A Look Back

Last updated: February 7, 2023

University of Washington Fountain, UW information technology, 2021 UW-IT Year in Review

Reflecting on UW-IT accomplishments in 2021

UW-IT continued to provide critical support to the University community during a second year of the pandemic, and played an important role in the community returning to campus in the fall. Read on to see some of our projects during 2021.

UW-IT support during pandemic and return to campus

Supporting academic and business continuity with robust technology tools remained a top priority during 2021 to ensure the continuation of remote teaching and learning and work, even after the transition back to campus in September.

Zero Errors campaign supports accessibility

UW-IT led a Zero Errors campaign to reduce — or eliminate — accessibility errors from UW websites and other digital resources by using accessibility checkers, color checkers, assistive technologies and multiple other accessibility resources.

Leveraging lessons learned to improve digital learning experienceUW-IT joined the Tri-Campus Digital Learning Alliance to combine the skills and talents across the UW’s three campuses and take what was learned during the pandemic to coordinate and shape the tools and pedagogy for digital learning.

Vaccination requirement, Title IX support

UW-IT partnered with several other UW offices to ensure the quick deployment of online capabilities to upload and collect documents to show proof of vaccination or exemptions and track compliance with vaccination requirements. UW-IT also developed the reporting capabilities to ensure compliance with Title IX training requirements.

2021 stats for UW-IT customer service requests

100K help requests for FY 2021, 24 seconds for average call hold time, 1 hour average email response time.

Inclusive, welcoming content on websites

A new inclusive language guide developed by UW-IT offers guidelines for replacing racist, sexist, ageist, ableist, homophobic or otherwise non-inclusive language in online materials and resources referencing software and information technology. The guide was part of a project to identify and replace problematic words that might reflect bias or prejudice on UW Connect, IT Connect, Inside UW-IT, and the UW-IT organizational site.

Wired and wireless tech installed throughout the UW

Multiple facilities received updated technology infrastructure with wired and wireless network connectivity from UW-IT. More than 200 new Wi-Fi access points were installed at UW Medicine as part of an ongoing project to modernize its communications, and more than 650 Wi-Fi access points were installed throughout the University.

Major IT infrastructure upgrades serve UW and beyond

Cost-effective, high-speed network connectivity for the entire UW community received a boost with dozens of upgrades during 2021, including key improvements at the Westin Building Exchange, which allowed UW-IT to continue to provide high levels of service to the Pacific Northwest Gigapop and the K-20 Education network, which serve Washington state and beyond.

UW community, we hear you

More than 80 percent of about 5,500 respondents in the 2021 Customer Experience Survey reported an overall positive experience with the services, communications and support provided by UW-IT. Findings from the survey are expected to shape how UW-IT will continue to improve its services across all three campuses.

Expanded use of 2FA by all staff helps reduce risk

To better protect personal and institutional data, UW-IT partnered with unit leaders across the UW to expand the use of two-factor authentication (2FA) by all staff when they sign in on the web to resources that require a UW NetID and password.

Updating online course catalog made easier

A new version of the UW general catalog for all three campuses was completed in the fall, allowing academic units to update and maintain their general catalog information more directly, and faster. The new system is more streamlined, easier to update and user friendly.

Big strides toward transitioning finance systems in UWFT

2021 marked a key year for UW Finance Transformation, which seeks to build an infrastructure to support a single source of trusted, timely, reliable financial information. UW-IT held a Workday Technical Conference to assist technologists across the UW to learn and prepare their systems for Workday. UW-IT also supported changes toward a more connected, integrated program, and continued work on all the technological pieces involved in retiring about half of 900 independent finance systems to Workday Finance with hundreds of integrations.