleges to shift suddenly to remote learning during the spring 2020 semester, IT staff at the State University of New York (SUNY) Brockport, quickly revised their institution’s service catalog — making it easier for staff and students to find critical support. Such a swift response never would have been possible with the IT service management platform the university was using before.
In 2019, SUNY Brockport switched to TeamDynamix because its old system was too cumbersome to use. “We wanted to be more timely and agile in making changes,” says Director of Information Technology Services Stephen Cook. Cook and his colleagues are glad they made the switch. With TeamDynamix, SUNY Brockport now has a service management platform that’s easier for both IT employees and end-users alike, a no-code solution that doesn’t require much overhead to manage — backed by a company that is a full partner in the university’s success.
Reducing Complexity and Overhead
With SUNY Brockport’s old IT service management system, changes to the service catalog and to workflows and permissions had to be programmed. Integration with third-party software tools required the university to hire an outside consultant. Even the end-user interface was complicated, making it hard for users to check on the status of service requests. “When we looked at our costs over time, we realized we were spending the equivalent of an entire full-time employee just managing our old system and making changes as needed,” Cook says.
In searching for alternatives, SUNY Brockport discovered that TeamDynamix would cost less to license and operate over time. “We realized our ‘super’ users could actually make changes quickly for themselves because it’s more agile, with a graphical user interface,” he says. “That would allow us to make changes on the fly.” As a testament to the system’s ease of use, implementation began in April 2019 with a team of four people. By July 1, SUNY Brockport had completed Phase 1 of the implementation process, which included launching the ticketing system, service portal, and knowledge base. “We had a service catalog and knowledge base already, but we had to recreate these within TeamDynamix,” Cook says. “We did all of that in less than three months.”
We realized our ‘super’ users could actually make changes quickly for themselves because it’s more agile, with a graphical user interface.
In-house Implementation Services are Real Experts
The implementation team had plenty of help during the rollout process. “TeamDynamix has been a close partner since Day One,” Cook says. “They had somebody walking us through the process the entire time.” This assistance has continued beyond the initial rollout. Since launching the platform in summer 2019, SUNY Brockport has added asset, change, and project management capabilities as well. “We have worked with TeamDynamix consistently throughout this process,” Cook observes. “Whenever we’ve had a question, TeamDynamix consultants have helped us come up with a solution that would work best for our situation.”
One example is how the university has implemented project management. “The project management piece was a little overwhelming for us because we don’t have a formal project management office. So, we wanted to simplify our project intake process,” says IT Service Desk Manager Krystal Perlman. “Our TeamDynamix implementation consultant suggested that we do this with a ticket instead of a project request, and then convert that ticket into a project. That way, we don’t have to manage a risk matrix and other pieces that go into a project request. It’s a much simpler process for a smaller shop like ours.”
‘A really nice system’
Using the solution’s no-code platform and out-of-the-box connectors to common applications, IT staff at SUNY Brockport have easily been able to integrate TeamDynamix with third-party software for themselves, says Assistant Director of Technology Support Services Tanasee Conner — such as Bomgar Remote Support. Tech support technicians have found TeamDynamix easy to use as well. “We have a number of student employees who help us provide tech support,” Perlman says.
“I’ve found that it’s easier for me to train our students to create a ticket for every single call like they’re supposed to because the system is just easier for them to use — and we’ve had a higher percentage of calls that have become service tickets as a result.” Even students, faculty, and other stakeholders have found the platform simpler to use. “More people are putting in their own service requests within the TeamDynamix portal,” Perlman says. “That speaks to its usability from an end user’s perspective.” Adds Cook: “It’s much easier for people to log in and see the status of their service requests. Within the first few months of implementing TeamDynamix, we had people around campus telling us: ‘This is a really nice system.’”
Improving Business Processes
Making changes is much simpler as well, as IT staff did when COVID-19 forced the university to move operations online. “When it was announced by the governor that we were going remote, that night I spent a few hours updating the service portal,” Perlman says. “We made some visual changes to our service portal to make items required for remote learning easier to find. We also created a specific knowledge base category on resources for going remote, and we put two new services online for people to request hardware or software. I never would have been able to make those changes so quickly with our old system.”
Because TeamDynamix is so easy to use, it’s transforming the delivery of IT service at SUNY Brockport. “Reporting is a lot easier now,” Conner notes. “We can run reports showing how much time was spent on projects and tickets, and we’re using that information to improve our practice.” “We’re revisiting our business processes on the fly, which is improving our service,” Cook concludes. “TeamDynamix allows us to do that. We couldn’t do any of the things we do now with our old system without a significant increase in time and resources.”
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