Indiana University Research and Technology Corp. has licensed a search-based, mobile-friendly solution to discovering campus services to OPENCOLLAB, a South African software development company. OPENCOLLAB will market the product, known as One, to other companies, institutions and municipalities.
Faculty, staff and students at Indiana University campuses use One.IU.edu to find campus services like course search, class registration and staff training. It includes hundreds of tiles, each representing one or more services. The tiles are identified by name and category and displayed in a format similar to a mobile app store. Users can search within categories of tasks or by campus affiliation.
Rob Lowden, associate vice president of enterprise systems in the Office of the Vice President for Information Technology, said One.IU.edu was launched in the summer of 2014 to address concerns about the previous process used to search and discover content.
“The effort involved sharing emails with directions in excess of 10 steps to complete a simple task like finding a grade,” Lowden said. “As new content was added, existing users had little to no chance of finding what they wanted.”
Lowden said One leverages search, indexing and other technologies that did not exist as robustly in the early 2000s, when the previous search system was in place. It was launched at all eight Indiana University campuses with more than 100 predefined services.
“Compared to the previous system, we have cut the average time spent by users to search and find what they want by more than 50 percent,” he said. “It demonstrates that interacting with this new, innovative approach is much simpler.”
Martilene Orffer, managing director and CEO at OPENCOLLAB, said she and her colleagues first saw One at Kuali Days presentations in 2013 and 2014.
“The simplicity of One is appealing: a product developed to reduce traditional portal complexity through digital and technological concepts in touch with the accessibility and mobility of a new era. We trust it will see great adoption in Africa,” she said. “We think One is unique. The app-like front end is modern and appeals to smartphone users. The Google-like search functionality allows for quick searching and fast access to endpoint functions without the need to navigate endlessly. The rating-and-feedback system makes the continuous improvement of tasks and services more fluent.”
Orffer said OPENCOLLAB will market One as a solution for companies, institutions and municipalities to provide convenient access to their services.