RMIT moves to Office 365

The university completed the transition of staff and faculty users to Office 365 in late 2018, and all student accounts were this month moved over.

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The Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology (RMIT) has announced shifting its staff and students to Office 365 in a bid to support the university's digital transformation ambitions.

The move involved 11,500 staff and faculty shifting to O365 at the end of last year and 90,000 students in the first week of March making the transition.

In a message to users about the move to Office 365, RMIT said that it supports its "Ready for Life and Work" strategic plan by "providing our students and staff with clearer, smarter, simpler systems, and more ways to collaborate".

"A key plank of our strategy through to 2020 is our commitment to innovation to create excellent learning, collaboration, and work environments for the whole RMIT community," RMIT chief information officer Paul Oppenheimer said.

"We want our students to have access to a rich and immersive digital experience; one that uses technology to enhance creativity and collaboration, and provides the foundation for simpler, quicker, and more reliable operations."

According to Microsoft, initial discussions with the university focussed on the migration to Office 365 as a way to consolidate and simplify its email and voice communications.

It has since extended to Microsoft 365, encompassing all of Office 365, Windows 10, and enterprise mobility and security, the tech giant explained, looking also at integrating Teams with its Canvas Learning Management System to allow better communication between students and lecturers.

Microsoft said RMIT's project is the largest Microsoft 365 Advanced A5 deployment so-far in Australia.

"This is an important strategic move for RMIT as it allows them to work more collaboratively, streamline operations, and at the same time reduce their support costs and annual licensing costs," Microsoft Australia director of education Steven Miller added. "There are also significant security benefits for RMIT through its adoption of Microsoft 365 which helps to rein in the risk of data loss."

The announcement follows Microsoft last month opening a new technology centre in Sydney, with the idea to work with Australian organisations to accelerate digital transformation, focusing specifically on the impact that cloud and artificial intelligence (AI) can make in both the public and private sectors.

"This is a significant and important investment by Microsoft in the Australian market," Microsoft Australia managing director Steven Worrall said at the time. 

"The Microsoft Technology Centre will help our customers accelerate their digital journeys by bringing together the right resources -- people and technology -- in one location to demonstrate what can be achieved in their organisation and then to work with them to bring that to life."

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