Tag Archives: Governance

IGNITE Expo mission – to network

Tristian O’Brien
SharePoint Technical Specialist
University of Brighton

Microsoft IGNITE Expo 2017

Tristian O’Brien was funded to attend this event as a 2017 UCISA bursary winner

Mission today, is to network and try to get the low down on some issues that my team and I are interested in.  This means that we go to various Expo stands and talk with vendors such as ShareGate, Microsoft, Zerto and take demos from SPorganizer amongst others:

  • what’s the throttling situation in Office365?
  • approaches in Microsoft Teams governance
  • but more importantly, collect swag such as SharePoint socks the team are gonna love these.

This blog post first appeared on http://blogs.brighton.ac.uk/tristianobrien/

Interested in finding out more about a UCISA bursary, then visit UCISA Bursary Scheme.

Preparation for Microsoft IGNITE

Tristian O’Brien
SharePoint Technical Specialist
University of Brighton

Tristian O’Brien was funded to attend this event as a 2017 UCISA bursary winner

I have been lucky enough to be awarded a bursary for travel and costs for travel and costs for Microsoft IGNITE courtesy of UCISA.  Moreover, I have been invited to sessions to contribute to the roadmap of SharePoint and OneDrive.

I have asked colleagues at the University of Brighton on their views and thoughts.  A couple of significant questions we’d like some insight on are:

  • anecdotally, we have heard that there is 16GB upload limit per Office365 tenancy.  Is that right? How does that work with “business as usual” traffic?
  • there are some great new “templates” in SharePoint Online, such as Planner, Groups and Teams.  Unlike common or garden site collections, we cannot see these as site collections in the usual way in the SharePoint admin area.  How can an organisation manage and govern such sites?  Additionally, it would be great if we could set the default to be private during creation.  Yet we understand that these templates have been conceived to please the majority.

Another thought: through observation of users OneDrive and the rationale of setting these so that only the user can see files?  In a script that I wrote to migrate SharePoint MySites to OneDrive, I had to explicitly and the SharePoint Admin as a secondary admin.  This is so that we can access their files in order that we can provide governance and support of the content.  Out of curiosity, why can’t an admin do that by default?

Planner screenshot






This blog first appeared on http://blogs.brighton.ac.uk/tristianobrien/

Interested in finding out more about a UCISA bursary, then visit UCISA Bursary Scheme.

Digital transformation in action

Sara Somerville


Sara Somerville
Information Solutions Manager
University of Glasgow


AIIMing to get the best out of an amazing opportunity

As an information professional working in an IT department and providing document management solutions and services across the university, I have always found AIIM (Association for Information and Image Management) the best professional fit for my mix of skills. The one-day AIIM UK roadshow) (held in London every year) always proves illuminating. It offers a great selection of practical case studies and keynotes, alongside an exhibition comprising a wide range of enterprise content and document management technology vendors. Finding out about UCISA’s bursary scheme last year opened up the amazing possibility of being funded to attend the much bigger AIIM International conference held over three days in the US.  I was absolutely delighted when I heard that my application was successful!

This year the AIIM conference is being held in New Orleans from 26-28 April, with the added bonus of being sandwiched in between the two weekends of the Jazz festival. The title of this year’s conference is ‘Digital Transformation in Action,’ and the themes centre around automating business processes, protecting and securing information with governance, and gaining insight to better engage customers and employees. As with the UK event, there is a good mix of keynotes, panel Q&As, round table discussions, and real-life case studies, alongside the exhibition by technology vendors.

Like many other institutions, my university is addressing issues around information governance and management at an enterprise level, including the retention and deletion of data across business systems. With the provision of a wide range of on- and off-site services, and the increase in the use of personal mobile devices, the current challenge for the university is ensuring its data is stored in the right way while remaining accessible over the longer term.  I’m hoping the conference will provide some new and interesting insights into tackling these issues, and give me additional skills and knowledge to enhance my current involvement in improvement projects regarding corporate business process.

In particular I’m looking forward to hearing the keynotes from Erik Qualman  (author of ‘What Happens in Vegas Stays on YouTube’) and the futurist Jacob Morgan (author of ‘The Future of Work’). Erik is a social media expert who believes that privacy is dead, and who provides new rules for building our digital reputations, while Jacob works with the world’s most forward-thinking companies to explore how the workplace is changing and how it might look in the future.

From the sessions, I’m hoping to get answers about the consumerization of IT from Goodbye Applets, Hello HTML5 Document Viewing and Information Management is Hard. Guess What? Your Customers Don’t Care.  And I hope to hear about agile approaches to keeping up with the fast pace of change in technology from How Do You Disrupt a Disrupter?

Even before leaving the UK I have already learned from the conference agenda what the ‘SMAC stack’ is (Social, Mobile, Analytics and Cloud Services), so I can’t wait to dive further in.

I will be tweeting from the conference (you can follow me @InfoSherlockUK for updates), and please do tweet me questions to ask on your behalf. I will also be posting on the UCISA blog.

What are the keys to consistently successful project delivery for your institution?

The Gartner PPM and IT Governance Summit was held this week in London http://www.gartner.com/technology/summits/emea/program-management/ 

Within hours of the event starting tweets were emerging with the latest research and models for project success. For example the Gartner model for the successful Enterprise Project Management Organisation – also at http://www.flickr.com/photos/27772229@N07/8725958414/in/photostream

Gartner Enterprise Project Management Organisation

As ever Gartner provide useful and thought provoking input. But how would these ideas work in your institution?

This got me thinking about keys for project success in our business. Have they been lost behind the metaphorical sofa of academic culture or are there some common ideas we can share?

At the University of Edinburgh we’ve been running our project management organisation for more than 10 years. Over those years not everything has worked but hopefully we’ve learned from our successes (and our failures) and matured a little bit along the way. Here are some of the key things we’ve learned on the journey:

Start small you won’t be able to do crack everything at once – we started with project initiation and definition – prior to that we only really had this (and even then in a very basic way) for our larger projects

Develop a common framework for your projects and project teams – we started with a very basic projects intranet available only to IT staff – and not project stakeholders! It was a start however and allowed us to develop processes for change and issue management, risk, project reporting etc. Today we have a projects web site which is the “gold copy” for all our project information at: https://www.projects.ed.ac.uk/

Measure project costs – both estimates and actuals for all your projects – we developed a project estimation process and introduced time recording for our IT staff very early on. This was challenging culturally but its hard now to imagine delivering projects without the management capabilities and information that this provides.

Don’t neglect your partner relationships – sadly I suspect that we did this. Our initial certainty about the correctness of the approach perhaps made us forget that projects are a people business and relationships matter. Better to avoid this trap than have to recover later.

Tackle project governance – trust goes a long way toward achieving good governance so an ongoing investment in partner relationships will pay off many times over. Ensure that:

  • project sponsors understand their responsibilities and are empowered to discharge these
  • projects teams are supported to deliver – use your more experienced staff in a quality assurance role as senior suppliers
  • you have representative and empowered project boards that meet regularly for all your major projects. An effective project board is a key part of the team and should have have an “access all areas” pass to project information
  • you remember the real end users i.e. the students and staff who will use the deliverables 
  • small projects are not neglected – develop basic quality assurance processes for all projects

Be resilient, remember why we are here, stick at it and enjoy the ride – As President harry S. Truman once said “it’s amazing what you can accomplish if you do not care who gets the credit”

Now your secrets may well be different so if you’d like to join the conversation please come along to the Project and Change Management Group at http://www.ucisa.ac.uk/groups/pcmg.aspx

We’re looking forward to hearing from you!