Rebranding of Purdue IT: Frequently Asked Questions

Will this restructuring include layoffs for existing personnel?
No. This is is a restructuring, not a consolidation. The intent is to create a unified Purdue IT that maximizes the expertise and resources across all units. Our goal is to enhance our IT operations, not reduce them.
How will this impact the reporting structure of existing academic IT units?
Current academic IT directors and executive directors will now report to either the Deputy CIO or Chief of Staff to the CIO. These changes will not further affect the reporting structure of existing academic units at this time. As Purdue IT further develops, there will be new opportunities that may affect the reporting structure across all IT units.
Will individual academic areas have to submit tickets to Purdue IT? Or can they continue to communicate directly with IT staff who understand their programs?
For the time being, tickets will continue to be submitted to academic IT units. As Purdue IT develops and learns about academic IT needs from specific Colleges, some matters will move to a new ticketing process. With increased collaboration and understanding, Purdue IT will move forward together to establish an updated ticketing processes that will benefit all areas at Purdue.
Will this divert existing academic IT staff with specialized skills away from their home departments to other units?
Will individual academic areas be able to provide input during performance management for specific IT staff supporting specialized programs for a College?
Yes, academic IT areas will provide performance input for IT staff supporting specialized programs using the P360 Feedback Survey feature.
What happens to salary savings for people that are in the IT job family and on grants? Right now, that salary savings goes to the department, and then is distributed according to department policy. In some departments, that is shared with the staff member.
For IT salaries not funded by grants, the salary savings goes to Purdue IT, which now manages all salaries for  IT. For IT salaries funded by grants, the savings will continue to be managed by the area managing the grant funds. The exception will be any situation in which the Dean of a College and the CIO agree on the elimination of a position. In that instance, savings will accrue to the College.

Town Hall Q&A

Did nobody seriously consider the fact that Purdue IT abbreviates to PIT and all the related puns and jokes that would go along with that?

We are Purdue. We are Information Technology. We are Purdue Information Technology. Not everything needs to be abbreviated. As we move forward and work toward becoming the model for IT in higher education, it’s important that the Purdue name remains a part of that. Our master brand could be abbreviated to PU, but we simply say Purdue. Likewise, we can get accustomed to Purdue IT.

Now that academic units have been rolled up, will they be added to the distribution lists that we were taking off of like the what is broken list?

We need to focus on delivering the right communications at the right times without organization-wide blasts for everything.  Individuals are welcome to opt-in to specific distribution lists if they so choose.

Will there be any annual contract charges for Apple Support? Originally, each end user was responsible for an annual fee per OS. What is the CLA process for requesting new equipment setup?

Apple desktop support will continue to be provided by the local embedded IT units. For those in a chargeback model today (via CLA or CSDS), due to areas not having IT staff, the intent is to continue the chargeback model. Historically, CLA charged each College/Unit/Department according to the number of iOS and macOS operating systems being supported. This will continue until further notice. For customers that currently utilize CLA IT for Mac support, no changes have been made. CLA desktop support staff will continue to quote and assist in the order process for their Mac contract customers.

Does this mean the domain name will change? If so, it will impact a lot of services, scripts and configurations in thousands of server names and URLs. Lots of unexpected work.

Yes, the domain name will change. The priority will be cosmetic changes – public-facing things like websites, email addresses, labels, etc. We will need to assess things like applications that have, and a plan will be assembled on how to handle system names (attrition, renaming, etc.)

By necessity, the focus of centralized IT and academic IT is considerably different. What is the future vision for the academic IT units at Purdue?

Purdue IT is an opportunity to create a culture that appreciates and understands the nuance of 1:1 customer interaction at the faculty and researcher levels while growing an enterprise capability that can provide services and solutions to all our constituents. Part of the organization will continue to provide these services, innovate at new levels, and delight our customers. Other parts of the organization will work to ensure the delivery of services and give attention to safety and security while working to meet in the middle to deliver at speed.

With respect to the merger of academic IT departments into the greater Purdue IT - How will this merger break from previous combinations which resulted in reduced customer services to the merged departments over time?

We intend to properly structure the organization to provide high-quality enterprise-class services from the center while augmenting and expanding the close relationships held with faculty and staff across all corners of the university at the edge. Both capabilities are essential to bolstering the university to preeminence from a technology standpoint.

Might representation/input from Faculty into our decision making process be broadened to include more disciplines (e.g. liberal arts)?

