5 Things Educational Institutions Need to Know About Managed IT Services

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    With the rise in the prevalence of digital technology within schools and universities alike, it is important that educational institutions know their options when it comes to their technological infrastructure and the potential of managed IT services for schools.

    While many educational institutions may not think it’s essential to hire managed IT service specialists, there are various reasons as to why they should. They can drastically improve the quality of experience both students and teachers have when it comes to their use of technology — and this blog will tell you how.

    Here are the top 5 things that educational institutions need to know about managed IT services.

    #1 – They help easily deploy an IT infrastructure

    In order to make sure that students can use technology to enhance their learning without it causing havoc, it’s important to have a strong and efficient information technology infrastructure in place. Even on a day to day basis, there is so much that can derail a lesson or lecture — from a crashing web browser, to the inability to load resources, to slow Wi-Fi connection preventing an educational video from loading.

    Implementing a managed IT service means that the infrastructure can be remotely monitored and managed, with updates deployed when they’re needed, so that there is no need to worry about lessons being disrupted. Schools must implement a solid infrastructure before they move onto integrating more complicated IT services and solutions into their classrooms.

    #2 – They ensure the upkeep of IT maintenance

    Managed IT services for schools are the perfect way to ensure that all maintenance is kept up to date. By implementing this service, you’re ensuring that your school’s servers will remain secure, and that disaster recovery will be on hand should your network experience difficulties.

    While some may baulk at the monthly fees of managed IT services, it’s often worth the investment. You can be sure that your school will have the best support on hand to guarantee that your software and hardware are both properly maintained across the whole infrastructure, and all of your data is securely handled.

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    #3 – They allow for a digital classroom

    In this technological age, it’s no longer acceptable for a classroom to be entirely analogue. From SMARTboards to the use of tablets in the classroom, technology is becoming fully integrated into education. Using IT in lessons is an ideal way to keep students engaged and excited about learning. It can allow for a whole range of activities using not only the online resources available, but also various platforms such as educational apps.

    Managed IT services for schools are an ideal method of making sure that your classrooms are all digitally accessible — from cloud services which ensure that all documents and teaching powerpoints are reachable from each classroom, to managed print services which will allow you to print worksheets with just a touch of a button.

    There is no reason why your classroom shouldn’t be digital — it not only encourages further interaction and engagement with your syllabus, but also gives your students the chance to pick up new technological skills along the way. The world is now increasingly digital, so educational institutions can’t afford to not provide students with the skills and knowledge on how technology can be utilised to further their learning. Students are given their best chance when they’re allowed to use digital technology in the classroom.

    #4 – They keep your IT infrastructure secure

    Cybersecurity is vitally important everywhere, so why would the education sector be any different? Leading research, as well as student and staff data, is stored and updated routinely throughout their schooling career, and without the correct level of maintenance and security, this data is vulnerable. Managed IT services will ensure that regular audits and vulnerability testing is carried out, as well as keeping your firewalls, anti-virus software, anti-malware, and other cybersecurity technology up to date.

    It’s important to check that your compliance and security policies are current and valid, so as not to leave your school vulnerable to cyber attack. Getting added technical support is a positive step towards keeping your data protected and preventing your school’s network from being vulnerable to infiltration and internal and external cyber attacks due to lack of regular maintenance.

    #5 – They can help safeguard students

    Educational institutions must put the safety of their students first, whether that be on or offline. Digital technology may provide invaluable learning resources, but it also exposes the students to the dangers which with careful mitigation can be avoidable.

    While it can be trickier to monitor your students’ online activity, as they may be actively using 3G or 4G networks to avoid detection, the help of Managed IT service providers can be enlisted to guarantee that you are doing all you can to safeguard your students. These services can ensure that harassment in all digital forms on WiFi networks is tracked, and can be shut down as a result.

    Asking a specialist for help in implementing policies surrounding the use of educational WiFi networks and making your students aware that incorrect use of the resource will be flagged up will help to make your school safer. Schools cannot entirely eradicate the risk which digital technology can bring into the classroom — however they must do their best to keep their students as safe as possible.

    Choose the right IT managed services for your needs

    Ultimately, it’s important that you make sure that all of your technological needs are met. From ensuring cybersecurity is effective to maintaining a stable digital infrastructure, the right managed IT specialists will help enable you and your educational institution to maximise the benefits of bringing digital technology into the classroom. It’s all about doing the research to find the right services who can meet your exact needs.

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    Rob Townsend

    Rob is a co-founder at Nexstor and has dedicated his career to helping a range of organisations from SME to Enterprise to get ahead of the game when it comes to their compute, storage and data needs.

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