There are lots of professional services teams across 22 Schools within the University. Every staff member involved has a sphere of influence along with their own individual knowledge. If we can use technology to make it easier to encourage effective collaboration and communication which spans across the whole University structure, then I think we can work more effectively as a whole.

Often expertise learnt in another support team could be leveraged elsewhere. Although each support team has a different focus, we’re all working within the same policies and similar processes. We don’t know if others have already solved a common problem, because it is difficult to obtain that awareness.

I’ve seen mailing lists used, such as the IT Professionals Forum general discussion list. Example questions that have been asked there this year include:   Q. Has anyone had experience of running a Shiny Server install?   Q. Does anyone know of any SAS experience elsewhere in the University?    Q. Can anyone recommend an automated testing tool?

However, other questions could be:   Q. Does anyone have an effective way to complete module allocation?   Q. How do you organise student data for board of examiners meetings?

Perhaps the best example of a Q&A site would be This innovation proposal seeks to implement something similar to help staff share knowledge and best practice. Thankfully there are already free, open source Q&A systems (e.g. Askbot) which can be installed locally and customised relatively easily.

Ultimately knowledge sharing is about people, so this isn’t going to be a case of “if you build it, they will come.” In order to be a success volunteers in many support teams will need to contribute as community champions to help answer the first questions.


Budget: 35 days total - [ 23 days (66%) in 2015/16 and 12 days (34%) in 2016/17 ]

Resources: IS Applications staff

Current project status

Report Date RAG Budget Effort Completed Effort to complete
July 2016 BLUE 0.0 days 0.0 days 0.0

Project Info

Q&A site to share knowledge for professional & support staff
IS Innovation - Applications (API)
Project Manager
Adam Wheavil
Project Sponsor
Jo Craiglee
Current Stage
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