An advisory committee is in development to include representation from all areas.

re: budget head count — in Research Computing, we typically have new projects coming up now and then. we need to have open positions to be ready to meet new project needs (too late for research projects if we post positions when project funds arrive). Is that doable (keep position posting open)?

We are currently reviewing the open posting as an option for Research Computing positions.

AI is one of the hottest, fastest-moving areas of computing. Do we have any groups within Purdue IT looking at tech like ChatGPT and how it might be leveraged, such as creating/building our own internal training models to support our own teams/departments?

Several units, including the Robotic Process Automation (RPA) Center are exploring machine learning and AI technology for various projects, but nothing concrete is currently in place.

The org chart you shared apparently had all the academic IT staff reporting through you, but in SuccessFactors org charts some of them still report through their respective deans. Which one is right?

The chart shared during the Town Hall is correct. Individual academic IT leaders now report to either Corey or Gerhard.

Our knowledgebase and technical documentation has taken a serious hit in recent years. Will the new org structure and ticketing system allow us to be more agile in capturing troubleshooting and process information?

Knowledge Management is a highly important, core practice that is going to receive much needed and continual attention. Service and product owners in conjunction with a Knowledge Manager will be accountable for helping to ensure customers and stakeholders are able to receive the right information in the proper format.  The new ITSM solution, TeamDynamix, provides vastly improved Knowledge Base capabilities and will provide a much better user experience.

Is a retirement incentive plan being considered to help alleviate the logjam?

Not at this time.

What are some of the key motivations and end goals of centralization? (What problems do we hope to fix)

Becoming one unified organization, Purdue IT, allows us to maximize our strengths, increase collaborations and avoid redundancies so that we can concentrate efforts on innovating ways to improve the customer experience across all of Purdue.

So is PFW IT, PNW IT, etc. being lifted and shifted ?

Yes, effective April 1, the IT units for Purdue Fort Wayne, Purdue Northwest and Purdue Indianapolis became part of Purdue IT under the leadership of Tim Winders, Asst. VP of IT and Deputy CIO, who reports to CIO Ian Hyatt.

What are the plans for those who went through the ITIL training and have not passed? How can we help them to pass?

Participation in Foundations training comes with two attempts at passing the certification exam. For those who are seeking additional assistance, help sessions are regularly scheduled.  Typically, these are held on-premises in the 2550 facility.  These sessions typically involve half a day and include an interactive gaming session specific to the exam, proceeded by a review of the course syllabus with a focus on engagement, followed by an instructor-proctored, paper exam.  Hybrid sessions are also offered to help with accommodating those who cannot attend on-premises. However, those attending virtually will need to use their PeopleCert credentials and take the exam online. Sign up for scheduled help sessions HERE

Also, for anyone who has participated in the training and is seeking additional help prior to taking an exam, Udemy currently offers 6 online, timed practice exams that include feedback/reasoning for each question and answer, all for less than $20.  If anyone is interested, please contact your respective administrative assistant to help with purchasing using a P-card.

Who supports 4 winds?

4 Winds support is a joint effort between Purdue IT Endpoint Systems Support (formerly CSDS) and Marcom. Individual IT units are responsible for their departmental displays and academic and administrative departments around campus are responsible for their own content.

What does the vision look like for the Indianapolis IT support?

Purdue IT senior leadership are in frequent communication with Rob Lowden and his team at IUPUI about how we are going to effect and deliver technology. Because of the shared space, we will likely share their infrastructure and come up with a strategy in order to utilize their service and capability where it makes sense. That model currently exists in the reverse at Purdue Fort Wayne, with IU leveraging PFW services.

How can staff obtain a Mobile ID?

The initial launch of Mobile ID is focused on students only due to licensing costs. However, we are looking into a future rollout for faculty and staff as well.

How will we effectively enact this amount of change in 3-6 months with the current rate of hiring? Is there a dedicated change team in place?

We don’t have a dedicated change team, but we do have a leadership team with various members whose roles are directly tied to the success of that. Department heads are also working closely in this area. The 3-6 month timeframe is when we want to see a lot of activity, movement and people identifying the various opportunities. Ultimately, we anticipate it to take approximately 15 months to get to something approaching the new normal.

In the past we have been a in drastic financial savings mode. Is Purdue currently in a bad financial position holistically?

Not at all. The numbers we have here are very viable for an organization this size supporting what we support. Our finances have been well-stewarded and well-managed.