One generally presumes businesses and corporations when they think of IT department support. However, IT support for colleges and universities in the U.S. is growing exponentially in light of the technological revolution.
One such example is San Jacinto Community College (SJC). Based in Pasadena, Texas, SJC serves approximately 30,000 credit students and 2,500 faculty and staff. The IT department has 115 employees supporting three campuses, a District office and several extension centers.
Suzanne DeBlanc, Director, Enterprise Services for SJC, is responsible for ensuring the IT department is running at peak proficiency. They had been using HEAT Software™ (formerly FrontRange Solutions HEAT) for several years and decided to initiate a due-diligence process in their quest for a competent upgrade product in order to efficiently service the manifold needs of their expanding college system. Protection of their data in accordance with FERPA (Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act) was high on the list of priorities, along with great customer service and ease of use.
Said Ms. DeBlanc, "During our review and selection phase, we discovered many help desk ticketing systems that met several of our goals. We began to hone in on those tools that were cost effective for the college, very secure, scalable and modular, easy to deploy, provided efficient and friendly customer service and easy vendor collaboration. One of the things we really like about Giva's help desk software is that it is very modular and we can start with one module and roll out others as we have the time. With some other products, modules cannot be deployed incrementally and, as a result, require much more time, effort and money to get started."
Giva also solicits customer input for future product feature planning in order to incorporate it into its Agile software development process. A new release is pushed out every three weeks reflecting responses to customer feedback. As a result, ongoing benefits are realized due to Giva's nimble response to its customers' needs and requests. "As Giva continues to release enhancements every three weeks, it really starts to add up and is a big benefit for us. This means that we can have enhancements delivered to our users more quickly," said Ms. DeBlanc. "The other vendors we vetted were not developing their product improvements as quickly. I am very impressed with how Giva uses the Agile software development process. Also, with FrontRange HEAT Software, new releases could take a long time to implement and needed a lot of testing. Sometimes our production environment would suffer configuration issues as backward compatibility of new HEAT Software releases with the old versions was not always successfully delivered."
When compared with HEAT Software™ (formally FrontRange Solutions HEAT), the HIPAA compliant ITIL Giva Service Management Suite™ resulted in a:
- 75% reduction in time to deploy Giva's incident and problem management modules
- Saved 1 FTE position due to significantly less ongoing administration/maintenance and easier to use reporting
- Continuous product improvements with a new Giva release every 3 weeks using the Agile software development process
- Significant reduction in the Total Cost of Ownership (TCO)
- No coding required for integrating Active Directory using the Giva LDAP Synchronization Tool
- Outstanding reports that are easy to build and save, download to PDF or CSV, email or schedule to run automatically
"Giva is super flexible and allows us to replicate and improve on the customizations that we had in HEAT Software. The Giva Administration interface is very easy to use. It lays out the different fields in a very intuitive manner," said Ms. DeBlanc.
For more in-depth information, please see the full case study.
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