OIT to Move Employees, Services to UT Knoxville Campus

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The University of Tennessee Office of Information Technology (OIT) is moving more of its people and resources from UT System administration to the Knoxville campus administration.

The switch is expected to be completed by August 2010, and should result in more-efficient service and significant cost savings to the Knoxville campus.

Scott Studham, OIT Chief Information Officer, says the move is about giving more control to academic and administrative units in Knoxville.

“In the past, OIT’s philosophy was a top-down organizational service approach,” Studham said. “Now, our efforts are much more customer-driven, with input from campus groups and departments on their information technology needs, which determines our services.”

Many Knoxville campus units still use their limited departmental budgets to pay for outside IT support, Studham said, so this move will help them save money by using OIT instead. Having OIT technicians on campus also means that service calls can happen more quickly, he said, and is a vital part of the university’s efforts to find and encourage efficiencies at all campuses.

A months-long study of OIT staff effort indicated that the majority of OIT employees were occupied with Knoxville campus projects, rather than UT system projects, which was another reason for the switch, Studham said.

As part of the move from the UT System to the UT Knoxville campus, 138 employees will be reclassified as Knoxville campus employees and IT service centers will fall under campus control, along with more than $5 million in budgeted funds.

A smaller number of OIT employees and services will remain at the system level, to help coordinate statewide services among the university’s campuses and units.

Various Knoxville campus units have already given input to this change, Studham said, and will continue to do so.

“We’ve gotten feedback from the Faculty Senate, the Provost’s office, the Student Government Association and other groups, which we welcome,” Studham said, and OIT will continue to actively seek their opinions and ideas on how to improve information technology services in the future.

“Reliable information technology is very important to the university community,” Studham said. “It’s a responsibility we take very seriously, and we’re committed to providing the highest level of service.”

For more information on OIT programs and services, call 974-9900 or visit the OIT website at http://oit.utk.edu.

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