University of the Highlands and Islands joins SWAN PSN

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Capita IT Enterprise Services has been running the Scottish Wide Area Network service since last year

The University of the Highlands and Islands has joined the Scottish Wide Area Network (SWAN), a single public services network for the use of all public service organisations within Scotland. SWAN is being delivered through a framework contract with Capita IT Enterprise Services.

Since the contract was signed in February 2014, over 3,200 sites and 3,500 circuits have been connected, and a dedicated network and operations centre has been constructed. The team has also received Public Service Network accreditation and has achieved ISO27001, recognising international information security best practice.

capitaThe University of the Highlands and Islands is made up of 13 independent colleges and serves over 40,000 students from over 70 separate learning centres around the Highlands and Islands, Moray and Perthshire. The University is the latest public sector body to sign up to SWAN, and it joins over 50 other organisations that are benefiting from infrastructure and service sharing, which is lowering costs and improving connectivity across the whole public sector in Scotland.

Fiona Larg, chief operating officer and secretary of the University of the Highlands and Islands, said: “The University is a unique higher and further education establishment which operates from a huge number of locations across Scotland, so the strength, resilience and cost-effectiveness of our network is vital.

Joining SWAN will mean that our network is faster and more reliable and will mean that we can benefit from SWAN’s significant economies of scale.”

Peter Hands, executive director of Capita IT Enterprise Services, said: “As increasing numbers of organisations join SWAN, more and more people across the country are experiencing the benefits of a better public sector network.

For the students and staff of the University, this means a stronger network, more value for money and a better connected education.”

Earlier this year outsourcer Capita was selected by NHS England as the preferred bidder to establish a single provider framework for administrative support functions for primary care across the UK. The four year framework has a maximum total value of £1 billion, said Capita.

@AntonySavvas