Dalhousie University bets its collaborative future on Microsoft Office 365

Dalhousie University bets its collaborative future on Microsoft Office 365 
Leverages power of the cloud to drive efficiencies, focus on core competencies 
and hold the line on costs 
MISSISSAUGA, ON, April 11, 2013 /CNW/ - Dalhousie University, one of Canada's 
top research-intensive institutions, is leading the way again as it initiates 
an aggressive project to adopt Microsoft Office 365 for its entire community 
of students, faculty and staff. With 20,000 students, over 1,000 professors 
and another 5,000 staff, the university's shift to Office 365 for its 
communication, productivity and collaboration needs ranks as one of the more 
significant cloud deployments in the Canadian education space to-date, and 
promises to revolutionize Dalhousie's ability to deliver world class education 
to an ever more diverse and demanding audience. 
"This is the best possible news for the university because it'll allow us to 
focus more on the core benefits and roles of the university rather than having 
to focus on the day-to day services that our stakeholders demand," says Dwight 
Fischer, Assistant Vice President and CIO. "Office 365 frees our Information 
and Technology Services division to deliver collaboration tools at a level far 
beyond what we'd otherwise be able to do internally." 
Fischer says Office 365 lets the university meet intensifying demand for more 
integrated services over a rapidly proliferating range of online and mobile 
platforms. Fast-growing remote-campuses are further driving distance education 
needs. Against that backdrop, Office 365 fills in a number of gaps in ways no 
other solution can match. Fischer says only Office 365 gets Dalhousie this 
amount of functionality, within a reasonable timeframe, while reining in costs. 
"We lack true collaborative tools in our existing environment. While we do 
have a learning management system in place, we don't have across-the-board 
unified communication tools, video, voice, instant message or availability 
awareness," says Fischer. "We need better document collaboration and common 
calendaring between all areas of the university. Lync, SharePoint and Outlook, 
in particular, address these needs in a scalable, secure and manageable way. 
We also need a fully integrated experience that encompasses the full suite of 
collaborative tools that students are using today. Office 365 meets our 
multiple needs." 
Office 365 for Education - which includes secure tools such as email and 
calendaring, instant messaging and web conferencing, online file storage and 
sharing, Office Web Apps and connectivity from virtually any device or 
platform - changes the game on a number of levels, all without compromising 
ITS's ability to meet current messaging, productivity and collaborative needs. 
"Office 365 is indeed best-of-breed technology, but it's only the start," says 
Shann McGrail, Microsoft Canada's National Director, Education Customer 
Segment. "Partnership is what allows multidisciplinary institutions like 
Dalhousie to truly realize the transformational value of their investment, and 
industry-leading partnership is what Microsoft brings to the table. No one is 
as committed to serving the needs of the education space as we are." 
Dalhousie is initiating a multi-phased implementation plan that will 
ultimately save it upwards of $1.8 million over the next three to five years 
in reduced data center, operations and capital acquisition costs. 
ABOUT DALHOUSIE UNIVERSITY
Founded in 1818 in Halifax, NS, Dalhousie is a premier research-driven 
institution, offering 4,000 classes in over 180 degree programs, and 
conducting $140 million in funded research annually. 
ABOUT MICROSOFT
Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq "MSFT") is the worldwide leader in 
software, services and solutions that help people and businesses realize their 
full potential. 
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ST: Ontario
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-0- Apr/11/2013 16:00 GMT
 
 
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