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September 09, 2010

Peddie School Deploys Alloy Service Desk Software

By Anuradha Shukla, TMCnet Contributor

Peddie School integrated its campus help desk function to provide users with better service. This move has added an initials savings of $20,000 and has freed up resources to enable the IT department of the New Jersey boarding school to deal with new projects.

The boarding school has a high percentage of students living on campus. It has some unique difficulties that a lot of other high schools don’t have to mull over. Bridget McCrea from the notes Tom Phelan, the school’s director of technology, who said that they have to consider the fact that some students don’t go home after school. They, instead, go to the dormitories of the school, bringing with them their technology needs and challenges.

Phelan also said that 70 percent of their students live on campus. The school is home for these students. It’s not like a day school where parents take on challenges like security and Web access when school is over. This creates a bigger job for Peddie School. It is not an option for the school to simply block access to sites such as Facebook (News - Alert) and others. Phelan added that it’s not fair to prohibit students from using these types of sites. Phelan’s team has made numerous usage policies to make sure that students can surf the Web in a manner that's in keeping with the interests of the students.

The school used several homegrown solutions based on Access and Lotus Notes for IT service desk management until 2008. The systems weren't comprehensive enough. It also didn't scale properly, and needed too much development time to add the functionality needed to improve the school’s help desk.

Phelan built the school's initial help desk software application internally. He was in the process of upgrading it when he realized that an off-the-shelf purchase would save a considerable amount of the development time.

Phelan learned of the Alloy Software help desk and IT asset management solutions at a tech directors' conference.

Anuradha Shukla is a contributing editor for TMCnet. To read more of her articles, please visit her columnist page.

Edited by Juliana Kenny

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