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IT Transformation FAQs

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These Virginia Tech IT Transformation FAQs will be updated continually. Don't see your question answered? Please submit it using this form.
 

OVERVIEW

The IT Transformation is a new program focused on strengthening IT across Virginia Tech. The effort will aim to advance the following charges over the long term:

  • Strengthen the core: Reduce risk while bolstering the organization and capabilities of the Division of IT to cultivate greater trust and improve morale through the delivery of reliable, cost-effective core infrastructure and services. 
  • Build a culture of collaboration: In parallel, Virginia Tech must establish a shared vision for IT, including defined roles and responsibilities for central/distributed IT units to proactively collaborate through a clear governance change. 
  • Foster innovation and efficiency: Virginia Tech should focus on enhancing the student, faculty, staff, and research experience by implementing efficient, effective, timely, and innovative services across the institution.

Our long-term success relies on our ability to deliver strong core infrastructure and services. An IT model that is too siloed and too transactional - as it exists today across the administrative and academic enterprises - impedes our ability to achieve this charge in the most secure, efficient, collaborative, and innovative manner possible.

The IT Transformation Program is a high-level priority for the university. Early work to translate Deloitte's recommendations to a Virginia Tech-specific roadmap will begin over the course of the spring 2022 semester. Several existing operational enhancements within the Division of IT and Division of HR are aligned with the Deloitte Assessment Team's recommendations and are currently already underway. Overall, Deloitte recommended a 3-4 year IT Transformation roadmap and implementation plan.

As of February 2022, the executive sponsors are examining the Deloitte Assessment Team's recommendations. The sponsors will soon establish and engage a steering committee and transformation program team to work with stakeholders and constituents to develop a Virginia Tech-specific IT transformation roadmap. Virginia Tech IT employees and other university stakeholders received an initial briefing on Feb. 3.

In June 2021, the Board of Visitors requested that the SVP/CBO commission an IT security review and assessment to identify opportunities that may exist for us to leverage our resources to the fullest, collaborate across the organization, and ensure we do our very best to reduce cybersecurity threats.

Thanks to strong engagement from information technology employees and stakeholders across the university in the assessment process over the fall 2021 semester, we are now ready to assemble a program management team to review the findings and recommendations put forth by Deloitte and devise a Virginia Tech-specific implementation plan.

Fortunately, the university has many efforts already underway to build upon around data governance, cybersecurity, and much more.

Executive sponsorship for the IT Transformation includes Chris Kiwus, interim senior vice president and chief business officer; Cyril Clarke, executive vice president and provost; and Scott Midkiff, vice president for information technology and chief information officer, with strong support from the Board of Visitors.

The administrative transformation is the university-wide framework catalyzing these administrative enhancements. This IT initiative is a long-term effort within the administrative transformation.

In pursuit of institutional excellence, Virginia Tech continues to build on its capacity to deliver administrative and business services in the most cost-efficient and effective manner possible, taking advantage of advanced technologies and service delivery methods.

Longer-term, the change will be substantial as we are fundamentally transforming the IT operating model and organizational structures that may be familiar. In the near term, changes will be gradual and continual. Some of the ways in which we deliver our core services may change.

IT ASSESSMENT

Despite the fast-moving review and assessment process, the Deloitte team engaged with a broad range of IT stakeholders across the university as well as university leaders, faculty, and staff throughout the fall 2021 semester.

Deloitte interviewed over 100 stakeholders through 1:1 interviews, focus groups, and open office hours; analyzed survey responses from 109 stakeholders on their perceptions of IT effectiveness across the institution; and reviewed survey responses from 11 distributed unit leaders on unit IT capabilities and services.

EMPLOYEES

This is not a workforce reduction effort. A critical component of this program is IT talent retention and recruitment, as well as improving career pathway opportunities for existing IT employees across the university. This is not to say jobs will be the same; services and work may be delivered differently with the help of a shared vision to guide this critical work. 

Employee engagement will be critical. Employees and university constituents should continue to visit this IT Transformation website for more information on the initiative and to submit an inquiry. Employees are also encouraged to participate in town halls, forums, and office hour sessions that will be hosted on an ongoing basis, and also share any feedback or questions with their supervisor.

If we are to implement recommendations for cybersecurity, additional personnel will be needed in the IT Security Office and, potentially, in other areas.

Yes, improving our IT security training offerings through a consistent approach is a goal for the IT Transformation program.

Teams should continue to move forward with purchases and other decision making as needed to best support the achievement of their missions.

GOVERNANCE

Yes, data governance will be part of the structure for University IT governance. In particular, it is expected that the University Data Governance Council will continue largely as is, but will be put into a structure to report to the Executive IT Steering Committee.