From education to employment


Resistance to change is today’s most common business and technology related challenge for Academic Institutions around the globe, according to the findings of Marval’s Global Education Survey 2017. Identified as the most common business-related challenge for Academic Institutes by 87% of the responders, resistance to change seems to be a pressing technology-related challenge too, since almost 84% of the responders recognised it as a common technological challenge.

48% believe that alignment with business objectives is a common challenge for their organisation, while almost 47% struggle with managing employee mobility and BYOD/CYOD models.

Key Priorities:

  • Improving the student experience is number one priority for the majority of the Academic Institutes (85%). Organisations in North America and APAC seem to have an increased interest in improving the student experience, compared to other regions. More than 94% of the participants from North America and 100% of those from the APAC region stated that student experience is a key priority, while only 81% of responders from Europe agreed.
  • Student experience is a key priority mainly for mid- and senior IT-related roles. At least 85% of CIOs and Directors or Managers of IT Operations, Infrastructure, Projects and the Service Desk agreed that improving the student experience is a priority. At the same time, only one in two Service Desk Analysts believes that student experience is a priority for their organisation, and the same result came by Senior Management executives (non-IT roles).
  • Satisfying current SLAs stands out as a key priority for responders from Middle East, Africa and Asia.

Business Challenges:

  • Resistance to change is the most common business-related challenge for Academic Institutions (87%).
  • Almost 49% of the participants in the survey believe that collaboration with other departments and functions within the organisation is still a challenge, while more than one in three responders find it difficult to deal with senior management expectations (38%), user expectations (37%) and budget cuts (36%).

Technology Challenges:

  • Identified as the most common business-related challenge, resistance to change seems to be a crucial technology-related challenge too for Academic Institutions. Almost 84% of the responders stated that resistance to change is a technological challenge.
  • 48% believe that alignment with business objectives is a common challenge for their organisation, while almost 47% struggle with managing employee mobility and BYOD/CYOD models.
  • The administration and maintenance of devices and peripherals is a challenge for 46% of responders.
  • The introduction and support of new learning models does not appear to be a major concern for Academic Institutions. Only 10% of responders believe that delivering informal or personalised learning is a challenge, while supporting alternative learning with videos and gamification troubles just 9% of the participants. The delivery of online or mobile learning has the lowest score amongst the responders, with only 6.5% of them considering it a challenge.
  • The least common challenge for the participants in the survey is internet connectivity (5.4%).


  • 85% of the participants believe that Student Experience will affect their organisation within the next 5 years. Another 76% expect to be affected by Employee Mobility and BYOD/CYOD.
  • Data Management/Business Analytics and Governance/Compliance are emerging trends for 47% and 42% of the responders respectively, followed by Data Safety (32%) and Internet of Things (32%).

Service Improvements:

  • 90% of the participants believe that their Self-Service Portal requires improvement. 62% stated that Reporting should be improved, while 45% are not satisfied with their Knowledge Library and 29% with their Change Management process.
  • Real-time reporting is described by 79% of responders as a feature that would benefit Academic Organisations but is not currently available.
  • One in two Senior Management executives would also like to enhance their Service with workflow charts, performance management and change management features.
  • More than 68% of CIOs and IT Directors and 51.5% of Service Desk Directors believe that a Purchase Order (PO) Management feature would be useful.


  • Academic Institutions in APAC have suffered significant budget cuts within the past five years (87.5%), followed by 76.5% in North America.
  • Almost 54% of responders from EMEA replied that their budget was reduced slightly or reduced dramatically.

Jon Lucas, Head of IT Communications & Engagement, University IT Services, University of the Arts London:

“Times are changing in Higher Education, and the resistance to change is just as common as it always has been. In this ever-changing environment, student experience remains a key priority. As technology advances, HE Sector Institutions are having to move faster to keep up with the advancements and what the incoming millennials are going to expect from an IT Services department. With the recent trigger of article 50, Universities are already seeing a reduction in student applications, caused by the uncertainty of Brexit.

This however should not deter any IT department from providing a quality service by using Service Level Management to make sure that the services they offer are the best they can be. At UAL we are also thinking creatively on how we present our services to our user base, since we have found this allows us to engage more with them.”

Greg Pritchett, Managing Director, Marval Software:

“IT Operations in Academic Institutions have reached a new level of maturity, as their role has evolved within the organisation and become the epicentre of the ongoing business transformation process. Despite their extended responsibilities, CIOs seem to feel unsupported in their new roles, lacking either senior management’s support or the technology that would enable them to document and accelerate business decisions, and facilitate change management. As they are entering a highly competitive stage, Academic Organisations need to ensure that their IT Departments are equipped with the tools that will help them build new services to improve the student experience, while managing their resources more effectively.”

Commissioned by Marval Software, a leading provider of ITSM solutions and services, the Global Education Survey 2017 was run in February 2017 to record the current business and technology trends, challenges and expectations in the Education sector, as well as technology advances, techniques and strategies Academic Organisations use to address these challenges and successfully respond to market’s increasing expectations. From the IT executives who participated in the survey, 53% were from EMEA, 37% from North America and 10% from APAC. 36% of the responders are Service Desk Directors/Managers, 24% are CIOs / CISOs / IT Directors/Managers, 16% IT Operations Directors/Managers, 6.5% Project Managers, 6.5% Service Desk Analysts, 2% are Senior Management Representatives and 9% other roles.

About Marval Software: Founded in 1989, Marval Software is a leading provider of ITSM solutions and services that help organisations worldwide reach critical business objectives related to information security, OPEX, knowledge management, as well as customer loyalty and satisfaction.

With its award-winning ITSM platform, Marval MSM, plus a comprehensive portfolio of professional and support services, Marval and its partners design and deploy ITSM and ITIL projects for customers in several industries, including Healthcare, Education, Local and Central Government, Financial Services, Emergency Services, Retail, Telecommunications, and Transport.

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