Commercial Services IT
The Commercial Services IT team manages IT equipment, software and services and for the three departments that make up the Commercial Services group across both the Canterbury and Medway campuses and their customers at the University of Kent:
Commercial Services Departments:
Our primary location, all our services are offered across the whole campus to all three departments and their customers.
Since 2005 when the campus opened, we have supported equipment and personnel on the Medway campus. This has grown to include:
- ID card production
Key areas of responsiblilty:
ID Card production and proximity technology
ID card production has grown from two machines in Tanglewood to seven card desks in three locations across two campuses. The production team now produce 15,000 ID cards annually. The IT team are responsible for licensing, installation, configuration and maintenance of the card desks. The card production system database interfaces with many other services on campus such as Student records, Human Resources, access control, the identitfy manager and Library systems.
The cards currently contain Mifare proximity technology and from 2016 will move to Desfire EV1. The IT team are responsible for managing and maintaining this technology as it is used in many departments for a variety of reasons such as:
- Access control
- Library lending
- Cashless services
- Sports membership
Accommodation and conferencing software - Kx
The accommodation and conferencing software is used by many departments across campus in addition to the receptions, housekeepers, chefs and administrators who work in Kx every day there are many others who need access such as:
- Campus Security
- College Masters
- Student Finance
The database server has to interact with the web module server, student records, admissions and central finance all of which are managed by the IT team.
The majority of the student accommodation are now fitted with electronic locks. The IT team are responsbile for the creation and maintenance of master and submaster keys in use by housekeepers and maintenance staff, the procurement and configuration of proximity key fobs, and in partnership with the Estates department the day to day maintenance of the database and its functions.
IT equipment and mobile devices
The three departments of Comercial Services employ hundreds of staff and require hundreds of dekstop computers, laptops, tablets and mobile phones all of which are procured, installed and maintained by the IT team.
IT equipment is issued on a case by case basis, however here is a list of equipment and circumstances when we would normally issue it.
These are Issued as standard to all staff with a permanent desk area and a computing need.
VOIP phones, (voice over IP)
Telephone technology is moving to computer network infrastructure, these are issued where possible however older analogue phones may still be used.
Available on request, subject to availability.
Android based Wi-Fi connected tablets are issued as standard to housekeeping supervisors. Available to others on request where there is a significant business need.
Android based smartphones are issued as standard to housekeeping supervisors, handy people, and managers on request where there is significant business need.
Issued where this is a significant need, mostly limited to managers and senior staff.
Printers are provided as necessary; colour printing is only available where absolutely necessary. University recommendations are that a minimum quantity of equipment is made available and that this does not need to be local to the end user. Colour printing is significantly more expensive that mono and should be discouraged as should all printing unless absolutely necessary.
e.g. mouse mat, wrist rest, footrest etc. can be ordered from the stationery catalogue and are not supplied by IT.
Issued by business need, while areas should be equipped for maximum capacity, every effort should be made to minimise costs and idle equipment.
Credit card terminals.
Issued on a case by base basis in agreement with the finance office. Credit card terminals have a monthly recurring cost associated with them.
Expected lifespans of standard equipment are listed here:
Desktop PC: 5 years
Laptop: 2-3 years.
Tablet: 2-3 years.
Mobile phone: 2 years
Warranty and maintenance
Extended warranties are not purchased as standard. Where equipment breaks outside of standard warranties and before expected end-of-life: this will be replaced as part of the 20%-50% of equipment replaced each year as part of the annual cycle.
If you would like additional IT equipment, please contact your manager or the IT team.
Electronic Point of Sale - EPOS
The IT team manage and maintain 67 EPOS tills across both major campuses, which provide acurate financial, stock and cashless information
On campus partnerships
Our EPOS systems and cashless services are some of the best available, as such other areas of campus have joined with us to use this technology. We currently have agreements to supply tills and/or cashles services in the following departments.
- Sports: Pavillion cafe
- Student Union: Essentials and Parkwood Essentials
- Estates: Print Unit and Parking desk
- Library: Welcome desk and Core Texts.
- Blackwells bookshop.
The IT team supports conferences by assisting with: wifi configuration, audio visual equipment, loan equipment and expertise wherever required to both the Canterbury and Medway campuses.
We have provided German national broadcast television through a specially installed satellite system to guests during the 2012 Olympics, resolved connection issues with guests emails to institutions in the USA and configured wifi connections on a variety of computers running every language and keyboard imaginable.
In addition there are approximately 300 televisions in bedrooms across the University for the benefit of resident students and conference guests. The service started in 2012 and has expanded each year since in which we install, maintain and license these campus bedroom televisions.
As one of the most challenging and rewarding parts of the teams duties, we help ensure any conference at the University of Kent is a successful one.
Other areas of responsibility
- Customer service and support
- Network printing and copying
- Management, planning and budgeting
- Team management
- Server Maintenance
- IT standards and security
- Televisions and Licensing
- Laundrette Services
- Departmental software packages
- Departmental servers
- Website maintenance
- IT standards and security
We are also happy to assist in any project that is for the benefit of our departments or the University as a whole.
You can contact us at commercialservicesIT@kent.ac.uk, telephone 3755.