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University of Michigan
News for Faculty and Staff

October 20, 2014

Project Horizon to streamline ITS service offerings

October 22, 2013

Project Horizon to streamline ITS service offerings

Topic: Campus News

Information and Technology Services has introduced several new products and services during the past year with more to come. But as challenging as it is to roll out new offerings, deciding which existing services should remain can be even more difficult.

“We have a bunch of old systems that are getting little or no investment,” explains Bill Wrobleski, program director of infrastructure projects for ITS. “As a result, they are obsolete and, frankly, on their last legs.”

That’s where Project Horizon comes in.

The initiative, which kicked off in April, will identify and eventually replace or retire outdated and little-used services. The goal is to deliver a portfolio of IT products that better meets the changing needs of the university community.

According to Wrobleski, the key objectives of the project are:

• Reduce customer confusion caused by redundant products and services.

• Improve the quality of ITS services by moving to standardized offerings.

• Help reduce operational costs by retiring redundant or obsolete systems.

The project team recently completed its evaluation and will soon begin to communicate specific service changes to the U-M community.

A Horizon Service Reference Table provides an overview of which services are included in Project Horizon, their status, details of what will happen to the service, actions customers need to take, and new service rates.

The estimated end date for Project Horizon extends into 2015, so any changes will not be immediate.

“This process will take quite a while,” says Wrobleski. “The project will have a generous timeline, plus lots of communications and transition resources to help minimize the impact to the community.”

In addition to Project Horizon, there are several other ITS services that are going through the retirement process or have been recently retired, including Lyris listserver, UM Wireless Network, Virtual Firewall, and Connected Backup. These retirements are being handled separately from Project Horizon due to timing and/or logistical requirements.

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