An Australian Higher Education Provider hired Outcomex to design and implement wireless services, including Cisco Access Points, and CMX and ISE solutions indoor and outdoor within their campuses and students’ accommodation. The solution made the university’s wireless environment safer, faster and more reliable, while increasing its coverage, leading to more innovative and higher quality education outcomes.

Client

Our client is an Australian public university counting several campuses. Since 2012, this education provider has consistently ranked among the world’s top 400 universities by the Times Higher Education World University Rankings. The multicultural and student-focused university boasts over 50,000 students, and has an international reputation for quality research that connects science and technology with business and the community. For over a century, this institution has committed to innovative education, strong industry engagement and social inclusion.

Opportunity

The university is devoted to “flexible provision of education and training” which embraces an innovative delivery of its courses and how staff and students are able to collaborate. To support their vision, they embarked on a journey to modernise, expand, and secure their wireless infrastructure. They aimed to provide reliable and efficient Wi-Fi services within the university campuses and the newly built student accommodation, while simplifying and securing the Wi-Fi on-boarding process. They also seeked to increase the capacity and coverage for indoor and outdoor access across the university and extend the Wi-Fi to the streets surrounding the main campus. The client appointed Outcomex as their systems integrator to deliver the design and implementation of their new wireless network.

Solution

Outcomex worked with the university to install over 2000 Cisco Access Points across the campus. The new Cisco wireless solution allows to cater for high density in concert halls and lecture rooms, and enables Wi-Fi outdoor and in student accommodation. Cisco Connected Mobile Experience (CMX) was implemented; giving the education provider visibility on customers and assets location, and introducing a secure public Wi-Fi available outside the main campus and in the surrounding streets.

Outcomex was also mandated to re-configure the Cisco Identity Services Engine (ISE) already installed on the University’s wireless network, as its configuration could not meet their growing requirements anymore. The new configuration supports all the university’s applications, the mobile workforce, the student home devices, as well as IoT devices. It also provides a more secure guest wireless access through more effective security controls when authenticating the university accounts by utilising certificate based authentication.

Technology Used

  • Cisco Access Points
  • Cisco Connected Mobile Experience (CMX)
  • Cisco Identity Services Engine (ISE)

Impact

The installation of 2000 access points across the campus improved the Wi-Fi coverage and speed immensely, especially in high density spaces like concert halls and lecture rooms. The utilisation of CMX gives the client visibility on foot traffic around campus to further improve student experience. It also allowed them to capture where their assets, like expensive lab material, were located, lowering the risk of the items being misplaced or stolen.

Outcomex’s reconfiguration of the ISE solution delivered superior user and device visibility to support their mobility experiences and to manage access. The client gained the dynamic control required to make sure only the right people with trusted devices get the right level of access to network services, accelerating their capabilities to identify, mitigate, and remediate threats on their wireless network. The control around device detection and user authentication enabled them to deploy their Mobile Workforce initiative, allowing BYOD services for staff, while maintaining security and integrity of sensitive data. Finally, ISE provided the client with an easy way to enable three separate guest wireless services, each with different requirements: an event driven guests with hidden SSID controlled by event specific passcode, a sponsored hidden guest SSID with username and password created within Prime, and a guest with self-registration.

Through this project, Outcomex contributed to make the university wireless environment safe and reliable, leading to more innovative and higher quality education outcomes.