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Steve Corbató: UITL retreat report

This summer I met with many of you during UIT’s town hall meetings to talk about the current state of UIT and engage in question-and-answer dialogue with you. I want to thank you again for attending and voicing your observations, questions and ideas. As I mentioned in those gatherings, while I’m serving as Interim CIO I plan to continue the dialog and keep you updated about UIT’s progress. To that end, I’d like to share some outcomes from the August UIT Leadership planning retreat. 

The leadership team made some important decisions and identified specific goals:

Professional development. We’re committed to developing, empowering, and engaging UIT employees at all levels and across the organization. HR Assistant Vice President Mary Anne Berzins joined us for part of the day to facilitate a discussion regarding options for a professional development program for UIT employees. As a first step, we decided the initial focus will be on developing a plan for mid-level manager professional development and management training. Expect to hear more about this initiative in the next couple of months.

UIT strategic plan. We will create a UIT strategic plan this year, aligning as closely as possible with other planning efforts around campus, including that of the Marriott Library. Part of our strategic plan will address the overall University IT ecosystem so that we continue to keep the needs of our customers and campus partners at the forefront.

Refocused commitment to service management and ITIL. To continuously improve and modernize the services we provide to the University, we need to strengthen our programmatic approach to service management and our deployment of the ServiceNow platform. We’ve convened a service management stakeholder group that will evaluate the current state of service management and develop a plan for the next steps, with a special emphasis on process analysis/improvement and using ITIL as a framework. The group has already met and prioritized several aspects of service management for immediate attention.

Fresh perspectives in UITL. Taking stock of the team, we noted that of 11 UITL members, seven have been on the team for a year or less, with three coming on board just this summer. The newly-configured group will build upon the culture of trust and mutual accountability within the team, and is empowered to bring their collective experiences and leadership strengths to bear as we press ahead in these next few months. The UITL team members are Dan Bowden, Tom Cheatham, Rene Eborn, Mike Ekstrom, Dave Huth, Lisa Kuhn, Caprice Post, Debbie Rakhsha, Jon Thomas, Cassandra Van Buren, and me.

We’ve just begun a new academic year, and I hope that you share the feelings of anticipation, excitement, and hope that students, faculty, and our fellow staff members are experiencing. I truly appreciate the ways you work intelligently, efficiently, and diligently to meet and exceed the expectations of both our customers and our colleagues within UIT – thank you.

Last Updated: 4/13/21