+ Post New Thread
Results 1 to 8 of 8
General Chat Thread, Would Heads really react favourably to an email like this? in General; Is it time to write to your head teacher about budget cuts? - Microsoft UK Schools blog - Site Home ...
  1. #1

    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    London
    Posts
    1,254
    Thank Post
    111
    Thanked 242 Times in 193 Posts
    Blog Entries
    1
    Rep Power
    74

    Would Heads really react favourably to an email like this?

    Is it time to write to your head teacher about budget cuts? - Microsoft UK Schools blog - Site Home - MSDN Blogs

    I'm in two minds... It's almost as if it assumes the IT team are so isolated from the rest of the school they need to market their services as though they were an external vendor.. Or is this just me?

    Also schools that have IT services such that 15000K per annum savings could be made through virtualisation are surely already are using it. School that aren't probably don't spend much more than that **in total** each year...? I'm not really in the mood to do a full analysis but I would be interested to know if I'm off kilter with my reaction to this...

  2. #2

    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    London
    Posts
    3,154
    Thank Post
    114
    Thanked 527 Times in 450 Posts
    Blog Entries
    2
    Rep Power
    123
    The letter really needs to be written so that it matches the school's actual situation - copying and pasting someone else's letter would not go down well (even if it is a good letter by Ray!)

    It does no harm to remind a head why you're there and if you can say "look, we can do x, y, z which will cost xx but could save yy per year" then it has to be a good thing. IT is almost always seen as something which costs a school money - this isn't going to go away but if a small investment (buying print management software) can save a large amount then it has to be a good thing to look at.

  3. #3
    rayfleming's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Reading - at Microsoft HQ UK
    Posts
    92
    Thank Post
    13
    Thanked 66 Times in 32 Posts
    Rep Power
    32
    As I was writing it (the letter), I was in two minds as well - there's always a risk that it's simply going to come across as irrelevant or patronising. But having spent enough time talking about these kind of issues with both IT managers and school leaders, there's definitely a disjoint in some schools. And yes, some schools will already have taken some or all of the steps I've talked about, but not everybody. I was with a college leadership team last week, and when we were talking about savings through server virtualisation, it turned out they had 100 servers, and not a single one virtualised. So for everybody that's done something to reduce cost, I think there's another who might find the discussion useful.

  4. #4
    gshaw's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Essex
    Posts
    2,650
    Thank Post
    164
    Thanked 217 Times in 200 Posts
    Rep Power
    66
    Although the letter is good are a lot of IT teams so isolated from management that this feedback hasn't already been discussed? One of the things we've done here is to make sure people know what we're doing \ planning and why so there's no big surprises when it comes to project work etc. We also make ourselves very visible and responsive so people know we're there... really helps to create a positive perception of IT rather than the classic "geek in the cupboard" view you get when watching The IT Crowd

  5. Thanks to gshaw from:

    srochford (27th October 2010)

  6. #5

    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    London
    Posts
    1,254
    Thank Post
    111
    Thanked 242 Times in 193 Posts
    Blog Entries
    1
    Rep Power
    74
    The need to take that approach to a piece of writing is not something I have encountered before. I have always worked for superb non technical managers who expect a high level of communication and allow a good degree of freedom to deliver. Just luck I guess.

    However that letter is very well written and indicates depth of thought that should get the attention of a head who has previously been taking the techie in the cupboard for granted.

    The question is: would the techie who sends this understand the importance of some of the implied contextual analysis that has gone into its writing? Because it is that, rather than specific pieces of tech, which is needed to drag the ICT service in many school into the twenty first century.

  7. #6

    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    Christchurch
    Posts
    12
    Thank Post
    2
    Thanked 6 Times in 1 Post
    Rep Power
    16
    I think be it a letter or a conversation with the leadership team these are times when we should all show willing to try to save money and virtualization is the perfect way to go about this. Not only will you save on power costs but also server replacement, air conditioning costs and also licencing costs. I would be more than willing to talk with people about how this can be achieved. (sorry if this sounds like an ad for Microsoft)

    Dave

  8. #7
    arichards's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Chigwell
    Posts
    14
    Thank Post
    0
    Thanked 4 Times in 3 Posts
    Rep Power
    13
    I can see the point that people are making about IT not being isolated in Schools and with any luck discussion on how IT can save the School money have been ongoing. Unfortunatley though we are all about to have our 'belts tightened' significantly and IT is an obvious place to save money by simply cutting the budget, which helps no one. I think what this letter does is give you the opportunity to put something in front of your head which explains that IT can save money for the School without simply cutting the budget.

    As well as virtualisation which from experience will save you money its also about showing the head that 'smarter' use of IT can reduce paper usage, photocopying, printing, postage and ultimatley the Schools carbon footprint. Whether you use the letter as a conversation starter or as an actual letter (altered to suit your School) I think its an excellent starting point.

    I am one of the lucky ones where the School invested heavily over the last 3 years and now we are starting to see the benefits in long term cost savings both using virtualisation and our latest paperless School project. Like Dave I don't want to sound like I'm advertising Microsoft products but if anyone wants to discuss further or see what we are doing then just let me know.

    Alan

  9. #8

    tmcd35's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    Norfolk
    Posts
    5,620
    Thank Post
    845
    Thanked 883 Times in 731 Posts
    Blog Entries
    9
    Rep Power
    326
    Alas my Head is a little too on the ball and we've already had the "how can we cut cost in IT spending?" conversation so a letter is not going to help me much this year. One question I would ask is - how much IT budgeting is just an annual thing? Only visited once a year when your trying to get as much as you can off him in April?

    For me the ICT budget plan is a constant work in progress that I'm working on with the head and others through out the year so come April the t's are crossed and the i's are dotted and we all know where we stand for the coming year.

SHARE:
+ Post New Thread

Similar Threads

  1. [Video] Bloke's trousers react to a bang
    By mattx in forum Jokes/Interweb Things
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 26th February 2010, 01:54 PM
  2. Getting a batch file to react to a registry key
    By Wheelgunr in forum Windows
    Replies: 5
    Last Post: 12th September 2008, 05:23 PM
  3. Heads up
    By Face-Man in forum General Chat
    Replies: 29
    Last Post: 8th March 2006, 11:56 AM

Thread Information

Users Browsing this Thread

There are currently 1 users browsing this thread. (0 members and 1 guests)

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •