URL: string(7) "softcat"

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“Over the past 18 months or so, the education sector has been heavily challenged [and] working hard to limit the impact on business as usual or respond to unprecedented restrictions on in-person teaching,” he said. “People, empowered by technology, have made navigating this uncertain and disruptive period possible. And this will only continue as we learn to live and thrive with new ways of working.” When it comes to identifying cybersecurity attacks, there is a wide sub-sector split in education. While primary schools are relatively close to typical businesses in terms of how many identify breaches (36% vs 39%), secondary schools (58%) and further education colleges (75%) are much more likely to recognise them. In August we reported on how education was the most targeted sector in more than half of the nations surveyed by Check Point Research, with cybercriminals exploiting the industry’s rapid shift to remote learning. [post_title] => Digital workspace top tech priority in education – survey [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => digital-workspace-top-tech-priority-in-education-survey [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2021-11-23 13:34:45 [post_modified_gmt] => 2021-11-23 13:34:45 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://edtechnology.co.uk/?p=47823 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [1] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 36086 [post_author] => 83 [post_date] => 2020-12-07 16:50:27 [post_date_gmt] => 2020-12-07 16:50:27 [post_content] => A new report sheds light on the technologies that have helped steer education through one of the most difficult – not to mention disrupted – years the sector has seen thus far. Produced by IT infrastructure solutions provider Softcat, the Business Tech Priorities Report 2020 reflects the views of more than 1,500 public and private sector organisations in the UK and Ireland, across 21 industries. Daily operations across the education sector have been completely transformed amid the ongoing pandemic, altering procedures surrounding duty of care, staff absences, remote learning, the digital divide and learning attainment gaps among students. This runs alongside rising pressure on public sector institutions to keep data secure, manage finances, and drive workforce productivity. Technology has enabled the education sector's ability to adapt to the changing situation, mobilising its workforce and allowing it to adopt new operating models, which many institutions may decide to implement long-term. Overall, 20 of the 21 industries surveyed – including education – agreed that their most pressing tech challenge during the pandemic came with the switch to remote teaching and learning.
"It is clear from our 2020 Business Tech Priorities Report that the importance of enterprise IT has truly been solidified, accelerating demand and giving rise to innovative use cases" – Richard Wyn Griffith, Softcat
As such, the report posits that the biggest priority area for IT investment in educator should be end-user computing (EUC), which consolidates all daily workload systems and allows employees – including teachers – and students to work productively and securely, whether they are on-campus or working from home. Cybersecurity is names as the second biggest tech priority for the education sector. Other industries agreed, with 86% of respondents citing a primary focus on keeping users, data and infrastructure secure throughout 2021. This is up 83% on results from the 2019 report. This makes sense, education has become an increasingly prominent target for cybercrime in recent years, with a government survey from last year showing that secondary schools, FE and HE institutions are at the greatest risk, with 76% and 80% of institutions, respectively, identifying breaches or attacks in the last 12 months. Cybercriminals also capitalised on the chaos caused by national lockdown, with education providers being forced to lapse on security measure to support a rapid response to the disruption. Attackers used this gap to their advantage, with breaches on UK organisations surging by a third in 2020's first quarter. These findings confirm that the education sector must strive to standardise and consolidate its security technology, allowing institutions to balance employee productivity alongside student freedom and cyber risk management. Networking technologies were identified as the third most pressing investment area for the education sector, as a digitised, stable, secure and reliable network is key to facilitating speedy and efficient communication between computers and devices. Richard Wyn Griffith, MD of Softcat, commented: "This year has been hugely challenging for the education sector. Despite each unprecedented twist and turn, organisations have shown agility, creativity and intelligence in the face of disruption and pressure. "It is clear from our 2020 Business Tech Priorities Report that the importance of enterprise IT has truly been solidified, accelerating demand and giving rise to innovative use cases. The future of enterprise IT is looking brighter."
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It teamed up with trusted IT solutions provider Softcat to deliver on that promise

Solution highlights
● Three-year contract to supply 6,000 end user devices
● Leading-edge technology provision from Lenovo, VMware and Microsoft 
● Consultancy services: Software procurement, Software Asset Management (SAM), Roadmapping

About Kingston’s University

● Higher education provider situated in Kingston upon Thames in London ● More than 20,000 students, including 3,000+ international students
● Diverse and comprehensive range of full- and part-time courses for undergraduates, graduates and professionals
● £205m annual income
● 2,000+ staff, 5 faculties and 4 campuses 

The challenge
Kingston University has implemented an extensive IT transformation programme. ‘Connecting Kingston’ has a number of strategic priorities and its main aim is to provide students and staff with a standardised, reliable and highly effective ICT platform to support high-quality teaching and research. A critical element of this initiative is the End User Computing (EUC) project, which has provided the very latest devices to students and staff, enabling them to leverage full value from their studies and work. 

