London School of Economics and Political Science selects iomart Hosting as first specialist outsource partner
World renowned academic institution’s new website infrastructure managed by iomart hosting
The London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE) has taken the major step of outsourcing its presence on the internet. It believes it is the first higher education establishment in the UK to use an external provider to host its institutional website.
Traditionally, universities have tended to keep their website in-house but with LSE implementing a new content management system (CMS) and launching a new and improved website; it decided that it was necessary to work with a specialist managed hosting partner to guarantee the availability of its online presence.
iomart Hosting (www.iomarthosting.com) which owns and operates its own resilient network of five UK data centres, co-designed, built, and maintains a hardware platform that supports LSE’s website on fully secure servers located away from LSE’s London campus.
Stephen Emmott, head of web services in LSE’s communications department said: “Like most universities we have managed and hosted our institutional website on-site. In recent years we -including our colleagues in LSE’s IT Services- have come to the view that the level of service we require, particularly 24/7/365 availability, requires the services of an external supplier. We need to ensure that if there were any on-site problems, for instance with power, it wouldn’t affect the use of our website. It’s a good example of how the boundaries between academic institutions and the commercial sector can be developed into mutually beneficial relationships.”
iomart Hosting, also developed with the LSE on a full project plan which included the complex migration of the website, ensuring that there was no disruption to the 400 web editors, or downtime to the 100,000 pages and 350 subsites.
Angus MacSween, CEO at iomart Hosting said: “A lot of academic institutions tend to host their websites using their own data centres or computer rooms. The broad appeal and worldwide demand for LSE’s content and services - publications, video, web and pod casts – suggested that the website needed to be managed externally rather than internally to accommodate bandwidth usage, traffic management and 24/7 monitoring.”
The decision by LSE to have its new website www.lse.ac.uk hosted externally has enabled improvement in reliability and functionality. As a result, this has allowed it to increase the wealth of information it can now offer to both students and the wider population.
Stephen Emmott added:”Turning to iomart Hosting has proved very successful. Their expertise in offering individual solutions to a range of private and public sector clients combined with our own in-house teams’ expertise has enhanced our capability and capacity to deliver. This is especially so given the support we have had from our own IT services department without whose support outsourcing would not have been viable.
“The outcome is a bigger and more reliable website that has a secure online presence, which opens further our academic expertise to the world. In part this has been possible because iomart Hosting has been prepared to go the extra mile for us when necessary to resolve the challenges that come with the web and outsourcing generally.”
Angus MacSween added: “We are extremely proud of the fact that LSE, with its world famous reputation for academic excellence, selected iomart Hosting as its first website hosting outsource partner. Day-to-day collaboration between the two organisations is proving the perfect client/specialist partner relationship model, with LSE free to concentrate on the website content and iomart Hosting focused on ensuring the site remains online and available 24/7.We look forward to continuing to serve and work with LSE in the years to come.”
Notes to editors:
1. About the LSE
The London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE) is one of the foremost social science universities in the world. It is a specialist university with an international intake and a global reach. Its research and teaching spans the full breadth of the social sciences, from economics, politics and law to sociology, anthropology, accounting and finance and, as the 2008 Research Assessment Exercise found, it has the highest percentage of world-leading research of any university in the UK.
Founded in 1895 by Beatrice and Sidney Webb, LSE has an outstanding reputation for academic excellence. Fourteen Nobel Prize winners in economics, literature and peace have been either LSE staff or alumni.
The School has just under 90,000 registered alumni. As of February 2009, around 32 past or present heads of state have studied or taught at LSE, and 28 members of the British House of Commons and 42 members of the House of Lords have either studied or taught at LSE. For more information visit: www.lse.ac.uk
2. About iomart Hosting
iomart Hosting is one of the UK’s leading providers of hosting services. From a single server through to private cloud networks, iomart specialises in the delivery and management of mission-critical hosting services, enabling customers to reduce the costs, complexity and risks associated with maintaining their own web and online applications.
By physically owning and managing its own network infrastructure, including five state-of-the-art data centres in the UK, it offers world-beating levels of service to its customers.
For more information visit www.iomarthosting.com
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