UCISA Advisory and Support Staff Symposium

Just heading back from the UCISA Advisory and Support Staff Symosium at Aston, Birmingham and there was plenty to think about!

Chris Sexton from Sheffield set the scene with an introduction that said what many of us have been thinking - that the next few years are going to be "interesting". Rhion James at the end of the symposium summed it up more bluntly saying that there would be a "melt down" in the public finances that nobody would escape.

Chris blogged about her views here:

It did, however, become clear in the Symposium that far from being all doom and gloom this is in fact a really exciting time for those working in support with lots of opportunities. However some of the inevitable changes may well take many out of their "comfort zone" and there is a need for us to change to meet the different demands placed on us from 24/7 support, through Web 2.0 and hot potatoes like outsourcing.

There have been hard times before in Universities but what is different this time is that IT is now so central to the way universties run (on both the"business" and "teaching and research" sides) that having IT services that meet the needs of the organisation will be a big part of the success (or otherwise) of institutions. There may be hard choices to make and we may not be able just to keep doing things "because we always have" - University IT departments are notorious for introducing new services without ever getting rid of any of the old ones!

There was quite a bit on Twitter this time around, with UCISA even having an "official" Twitter feed now!

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