Information technology changes rapidly and often. After reviewing external sources including Educause Top 10 IT Issues1 and the Horizon Report2, we believe these external forces will impact our future:
Cyber threats are everywhere; it’s not a matter of if, it’s a matter of when and what is the response. Preparation is key.
Hybrid teaching, learning, and work will continue to complicate the environment.
The demand for affordable higher education will increase pressure to maintain costs and efficiency.
Changing student demographics reinforces the need for flexible systems available 24/7 from any location.
The pervasiveness of technology (IoT) where everything is connected all the time, will continue to impact technical infrastructure design and risk.
The digital divide will continue to negatively impact students and the workforce; institutions should be prepared to offer technology, training, and support services to minimize the gaps.
The demand for non-traditional education continues to increase, driving the need for online, flexible, and agile systems and services.
Internal trends3 unique to UNC Charlotte have also been factored into this plan:
The ongoing benefits from the formation of OneIT will continue to be achieved including simplifying systems and processes, reducing risk and providing enhanced services.
As the University drives to become a leading research institution, the technical infrastructure that supports research, including support staff and processes, will evolve and grow.
In order to grow as an institution, we must develop a shared vision, improve communication, and reduce silos.
The community needs access to good data to make good decisions; data silos create work and overhead.
We need to mature IT procurement, budgeting, and project prioritization processes.
1 Educause Top 10 Issues 2022: https://www.educause.edu/research-and-publications/research/top-10-it-issues-technologies-and-trends/2022
3 Identified through the focus groups and reviewing the Shaping What’s Next institutional plan