Tuesday, March 26, 2024

In a colorful commissioning ceremony held at the iconic Taifa Hall, the University commissioned several digitalized initiatives namely; the Electronic Record and Document Management System (EDRMIS), Online Recruitment System and Portal, Financial Management System Upgrade, Virtual Car Sticker Issuance System, and the expansion of campus LAN and Wi-Fi infrastructure.

The comprehensive upgrade plan outlined during the ceremony includes modernizing server hardware, enhancing network infrastructure, and bolstering disaster recovery capabilities, with substantial investments committed to supporting the institution's ongoing digital transformation journey.

Notably, the EDRMIS, having undergone meticulous customization and training sessions, is already revolutionizing document management practices, while the Online Recruitment System seeks to streamline hiring processes, ensuring efficiency and transparency from day one.

Similarly, the Financial Management System's upgrade to Sage 300, coupled with workflow automation, aimed at enhancing financial efficiency and data management, is now actively driving the university's financial operations.

While reflecting on the significance of the digital initiatives, the Director ICT at the University of Nairobi, Mr. Paul Kariuki, emphasized the transformative impact of technology on the institution's operational processes and academic environment. He stated, "Today's ceremonial launch of UON's digitization initiatives was a brilliant success. As part of our cross-cutting strategic plan, we are moving towards a digitally-enabled and technology-driven university." He also underscored the university's commitment to advancing ICT, positioning it as a leader in innovation and ICT adoption among higher education institutions.

The Vice-Chancellor, Prof. Stephen G. Kiama, in his opening remarks, expressed his profound gratitude to the Cabinet Secretary for his invaluable support and participation in the commissioning of the transformative projects. Prof. Kiama highlighted the University's longstanding commitment to digitalization, dating back to the 1990s, and reiterated its dedication to becoming a 21st-century digitally-enabled and technology-driven institution.

Under the leadership of Prof. Kiama, the University has spearheaded a comprehensive digitalization master plan and ICT strategies aimed at enhancing efficiency and competitiveness. The implementation of these strategies has seen the automation of core administrative functions and the establishment of robust digital infrastructure, including a tier 3 Data Centre and campus-wide networks spanning multiple locations.

Prof. Kiama emphasized the University's pivotal role in supporting the Government's Digitalization Agenda, citing its contributions to national efforts to create a paperless working environment and reduce operational costs. He lauded the University's resilience during the COVID-19 pandemic, facilitated by its strong ICT infrastructure and innovative application of digital tools and platforms. The University's investments in digital infrastructure have been substantial, including the establishment of a tier 3 Data Centre, campus-wide networks, smart classrooms, and enhanced security systems. These efforts have not gone unnoticed, as evidenced by the Ministry of ICT and Digital Economy's recognition of the university's digital assessment level at 84.7% in November 2023.

Further, Prof Kiama outlined the University's commitment to continuous improvement, citing ongoing projects aimed at revamping broadband networks, enhancing internet connectivity, and developing smart campus infrastructure. He underscored the importance of collaboration with government and industry partners to drive innovation and provide students with practical learning experiences.

In his keynote address, the Cabinet Secretary, Ministry of Information, Communication and the Digital Economy Hon. Eliud Owalo commended the University for its leadership in embracing digitalization and pledged continued support from the Ministry of ICT and Digital Economy. “I am a beneficiary of the University's E-learning. I am sure you have witnessed the effectiveness and efficiency of all your processes and services” he said.

Hon. Owalo in addition highlighted the Government's initiatives to promote digital inclusion, including the assembly of affordable smartphones and the digitization of government records. “All government records will be fully digitized. 3% of CDF to be used to set up Digital Infrastructure in every County. The Government won't shy away from Digitalization because of Data Privacy and security; it will ensure the safety of data Centres and has invited partnerships from the private sector globally. He echoed.

With a clear vision and collective efforts, the University of Nairobi aims to remain at the forefront of digital innovation, providing world-class education, research, and innovation outputs in an increasingly digital world.

Also present during the ceremony were the Deputy Vice-Chancellor, Academic Affairs Professor Leonida Kerubo, and the Chief Operations Officer Mr. Brian Ouma.

Watch Launch Video