Bangor University is ranked amongst the UK’s top 10 universities for student satisfaction by the National Student Survey (NSS), and is located between the Snowdonia Mountains and the Menai Strait.

The university has a long tradition of academic excellence, founded in 1884. It today has 11,000 students, 650 teaching staff, three colleges housing sixteen academic schools, as well as over fifty specialist research centres; enabling the provision of courses spanning the Arts, Humanities and Business and Sciences. They have achieved a Gold Award, the highest rating possible, in the Teaching Excellence and Student Outcomes Framework (TEF).

Student-focused technology strategy

As the university has always held a reputation for excellence, the increasing demands from students and with competition with other universities means it is important that Bangor University maintains its standard of student satisfaction. To support this and continue to offer digital and online access to learning resources which students entering the university experienced at school, the IT team identified the need for a refreshed storage, data centre network and backup solution.

Bangor University entered a competitive tender process for an IT partner to ensure they had an efficient and effective network in place with flexible storage and backup – all critical to the day-to-day operational activities in the university.

Improved reliability, greater flexibility

Capita were awarded a contract in January 2018 to provide a new cost-effective and reliable storage and data centre solution based on Huawei technology and replace the previous backup solution with a new solution from Commvault.

Capita Technology Solutions's technical and service delivery team worked in close partnership with the university to enable a seamless transition to the new service, moving through a project plan, managing supplier relationships and ensuring minimal disruption to the service prior to go-live in the summer of 2018.

Simone Barbaresi, IT Director at Bangor University describes their situation: “The lead times for equipment, and the university academic year meant the project timescales had to be revised, Capita worked closely with us to add flexibility to the programme plan in line with our academic year and were innovative in supporting our legacy network in the interim, to avoid unnecessary maintenance contract costs.”

Simone explains: “Capita worked closely with the university’s IT infrastructure team to provide the final design, assistance and support in the implementation and integration which allowed the project to progress to production. Working closely with Capita on the project allowed the Bangor IT team to acquire the knowledge required to support the solution when Capita completed their professional services.”

Capita designed and implemented a new tiered storage solution to meet the university’s needs, taking into consideration flexibility to extend storage capabilities as requirements change and student numbers increase.

The backup solution delivers integrated data management, ensuring student and staff data is protected and the university can manage and access as and when required throughout its data lifespan. The solution provides protection of the university’s data, saving time carrying out this as a manual task with the added assurance the data is safe, protected and can be analysed when required.

Key benefits

  • Flexibility - the storage solution offers unprecedented flexibility to the university, with the ability to increase capabilities as their requirements change.
  • Reliability – the support wrap on the storage and backup environment ensures the solution is operating according to SLA’s and delivering the reliable level of service to meet student and staff demands.
  • Value for money – Huawei’s powerful storage and network solution is not only leading edge but provides value for money with less investment required compared to other suppliers.
  • Time savings – with daily monitoring and automatic processes in place, the solution saves the university IT team time, from having to undertake the monitoring of the storage and backup environment themselves.
  • Student experience – having a refreshed and reliable IT network in place, ensures the students data is safe and access to learning resources is seamless, maintaining the student learning experience.
“I see Capita as a key partner in helping the university be agile to the rapidly evolving tools and apps core to the student experience.”

Simone Barbaresi, IT Director at Bangor University, 

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