2017 – Year in Tech Review

2017 has been a year for modernizing IT services at the university. With a focus on digital optimization, data and ease of use, WashU IT has delivered services that meet the emerging expectations of the user community. Take a look at some of the IT highlights.

WUSM VoIP – The project to replace the Medical School campus analog telecommunications system with a modern digital voice over IP (VoIP) system was completed this year! The new VoIP communication service replaced the aging analog service, provides increased features and the capability for more economical voice services in the future. The project launched in 2015 and, even with an expanded scope, was finished on time and under budget! In total 6,500 phones were migrated, 570 network switches were upgraded and 47 buildings on the medical campus were converted.

  • 6500 phones migrated
  • 90% of WUSM on VoIP
  • 570 network switches upgraded
  • 47 buildings converted
  • on time; under budget

Learn more about the service here.

Danforth VoIP – The project to replace the aging analog telecommunications system on the Danforth campus kicked off in 2017. The analog system, at the end of its lifecycle, is being replaced with a modern digital voice over IP (VoIP) system. The service includes VoIP phones with modern features such as voicemail to email, single number reach, call line transfer and more. Since launch, 13% of the Danforth campus phones have been replaced. Migration is scheduled for completion in August 2019.

  • Migrated users:
    • The Brown School
    • Investments
    • EUS
    • Athletics
    • Olin Business School
    • Platform Engineering
    • Enterprise Engineering
    • Telecommunications

Learn more about the service here.

Shared IT Services Deployment – When the Office of the CIO announced the plan to restructure the central IT organization and design, cost then deliver new common IT services to the university back in 2014, the WashU community provided feedback to help guide the design and deployment. Fast forward to 2017 and WashU IT is deploying the BIT Bundle of shared IT services to the university community, providing standardized, common IT services to users allowing local IT to focus on delivering services unique to their school or department.

The first major win of the delivery was completion of the project to migrate all university users to Microsoft Office 365, providing consistency in email, calendaring and collaboration across the university. To date, 2,080 workstations have been migrated to the new BIT bundle service and 140 servers have been migrated to the shared integrated infrastructure platform which provides reliable, scalable, secure networking and storage for the university.

Learn more about the service here.

ONE – In March, WashU IT introduced the campus to a Swiss army knife of a portal with ONE.wustl (ONE). The ONE service aggregates quick links to key university services and applications to help users quickly find and access systems such as WUSTL Box, Bear Bucks, Blackboard and time reporting in HRMS. The system also provides quick links to information like the WUSM food truck row and café menus. The single-click and single-sign-on access, robust search capability and app-like user interface is why many are making ONE their browser’s homepage.

Learn more about the service here.

Slate – In July, Undergraduate Admissions and WashU IT celebrated the launch of Slate, a vended cloud application that replaced WashU’s aging, in-house developed student admissions application. Slate enables a modern, easy user experience with features and functionality associated with contemporary admissions processes.

The Slate implementation is a priority project sponsored by Provost Holden Thorp and is aligned with the Administrative Systems Replacement Roadmap It is a collaboration of Undergraduate Admissions, their campus partners (the Office of the Registrar, Student Financial Services, Residential Life, the Danforth Schools), and WashU IT.

Research Infrastructure Services – The university’s major investment in research, with the launch of the Institute for Informatics in 2016, exhibited a commitment to secure WashU’s position as a leading research university aimed at recruiting the world’s top researchers and obtaining highly-sought projects and grant funding. In June, the Office of the CIO and the Office of the Vice Chancellor for Research announced the formation of the Research Infrastructure Services (RIS) organization which will build the university’s common research IT service capabilities to support researchers across campuses. With services such as the WashU Research Network (WURN), research storage (coming soon), and several to be announced in early 2018, RIS is focused on provided infrastructure services that remove the burden of storage, high speed network access, data management and more from the university research community.

Learn more about RIS here.

Microsoft Teams – In July, WashU IT added new ways to facilitate collaboration with the release of Microsoft Teams to the Microsoft Office 365 suite of services. Teams is a chat-centered workspace that enables collaboration with files, email and chat conversation tools, giving everyone instant access to everything they need to be ‘in-the-know’.

Learn more about Microsoft Teams here.

WashU 2FA+ – Faculty and staff should already be familiar with WashU 2FA, the two-factor authentication service that protects your WUSTL Key account from would-be cyber criminals. WashU 2FA is required for accessing HRMS and AISystem outside of the WashU network and when accessing the WashU CFU User VPN login portal from any network.

This year, the Information Security Office rolled out WashU 2FA+ which extends protection to most WUSTL Key-enabled sites such as ONE.wustl.edu, the Office 365 Outlook web app and Blackboard. Since launch, enrollment in WashU 2FA+ has been voluntary, however a mandatory enrollment is planned for 2018.

Learn more about WashU 2FA+ here.

Loaner Equipment – In 2017, WashU began offering encrypted loaner laptops (PC and Mac) for domestic and international travel. This service provides faculty and staff that have registered on the WashU Travel Registry site with a loaner laptop configured to access Office365, WUSTL Box, and remote access back to Washington University resources. This helps to protect university data in the case that a laptop is stolen, misplaced or seized during travel.

Learn more about the service here.