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Recent Strategic IT Accountability Board Decisions

May 10, 2013

The Strategic IT Accountability Board (SITAB) met on Friday, April 26, 2013. The focus of the meeting was to discuss both the Mobile Strategy for campus and the Identity and Access Management Strategy, as well as receive updates on the Administrative Systems initiative and the Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) project.

Geoff Leavenworth, Chief Communications Officer, Office of the President; Mike Horn, Director of Digital Strategy, Office of the President; and Julienne VanDerZiel, Director, Information Technology Services (ITS) Applications, presented the mobile strategy and plan for creating a responsive web presence for the University. The vision is to create a leading, next generation digital experience for The University of Texas at Austin community. This experience will be optimized for mobile devices, personalized to our constituents, and socially engaging.

This summer, University Communications will retain an interactive design firm to create the look and feel of our new responsive web presence. “Responsive web design” refers to a layout and toolset that enables the visual elements in a web page to adapt to changes in the size and capabilities of the device being used, whether it be a tablet, mobile phone, laptop, or workstation. During the 2013-2014 fiscal year, outside resources will also be retained by ITS to help the Applications team create reusable technical templates and re-build the University’s core web pages. These templates will be offered in a managed Drupal environment available for other University organizations wanting to modernize their web presence, or units like the Texas Advanced Computing Center which provides websites supporting associated national research. The capital budget for the new web environment has already been approved by SITAB. Next fiscal year, ITS will request allocating about $1-1.2 million from the common good budget to rebuild the University’s core web pages. The committee unanimously endorsed the mobile strategy and plan for creating a responsive web presence.

C.W. Belcher, Senior IT Manager, ITS Applications, presented the Identity and Access Management Strategy. The strategy addresses the need to upgrade the University’s aging and rigid Identity and Access Management (IAM) infrastructure and provide easy-to-use online services for campus constituents, seamless integration with cloud services, and efficient provisioning and de-provisioning of access to campus systems. The strategy uses a set of common standards, which will help increase collaboration and make it easier for our research and other partners to validate credentials and access needed resources. The 2013-2014 fiscal year ITS budget requests allocating $1.4 million to address the initial set of critical functionality gaps. The committee unanimously endorsed the Identity and Access Management strategy.

President Powers observed that IT governance is working. Both strategies have been well thought out, and clearly reflect the input of the campus.

The committee also received updates on the Administrative Systems replacement process and the Voice over Internet Protocol project. UT System is being kept informed about the status and progress of the administrative systems replacement. The VoIP project is making timely and successful progress. The initial group of buildings, including portions of the College of Liberal Arts, have already made a seamless transition to VoIP.

Thanks to everyone across campus who has been involved in the challenging work of IT governance.

As this brief recap of the SITAB meeting demonstrates, IT at the University is making a real difference in the lives of students, faculty, and staff. If you want to lean more about how IT governance works, or check out prior agendas and minutes of the other committees, please visit:

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