Another successful year in the books! 2022 was a busy and productive year for IT.
Technology touches all our lives every day here at OSCIA. We in IT aim to serve our clients proactively, so that the tools you need to do your work function seamlessly, responsively, and securely when you need them.
Our annual report highlights some of the accomplishments from this passed year.
Network Infrastructure service and licensing improvements
In June of 2022, we completed the on-premises server infrastructure migration to NetFusions Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) platform. (NetFusions promised better service than our previous provider.)
The previous on-premises server hardware reached its end of life and rather than investing in new hardware we decided to transition over to an IaaS platform which eliminated the need to house and maintain servers in the office.
Moving to this new solution we did not incur capital expenditures for new hardware, instead we negotiated a monthly all-encompassing service fee that includes IT front line support, hardware\storage lease, network security firewall as well as multi-factor-authentication (MFA) for added security. To further safeguard our IT environment, this new platform has offered us a secure, reliable, and scalable solution to operate from moving forward.
We were also able to benefit from significant annual savings by transitioning our Microsoft and Adobe licenses to the not-for-profit licensing model.
New OSCIA Website
The website redevelopment project was initiated in response to the resolution brought forward at the 2021 AGM.
Thanks to the collective efforts of staff, membership, and directors we successfully launched our new website in November 2022. Substantial amount of work has gone into this redevelopment, to refresh the look and improve the functionality of the website.
Our goal was to redevelop our website’s infrastructure from the ground up, to start with a new foundation and streamline how our sites operate and interact together. We also completely redesigned the user interface and layout to enhance the online experience.
The focus was put on the following 3 main priorities:
- Improving the performance of the website
- Implementing a new navigation structure
- Providing consistent page design and additional translation as needed between the French and English pages.
Additional priorities identified included revamping our home page; making our site responsive from device to device so that users can access it easily from phones, tablets, and computers; social integration; improving the search functionality; search engine optimization; and improving AODA (Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act) compliance to current standards. We have taken these priorities and have made them the focus of our redesign.
The work will continue to evolve and improve our site to ensure it meets the needs of our visitors.
OSCIA Portal and Program Guide
In preparation for the OFCAF program intake last summer, we successfully launched a new portal https://osciaportal.org/ and Program Guide https://programguides.ontariosoilcrop.org/ to facilitate an online application process.
The fundamental goal of each of these platforms is to be scalable and accessible.
I would like to thank and congratulate our staff for their dedication and all their efforts for completing many initiatives this passed year.