Tuesday, 28 May 2013

Byte Night 2013

This year, a team from IT Services at the University of St Andrews (including myself!) are taking part in Byte Night to raise much needed funds for Action for Children.

Byte Night is the IT industry's annual sleep out in support of Action for Children. Each year hundreds of individuals and teams from across the technology and business community spend a night exposed to the elements in a bid to raise sponsorship and awareness of Action for Children's work to help prevent youth homelessness. Action for Children helps to prevent youth homelessness through early intervention by ensuring that young people across the UK are given the support they need before it's too late.

Your support would be greatly appreciated!  We have a fundraising target of £2500.  The 'sleep-out' takes place in Edinburgh on 4th October 2013. 

To sponsor us, please go to our fundraising page: 

To find out more about Byte Night and the work of Action for Children, please go to:

Thank you!

Thursday, 23 May 2013

Holyrood's 2nd ICT Conference: 18/19th June 2013

Last month we submitted two entries for the inaugral Holyrood Connect Awards which take place in June. 

“The Awards aim to recognise, promote and commend the significant achievements of public sector ICT professionals in Scotland. The Awards aim to encourage practitioners to develop innovative and creative ICT solutions, sharing best practice and rewarding innovation and progress for ICT initiatives that are really working.”  Will Peakin, Editor of Connect Magazine

We're delighted that both of our entries have been shortlisted, which is again testimony to my staff who deserve this recognition. 

· Green Award – Effective use of ICT to deliver environmental benefits (shortlist:  SEPA, Scottish Government and University of St Andrews). 

· Project Delivery Award - Service Desk Institute Certification (shortlist:  South Lanarkshire Council, Visit Scotland, East Lothian Council and the University of St Andrews). 

The awards ceremony takes place on 18th June 2013 in Glasgow – and forms part of the ICT Connect Conference on 18/19 June 2013, which I'm looking forward to attending. 


Sunday, 12 May 2013

Computing Enterprise Mobility Summit - 11 June 2013

I'm delighted to have been asked to participate in this years Computing Enterprise Mobility Summit in London in June. 
Adapting and keeping up with the pace of change can be a real challenge and the growth in this area will change the IT landscape as we know it. 
In a University environment it's difficult to shape the strategy in terms of enterprise mobility - as the students will bring whatever device they choose - and will have an expectation that we'll support it.  So our strategy has to be to - flexibility.   In that context, BYOD nothing new to IT professionals in universities - we're good at that with students, but for staff it's a big issue in terms of security of data. 
From a business point of view - for support staff, teaching staff and researchers, etc,  CYOD (Choose Your Own Device) can present more of a challenge.  The ideal model - give staff a small range of devices they can use and tell them these are the platforms we'll support.   Easy!  The reality is very different!  
At St Andrews, we're becoming a more collaborative and mobile workforce - and there are a range of platforms out there that can enhance the way we work together and make us more efficient - or just make us available 24x7??
The increasing use of Mobile Apps to interface with core business systems is driving a direction towards the handheld device becoming the critical business tool going forward - whether it be a smartphone, mini tablet or something in between - this has yet to be seen.  
The agenda for the Enterprise Mobility event is excellent and I'm very much looking forward to taking part. 
Panel: "Enterprise of the Future: Office of the Future"
On my panel, I'll be alongside the CTO of the BBC, the Head of IT for Shelter UK and the Director of IM & T for Royal Free Hospital, London.  I'm sure it will be a fascinating discussion.