On Sep 2, 2014, at 11:39 AM, Brad Coffield wrote:
> Hi all,
> I would love to hear from people about what sort of setup they have
> regarding linkage/collaboration/constrictions/freedom regarding campus-wide
> IT practices and CMS usage and the library website.
> I'm hoping that I can get some responses from you all that way I can
> informally say "of x libraries that responded y of them are not firmly tied
> to IT." (or something to that effect) I'm also very curious to read
> responses because I'm sure they will be educational and help me to make our
> site better.
> THE QUESTION:
> What kind of setup does your library have regarding servers, IT dept
> collaboration, CMS restrictions, anything else? I imagine that there are
> many unique situations. Any input you're willing to provide will be very
> welcome and useful.
So, rather than answer the question (as I don't work for a library), but
I worked in central IT for a university for ~7 years:
If you're going to consider using central IT for your infrastructure,
ask them what sort of service guarantees they're willing to provide.
This is typically called a 'Service Level Agreement', where they
spell out who's responsible for what, response times, acceptable
downtime / maintenance windows, etc. It may include costs, but that
may be a separate document.
Typically, the hosted solutions are best when you've just got a few pages
that rarely get updated (once a year or so); if you're pulling info from a
database to display on a website, most shared solutions fall flat on their
face. They might have a database where you could store stuff to make
data-driven web pages, but they rarely are flexible enough to interface
with some external server.
So, anyway ... it doesn't matter what other schools do if your IT dept.
can't provide the services you need. If they *can* provide it, you need
to weight costs vs. level of service ... the cost savings may not be
worth it if they regularly take the server down for maintenance at times
when you need it.