Hello! We are QUEST Farm, a team of undergraduate students representing the Quality Enhancement Systems and Teams (QUEST) honors program. As a part of our introductory class, BMGT190H, last semester we partnered with the Division of Information Technology in order to help raise awareness of DIT’s services. Our team soon realized that the DIT provides a variety of useful IT services such as computer repairs, help over the phone, and a tech shop with competitive prices, all of which students do not take full advantage of. Our first step was to identify where the disconnect between DIT and the students is in order to raise awareness of the services.

In order to gauge current student awareness, we created a survey. This survey had questions to determine if students were aware of the DIT’s services, and if they were, what their experience was. We collected 209 responses from UMD students of various years and majors. According to the survey results, nearly 72% of students refer to Google when faced with an IT problem. Only 6% of students utilized the services offered by the UMD Service Desk. We determined that few students knew of the DIT and its services. We decided that a strategic marketing campaign, specifically for DIT, was needed to promote the free services provided for UMD students.

Our planned marketing campaign includes four phases that would repeat each semester/year. The first phase would be to focus on raising awareness before and at the start of the school year. This includes promoting services through campus tours, orientation, and class syllabi. The second phase would be to increase physical promotion around McKeldin Library and campus. Examples of this would be giving away t-shirts, tabling, and adding footprints in the library to direct students to the Service Desk. The third phase is to boost social media presence and usage. Methods to do so include unifying profile pictures, posting once or twice a day, and following students so they are aware of the accounts. Finally, the fourth phase includes long-term changes to the current system, such as automatic email replies that urge students to use phone and online chat for more prompt responses.

It was a pleasure working with the Division of Information Technology this past semester, and we look forward to seeing how they implement these suggested changes going forward!

QUEST Farm:
Gabrielle Bianchi- Sophomore, Accounting and Information Systems
Stephanie Baylouny- Sophomore, Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering
Dennis Chen- Sophomore, Electrical Engineering
Akshay Guthal- Sophomore, Computer Science
Jacob King- Junior, Information Systems and Operation Management/Business Analytics

Author: 
QUEST Farm team
Published On: 
Saturday, February 25, 2017