The University of Technology Sydney has switched maintenance, support and security management of its Oracle database and technology platforms from Oracle to third party support provider Rimini Street.
In doing so, UTS has cut wait times for support requests and improved service quality on its Oracle system.
Rimini Street is also helping the university manage the ongoing IT skills shortage and rapid transition to hybrid learning while providing security for its database and advanced application middleware.
“UTS, like all universities in Australia, has had to rapidly transition to an almost exclusive online service delivery,” said Rimini Street group vice president and regional general manager, Australia, New Zealand and Oceania Daniel Benad.
“Budgets are tightening across the board, but the quality-of-service delivery expectations remain the same or higher.”
The university caters for more than 45,000 students, 3,500 staff and 7,000 researchers, with 300 staff employed in the IT department, responsible for the digital experiences supporting people and processes.
UTS faced numerous challenges during the pandemic, including a massive shift to online learning and remote work, along with a growing IT skills shortage.
Additionally, maintaining its database was draining its IT budget and internal resources. On top of this, support tickets were often slow to be resolved by by Oracle, preventing IT staff from completing valuable system upgrades or responding quickly to new challenges.
Staff were preoccupied with keeping systems afloat in a rapidly scaling up environment and had little time to focus on growth.
As a result, UTS was increasingly moving towards a more hybrid learning and working environment. Therefore cost capability, support and flexibility were key to guaranteeing robust and reliable IT services.
Shifting into the hybrid workspace also opened new avenues for cyber security attacks or breaches.
As the number and location of users increased, so did opportunities for access. As such, the university was conscious it needed to increase the security of its Oracle system, particularly as routine patching was time-consuming for its IT team.
UTS head of IT operations Brian Kelly said it was important to be mindful of risks from such a rapid transformation.
“We had to undergo numerous lengthy upgrades to keep our system secure from known flaws,” he said.
As a result, the university is developing its own security upgrades with a cloud-first strategy.
“We’ve also completed some other security projects, including secure identity management and access controls. We’re also working on automating service management, migrating to the cloud, anything that improves the quality of user experience,” Kelly added.