In January 2023, Jeff Grieve joined the University of Guelph (U of G) and the Computing & Communications Services (CCS) team as the interim chief information officer (CIO), with 30+ years of valuable leadership experience in information technology (IT). Prior to his role at U of G, Jeff was the executive director and CIO at the University of Western Ontario (Western).
I’d like to thank you all for the warm welcome to U of G. While I continue to learn about all that you do, this impressive collection of accomplishments gives me a great perspective on not just the scope and depth of work within the IT community, but also of the character of the people performing it. Woven into each section are the intent, the impact and the work ethic practiced by this community.
The U of G IT community has always been a strong partner for the University, enabling and supporting solutions to meet business needs. Today, like many other organizations, U of G has a keen appetite and increasing demand for cloud-based digital transformation to keep the University on the cutting edge, ensure we remain a coveted institution and provide the best possible experience for our students, staff and faculty. With so many different areas within U of G eager to make this shift, it is important to move forward in a unified, strategic and collaborative way.
U of G’s Program Management Office (PMO) was formed in 2018 and has oversight into all IT projects at the University. This allows for greater visibility, more strategic decision making, streamlined processes and reduced duplication of effort across the institution. It also helps to safeguard project success, ensure the right stakeholders are at the table and identify warning signs when projects are at risk. In addition, the PMO supports the U of G IT Governance Council (ITGC) which has ultimate authority over IT policy, procedure and project prioritization at U of G.
Well, we’ve done it again! Another year of excellence amidst a storm of uncertainty. Never in my career has an entire organization (and really, the entire world) had to navigate so much change, both personally and professionally. I am both inspired and proud of just how well the U of G IT community has persevered these past two years.
The U of G IT Strategic Plan is now complete!
Two years in the making and based on consultation and feedback from more than 3,500 University community members, this plan will reimagine the U of G experience for years to come.
The plan is built around five pillars – areas of impact where we wanted to better understand the challenges and opportunities for innovation and design. These pillars are:
The University of Guelph (U of G) is playing a key role in the fight against COVID-19. In partnership with Wellington-Dufferin-Guelph Public Health and the Guelph Family Health Team, U of G opened its COVID-19 vaccination clinic in early March with the ability to vaccinate 2,000 people per day.
What a year 2020 was! There is so much to reflect on, learn from, and celebrate. First and foremost, this year has strengthened the gratitude I feel to be part of the U of G community. The conversations at the senior leadership table have been more difficult compared with years past, but the primary focus never wavered – it remains the mental and physical wellbeing of our students and employees, as well as our collective success.
As you may know, universities, like any large organization, are the target of constant cyber security attacks from a variety of bad actors. This is why our Information Security team proactively monitors our network for signs of attack and are ready to respond should an incident occur.
Question #1: What was your initial transition like? Any gotchas or successes?
Having spent much of my career in a work from home or partial work from home environment and having all our collaboration tools ready the transition was fairly straightforward as far as my remote office setup. It also forced me to improve my knowledge of some of the newer collaboration tools such as Teams and all the capabilities it can provide. My wife Anna had a smooth transition as well as her employer practices remote work testing as part of their BCP planning.