Worcester University


With a history dating back to 1946, the University of Worcester (UoW) has established a reputation for world-class teaching and practical, purposeful research.

It’s a vibrant, forward-looking university, well known for high quality degrees that drive employers to actively seeking out their graduates.

As the only higher education institution in Herefordshire and Worcestershire, they have a strong role to play in the region and deliver a comprehensive range of degree programmes to nearly 10,000 students and employ over 1, 000 staff.

 

The culture and outlook of the University means they listen very carefully to what students say about their studies and    university life generally.

The courses and facilities at Worcester have undergone significant change and growth over the last few years, expanding into new subject areas, more than doubling student numbers and investing substantially in staff and new facilities.

 

The University has a well-managed, fully funded £100m investment programme to provide for new, improved and     refurbished facilities. Recently completed projects include the new City Campus, home to the Worcester Business School.

 

The Hive, a joint venture between the University and Worcestershire County Council opened in July 2012, provides a first class, inclusive, internationally acclaimed resource for students, staff and the wider community.

 

Opened in spring 2013, University of Worcester Arena offers both state-of-the-art facilities and an exceptional standard of universal accessibility. As well as providing excellent facilities for all areas of sports study, the Arena also allows the University to offer unique services to local sport clubs in the community as well as elite or professional athletes.

The University first acquired the ARCHIBUS system in 2009 and put it to use as a straightforward but very effective space management tool.

 

It was in 2012 that Helen Hill decided to exploit more of the systems capability by promoting the integration of the ARCHIBUS with the other five main systems used to manage the ever increasing facilities and student population.

 

 

 

 

 

It was a fresh approach that considered how the students and staff interacted with the university facilities and focussed on reducing the steps needed to get things done.

 



Single Sign-On


The UoW students and staff use the university intranet portal to access various services, one of which is ARCHIBUS Web Central.

 

The Single Sign-On allows quick access and ARCHIBUS is utilised as the key student and staff helpdesk, with the Helpdesk Request page embedded into the intranet portal.

 

The employee number is the key identifier used by staff and students and it is passed as a parameter through a form which is invisibly submitted via HTTP POST to the Web Central application server, and user credentials are seamlessly passed to the application and authentication is managed  automatically.

 

Once the user has logged into their relevant portal, they will not be challenged upon accessing Web Central.

Mass worked with the IT Department at UoW to define the relationships and successfully link the six primary databases:.

 

ARCHIBUS - is authoritative on the creation, editing and deletion of space data.

One or more views will be used to draw space information out of Archibus into the various other databases that need it: KX, for tracking students managed within Accommodations; SCIENTIA, for managing timetabled space allocation, and the ICT Helpdesk, where it will form part of the background data used to organise work.

 

Fields such as building, floor, and department and division descriptors from the parent tables are fundamental for inclusion in such a view; others might include the room category, type and use descriptors. If site level or higher information is needed this will need to be pulled through using a join on the building table where that relationship is defined.

 

The various data sources that need to pull information will be responsible for restricting it

accordingly, i.e. KX will only pull room records which are marked in the data as ‘residential’, and SCIENTIA will only pull records which are marked as ‘timetabled’.

 

Mass provided guidance on the matter of control over category designations and tailored such restrictions accordingly, being available in an advisory capacity as appropriate.

 

Logical Diagram


The UoW’s ARCHIBUS database integration with the QLP staff directory, SCIENTIA timetabled room directory, SITS student directory, KX student accommodation database and ICT Helpdesk is depicted below, showing the relationships between the databases involved in this system.

The links needed to be seamless and run at a regular interval to update all 6 data sources with standard formatted information.

 

 

QLP - the staff directory is authoritative on staff records. This is the source of staff identifier creation, editing and deletion. Records from here will be sent to ARCHIBUS for reconciling.

 

SCIENTIA - the timetabled room directory is used to manage the allocation of staff to timetabled rooms, and utilises authoritative ARCHIBUS space data for this purpose. It receives data from ARCHIBUS and QLP. No data from SCIENTIA will come back into ARCHIBUS.

 

SITS - the student directory is authoritative on student records. This is the source of student identifier creation, editing and deletion. Records from here will be sent to ARCHIBUS for reconciling.

 

KX - is the student accommodation database, and is not authoritative on record creation or deletion: it performs a data pull of Student Records from SITS, and performs a data pull of building/floor/Room records from ARCHIBUS, and manages the association of students (ARCHIBUS em records) with space identifiers. With validated data from both ARCHIBUS and SITS, this database will periodically perform a data push into a temp table in ARCHIBUS consisting of an update to existing em records of the space identifiers for employee location. This will be done for students in halls of residence only.

 

ICT – the Helpdesk draws space information from ARCHIBUS for use in managing and defining the support roles under it. No data from ICT will come back into ARCHIBUS.

 

This really is a fresh approach to managing the  facilities and reporting at a UK university and the UoW team are already planning to extend the use of ARCHIBUS further.

 

We are interested in finding more case studies to write  about and so if you, or your organisation, have a success story to tell then simply contact your Account Manager on  0118 977 8560 or email us at news@mass-plc.com


Alternativley, if you wish to discuss or have any questions regarding this case study, please feel free to post them in our Forum

 

Case Study Forum - Worcester

 

University of Worcester - http://www.worcester.ac.uk/

 



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