OIT Services in the Spotlight: Data Operations and Data ArchitectureSep 23, 2020
What is the Data Operations and Data Architecture (DODA) team within the Office of Information Technology (OIT) doing this fall semester? I recently had the opportunity to sit down with Chris Edmundson, program manager, and learned that his team is behind the scenes of everything we do as students, faculty, and staff. Working across the various CU campuses, there is not a department they don’t know, which is what makes them so unique.
The DODA team’s services include ensuring our safety and functionality on campus with Single Sign On (SSO) which enhances security and increasing productivity by providing a fast and easy approach to personal authentication. They use software applications that allow for multi-factor authentication (MFA) when signing on to CU resources and some software including the university’s VPN, virtual desktops and applications and most recently, Microsoft 365 applications – which helps protect our personal information as well as the university’s data.
Additionally, the team provides business intelligence support services to many departments universitywide and data integration services. This means they are providing data feeds of source system data for consumption by a software or vendor (via Application Programming Interface (API) endpoints, flat file, and other custom integrations). Another interesting initiative DODA is working on includes how the university evaluates what keeps students here and coming back as alumni and supporters after their CU journey has ended. Data analysts can then measure these aspects in mass to maintain CU Denver and Anschutz Medical Campus relationships.
Data for these services need to be both analyzed and stored. This team provides data warehousing – a fast and secure centralized repository for storing and accessing data for reporting and data analysis – as well as application and database administration. The team oversees the infrastructure needed to support, maintain, and monitor growing data needs and usage including the infrastructure utilized by OIT’s Identity Management & Middleware (MIDM) team.
From application and database administration to providing insight to data valuable for the growing business needs, the Data Operations and Data Architecture team must be at the ready. By now, everyone who comes to campus is familiar with the new COVID Attestation app. This app is maintaining the healthy and safe environment that is CU Denver and the Anschutz Medical Campus by contact tracing and constantly checking in on students, faculty and staff health. Data integration, organization, analyzation, and monitoring of accessibility is crucial work that is done by this department.
Edmundson has been with CU for nine years, two with the Systems office before joining OIT. His 23 years of experience has prepared him for this new era of creative and constantly changing work. The DODA team finds themselves spending a great deal of time currently working on COVID-19 data analytics. Edmundson says “the work has changed some but this team has risen to the occasion” and as a university, we all depend on their support and understanding of growing data needs.
Services in the Spotlight is a series of articles highlighting teams within the Office of Information Technology. OIT has been instrumental in helping move exciting initiatives forward and impacting success for the university. For an overview of more services and resources offered by the department, watch the CU Productions video on our YouTube channel or visit our website: oit.ucdenver.edu.