January 2020 CIO Update

Well, here we are in 2020!  We have started the new semester and year with several changes and initiatives. Below please find information on a few of them:

VCU Mobile Expansion

Two new modules, Facilities Self Service and Leave Calculator have recently been added. Facilities Self Service allows you to put in a new service request to Facilities Management or check on a recently submitted request. Leave Calculator allows to you see your current leave balance, plus more.  Many new features will be added later this semester including a New Student Orientation app (NSO), a Parent and Family persona, and the long-awaited GRTC Mobile application for riding the GRTC buses.  

Google adds a top request feature – send emails as attachments

Google has added the ability to attach emails to a new email without downloading them first.  Visit the Collaboration Services website for all the latest news items at https://collaborate.vcu.edu.

The Tableau Project  

Tableau is an interactive data visualization application.  Tableau products can be used to query relational databases, build online analytical processing cubes, access cloud database and shared spreadsheets to generate graph-type data visualizations. The products can also extract, store, and retrieve data from an in-memory data engine. Technology Services is working with a number of departments to consolidate and administer the application, similar to the Smartsheet project.  The consolidation will result in lower prices and will help to simplify the acquisition of the product for the university community. We plan to finalize the consolidation by April 17.

12 Days of TS

In December, VCU Technology Services (VCU TS) celebrated the winter holidays with the “12 Days of TS” campaign across our social media platforms to promote VCU TS services provided to the community. Each day the communications team collaborated on a new feature with an associated graphic ranging from LinkedIn Learning to the Information Security team to the VCU Computer Center. 

The campaign increased our audience on Instagram by 63%. Facebook engagement was less of a success which demonstrates our target demographic resides mostly on Instagram these days. Good lesson there! We are currently averaging 2,500 impressions per social media post and reaching more accounts than ever before. Consistent posting of content since the conclusion of the campaign and giveaway has maintained engagement and retention. Yes, in keeping with the holiday spirit, our campaign included an Apple iPad giveaway. Our Apple iPad winner, Jade, is an alum of VCU’s Robertson School and a first-year graduate student studying art direction at the VCU Brandcenter. She looks forward to using her new swag for Procreate, a powerful iPad illustration app. 

The communications team plans to continue courting enthusiastic engagement and building reach across VCU Technology Services’ social media accounts with a strong focus on Instagram.

Collaboration Services hosting popular training classes

The Collaboration Services team is currently filling classes to waitlist status as faculty, staff, and students realize the power of collaboration using G Suite for Education tools.  If you are still uploading Excel files as email attachments, are curious about new features in Gmail you may not be using to your advantage, or want to incorporate the use of Google Forms into your work routine, visit https://go.vcu.edu/gogoogle to register for an upcoming class.

Best wishes for a great Spring Semester!

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