Customer: Georgia Institute of Technology
Industry: Education - Higher
A scalable, flexible, and reliable solution that could be built on top of their existing infrastructure
Ability to manage and archive documents for students, faculty, and business units that could be easily researched, retrieved, and automatically track revisions
Need to have a system allowing collaboration and communication using various voice, messaging, and conferencing options on multiple devices including mobile units
Letting users access data, perform tasks, launch and utilize applications from as few UI’s (user interfaces) as possible – Microsoft Outlook appeared to be the logical choice and one which College of Architecture users were already familiar
Ability to exchange data and assign tasks according to administrative workflow processes, institute data control policy and/or end-user preferences
Keys to Success:
Using B2B Technologies' consultants that are familiar with the needs of higher education
Selecting Microsoft's SharePoint product as the platform for the new application
Working closely with the College of Architecture IT personnel in designing an efficient and effective approach to content migration, management, and access
Besides being consistently ranked as one of the top three engineering institutes in North America and ranked 7th in the nation among public colleges and universities, Georgia Tech prides itself on being a leader in applying technology to solve not only engineering problems, but business problems too. This includes the commercial world and the business of running a college.
From the institution’s perspective, being recognized as a technology leader has many benefits.
First, it helps attract some of the best minds on the globe to apply and attend Georgia Tech – not only as students but as instructors as well. Second, it allows the institution to consult with businesses in Georgia and organizations throughout the world in applying best-of-breed solutions employing current and emerging technologies. This can provide a competitive edge in a global world that is quickly becoming flattened through communication parity, primarily brought about by the Internet. This could not have been more evident than when Georgia Tech assisted Atlanta in winning the 1996 Olympics. As part of the “sales package” they produced a computer-generated virtual representation of what the facilities would look like for each of the venues. Committee members could actually see, in real time, not only the location of each event, but how the existing and planned structures would work in supporting the games.
The need to continually increase communication and collaborative capabilities has been recognized for several years as an important issue for the College of Architecture. As can be imagined, reference able intellectual capital developed over many decades has tremendous value to current faculty and students. The ability to access and share these assets without communication barriers is very important. Obviously, because of Georgia Tech’s reputation, they could have selected hardware and software products from any of the world’s leading technology vendors; each anxious to have their wares showcased by the school.
“After spending several years evaluating a number of products we chose to stay with Microsoft, especially in light of the new product releases,” says Robert Gerhart, Director of Technology for the College of Architecture. “The new collaborative products will allow us to greatly expand services to our end-users with our existing infrastructure and knowledge assets.”
B2B Technologies, an Atlanta-based Microsoft Gold Partner, was selected to work with Georgia Tech and Microsoft in implementing the selected application. “MOSS is the product we were waiting for to integrate our existing applications and at the same time provide additional operability and mobility as a service to our diverse community of users. MOSS is a good fit for us both strategically and tactically”, continued Gerhart.
Facilitates collaboration about sored content such as architectural documents, engineering drawings, etc.
Gives students working abroad or from off-campus locations access to content during non-classroom hours
Provides workflow functions to facilitate assignments
Provides platform for future remote learning curriculum as well as other evolving user and college requirements