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U Pittsburgh Automates IT Support

The University of Pittsburgh has signed on with Alloy Software to automate technical support across multiple departments. The deal equips the university's Financial Information Systems (FIS) department with Alloy Navigator, which provides a centralized platform for IT service management. It replaces the department's previous home-grown system.

Alloy Navigator is a suite of tools for streamlining IT operations and improving service and self-service. It also automates various aspects of technical support, including incident reports and other functions.

"Other solutions that we evaluated were either too expensive or inflexible to suit our needs," said John Duska, director of technical services/information security officer for the FIS department at Pitt, in a statement released Monday. "Alloy Navigator gave us the ability to combine all of our service and support processes in one system with a common database. The capability to easily link incidents, problems, changes, and configuration items is a key advantage of Alloy Navigator.

"Since deploying Alloy Navigator, the most valuable benefit of the product is having the ability to centralize all service and support processes into one database," he said. "By combining incident, problem, change and configuration data, we can now manage our support operations much more efficiently. In implementing Alloy Navigator, we were also able to eliminate our proprietary systems that handled these processes individually and were becoming too costly to maintain."

The initial selection of Alloy Navigator came in 2006. Since that time, the Alloy system has become the university's "central management system for all service and support needs," according to Alloy. "The department utilizes Alloy Navigator as its help desk system, computer, and network inventory system; change management database; software licensing system; internal and external knowledge-base; and self-service portal, as well as its main SLA (Service Level Agreement) compliance and reporting tool."

The University of Pittsburgh serves about 34,000 students in 15 undergraduate, graduate, and professional schools. It employs approximately 12,000 staff, including 3,800 full-time faculty. The Financial Information Systems department employs 27 staff.

About the Author

David Nagel is editorial director of 1105 Media's Education Technology Group and editor-in-chief of THE Journal and STEAM Universe. A 29-year publishing veteran, Nagel has led or contributed to dozens of technology, art and business publications.

He can be reached at [email protected]. You can also connect with him on LinkedIn at or follow him on Twitter at @THEDavidNagel (K-12) or @CampusTechDave (higher education).

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