When selecting a provider to fulfil the requirements, Kingston University’s IT leadership was keen to work with an organisation that would “be more of a partner than just a supplier fulfilling orders” and could deliver the devices needed to make Kingston University an even better place to study.

The solution
Softcat initially provided a VMware Enterprise Licensing Agreement via the Software License Resellers framework as part of the ongoing Connecting Kingston project. The success of the engagement proved a major driver in the IT team’s decision to approach Softcat again when seeking a provider to supply multiple devices. To complement the radical improvements in the overall IT infrastructure, Kingston University sought the very latest technologies from leading suppliers, such as Lenovo and Microsoft, to deliver an optimised, standardised and highly functional device estate.

ABOVE: Learning resources centre, Kingston University 

This initial approach resulted in a three-year contract via the National Desktop and Notebook Agreement, with Softcat acting as a strategic partner tasked with supplying and managing around 6,000 Lenovo devices throughout the lifecycle of the project. Softcat, working alongside delivery partners BTR and Exertis, committed to providing up to 1,000 devices per month. Each device would be asset tagged and delivered with a pre-imaged hard drive configured to precisely match the University’s specific requirements.

Softcat worked closely with the IT Team to realise maximum value through providing a range of consultancy services, including: 

●Identifying and procuring software to match curriculum requirements
●Ongoing Microsoft software licensing advice to minimise cost and complexity going forward
●Road mapping to help ensure the project delivered on strategic goals
●Managing the disposal of the existing end user devices securely and in line with regulations.

The benefits
The availability of the very latest devices, software and network access is helping to enhance Kingston University’s reputation as a fantastic place to learn and develop much-needed skills. The University is now able to facilitate access to laptops for students who come to university without a device through the highly successful ‘laptop loan’ scheme – which enables them to borrow a device for free from an automated locker. Softcat has even spoken directly with students to assess what they need from a technology supplier in order to fully benefit from the technology on offer.

Why Softcat?
“We’ve been growing together throughout the relationship,” says Wendy Hollingshead, IT Vendor and Contracts Manager. “Softcat has helped us simplify and clarify what we need in place to deliver an optimal student experience from an IT perspective. But just as importantly, it’s been mutually beneficial. We’ve helped Softcat refine supply chain processes through identifying potential issues and working together to improve them. We sought a trusted partner to work with us long term and Softcat is an ideal fit.”

W: www.softcat.com

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You may also like: ‘The IT manager is more important than ever’
“Over the past 18 months or so, the education sector has been heavily challenged [and] working hard to limit the impact on business as usual or respond to unprecedented restrictions on in-person teaching,” he said. “People, empowered by technology, have made navigating this uncertain and disruptive period possible. And this will only continue as we learn to live and thrive with new ways of working.” When it comes to identifying cybersecurity attacks, there is a wide sub-sector split in education. While primary schools are relatively close to typical businesses in terms of how many identify breaches (36% vs 39%), secondary schools (58%) and further education colleges (75%) are much more likely to recognise them. In August we reported on how education was the most targeted sector in more than half of the nations surveyed by Check Point Research, with cybercriminals exploiting the industry’s rapid shift to remote learning. [post_title] => Digital workspace top tech priority in education – survey [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => digital-workspace-top-tech-priority-in-education-survey [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2021-11-23 13:34:45 [post_modified_gmt] => 2021-11-23 13:34:45 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://edtechnology.co.uk/?p=47823 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [comment_count] => 0 [current_comment] => -1 [found_posts] => 3 [max_num_pages] => 0 [max_num_comment_pages] => 0 [is_single] => [is_preview] => [is_page] => [is_archive] => 1 [is_date] => [is_year] => [is_month] => [is_day] => [is_time] => [is_author] => [is_category] => [is_tag] => 1 [is_tax] => [is_search] => [is_feed] => [is_comment_feed] => [is_trackback] => [is_home] => [is_privacy_policy] => [is_404] => [is_embed] => [is_paged] => [is_admin] => [is_attachment] => [is_singular] => [is_robots] => [is_favicon] => [is_posts_page] => [is_post_type_archive] => [query_vars_hash:WP_Query:private] => 3f94981e8cf42367a4b36de1355065ce [query_vars_changed:WP_Query:private] => [thumbnails_cached] => [stopwords:WP_Query:private] => [compat_fields:WP_Query:private] => Array ( [0] => query_vars_hash [1] => query_vars_changed ) [compat_methods:WP_Query:private] => Array ( [0] => init_query_flags [1] => parse_tax_query ) )
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