Digital transformation at London Met

London Met's Director of Digital Transformation, Will Hopson-Hill, reflects on everything that's been acheived so far.

Date: 29 April 2024

On 7 December 2022, London Metropolitan University publicly launched its Digital First Strategy, which came into being in 2021 following a year-long planning and consultation process with students and staff. This ambitious plan is not just about technology; it's about reshaping the way London Met interacts, teaches, and learns. 

We sat down with our Director of Digital Transformation, Will Hopson Hill, to look back at the progress made so far and look ahead to what we can expect in 2024. 

It's been nearly a year and a half since the Digital First Strategy was announced. How does it feel to see the vision becoming a reality? 

It’s incredibly rewarding. Although the strategy was announced last December, its roots go back to summer of 2021. Witnessing the transformation across London Met since then has been a testament to our commitment to digital maturity. We've made significant progress, but our journey towards fully realising our digital ambitions continues. 

How will the Digital First Strategy benefit students in creating a personalised, flexible learning environment? 

The Digital First Strategy is fundamentally about empowering students to build a personalised, flexible, and accessible digital learning environment. It enables students to learn at their convenience, from any location. We’re fostering a culture where students are confident and competent in navigating and thriving in an agile, digital environment. By integrating digital approaches in our teaching and learning, we’re making it clear where digital can add value to their educational experience. It’s about providing them with the tools and skills to excel in a digital world, preparing them not just for their time at London Met, but for the future too. 

Could you share an instance that demonstrates the positive impact of digital transformation on our students or faculty? 

The digitisation of our attendance monitoring process stands out. This was a direct response to faculty concerns about administrative burdens. By streamlining this process, we’ve allowed our faculty to refocus on teaching and student engagement, which is at the heart of what we do.

Are there any student success stories that highlight the benefits of our digital initiatives? 

Students have responded very positively to the enhanced digital technology in our teaching spaces. Tools like Panopto and Microsoft Teams have provided a consistent, high-quality learning experience, whether students are on campus or learning remotely. This flexibility is a key part of our commitment to delivering a top-tier education in a digital era. 

How has the digital transformation journey influenced our faculty and staff in their professional experiences? 

Moving to Microsoft 365 has been transformative. It’s more than a technological upgrade; it aligns with our People Strategy, focusing on investing in our staff's professional development. The benefits of this integrated, cloud-based environment are immense, fostering collaboration and continuous learning. 

What impact has the diversity of the team had on the success of these digital projects?  

Diversity in our teams has been crucial. Including voices from different departments and student representatives ensures our digital initiatives meet a wide range of needs, leading to more effective, user-centric solutions. This inclusivity has been vital in our unified approach to digital transformation. 

What are your highlights in leading this strategy? 

Seeing the university community rally behind the Digital First Strategy has been hugely rewarding. Completing initiatives as varied as the School of Nursing and the new attendance monitoring system highlight what can be achieved with shared goals and collaboration. 

Looking forward, what excites you most about the next phase of digital transformation at London Met? 

The launch of MyView, our new one-stop platform for People & Finance, and enhancing digital skills across the university are particularly exciting. These steps align with our new Student Success and People strategies, aiming to foster positive change and make working and studying at London Met more rewarding, with digital innovation at the core.