Issue 4 2023

4 The Digital Scaffolding Supporting Successful Universities We’re all aware that many organisations had to make drastic changes to ensure they could still function effectively during COVID-19. Universities were no exception to this change, embracing online learning and making substantial changes to behind the scenes systems. As the education sector continues to embrace technological advancements, universities across the UK are taking steps to improve their overall operational efficiency, and this has a natural focus on digital implementation. A study carried out in 2019 found that compared to the banking sector, universities spent 31% less of their annual budget on technology. However due to the demands to upgrade outdated systems more quickly than expected thanks to COVID-19, by the end of 2021 the Edtech industry is estimated to be worth £3.4 billion. As higher education institutions work towards embracing digital transformation at an organisational level, challenges can arise as it is important that a system suits the unique needs of the individual institution. Microsoft Dynamics 365 Consultants, Pragmatiq, are among the leaders in designing and deploying bespoke business solutions, and recently supported the University of Buckingham in optimising their technological capabilities to better serve their students. Previously, the University of Buckingham operated on a disparate Excel-based system which presented challenges to staff; A lack of mobile capabilities, limitations with reporting, and a strain on recruitment teams due to time-consuming processes. The University recognised it was time to upgrade their digital infrastructure to better support employees, students, and stakeholders. Pragmatiq’s Technical Director, Jamie Evans explains, “By optimising their digital infrastructure, universities can improve their access to key information, increase admission and retention rates, minimise errors, and provide a greater overall service.” By embracing technological advancements and working with Pragmatiq, the University of Buckingham saw a whole host of benefits to every aspect of their organisation. These benefits included improved access to data, a better student onboarding experience, enhanced communication, improved reporting, and a platform with the capabilities for future growth. These changes allow the University to operate with a streamlined approach as they adapt to a cloudbased, centralised solution. Speaking about Pragmatiq’s support, The University of Buckingham said, “Right from the start, Pragmatiq were extremely helpful and worked with us to design and develop a bespoke solution that suited our requirements.” “Throughout the process, the team were responsive, engaging and worked hard to understand our organisation and unique processes. I was particularly impressed by the team’s expertise and professionalism, and we now have a solution that supports various departments within the University and enhances the overall student experience.” As universities across the UK continue to adapt to the ever-evolving digital age, Pragmatiq is well-positioned to help them navigate these changes. By providing innovative tech solutions and expert support, they are helping to ensure that universities can provide the best possible experience for their students.