Challenge - Kent State University—ranked by the Carnegie Foundation as one of the top 77 public research universities in the United States—encompasses seven campuses in Ohio with additional facilities in the region as well as in New York City and Florence, Italy. Enrolled at the university are more than 41,000 undergraduates and 5,500 graduate students, coming from all 50 states and 100 countries.
To put Kent State’s vision as a community of change agents as well as the university’s commitment to technology into action, Vice President for Information Services and CIO, Dr. Ed Mahon, along with Executive Director of Systems Development Services, Coleen Santee, PMP, have prioritized new programs that rely on agile development and cloud-based services. To that end, Kent State tested OutSystems by building two applications designed to improve the experience of students who live on campus as well as to streamline workflows related to information requests and approvals. The first app enables students to self-register their wireless smart devices onto the university’s secure Wi-Fi system. The second app replaces a paper process, enabling students to easily request and apply for various services at the university. Both of these applications—developed on OutSystems —served as a proof of concept, demonstrating that Kent State could rapidly develop and deploy new apps to benefit students, professors and administrators. Today with OutSystems, Kent State is delivering applications at a rate of approximately 10 per quarter.
The high volume of requests for new applications at Kent State University, ninety percent of which are workflow related, had resulted in long delays in their delivery. Sameer Jaleel, Director of Platforms & Integration Solutions at Kent State University, sought a new approach to address this issue. According to Jaleel, the solution must offer “canned applications” or modules that allow the reuse of code. This would speed up development and deployment of applications, resulting in shorter wait times and better customer service.
It would also enable his team to focus its resources on innovation rather than on repeatedly hand coding basic tasks. Jaleel investigated OutSystems and learned about their Platform that provides a rapid development process that:
- Provides a library of basic applications – enabling the reuse of modules to build more complex applications
- Quickly validates an application’s usability – through swift prototyping
- Enables instant feedback – leading to improved iterations
Seeing how closely OutSystems matched the needs at Kent State, Jaleel recommended the university select the Platform.
The OutSystems Advantage
The first part of the mission of Kent State University is to discover, create, apply and share knowledge. OutSystems empowers Kent State to rapidly build, test and deploy new applications—applications that enable students, faculty and administrators to use technology to achieve that mission.
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