Home » IT Services News » IT Services News No. 174 (Apr 2015) » Results of ITS User Survey 2015

Results of ITS User Survey 2015

We conducted our bi-annual ITS User Survey during the period 14 January 2015 to 8 February 2015.  All University staff and students were invited to participate in this survey. Through this survey, we hope to be able to (a) collect user experience and feedback on our major services; (b) gain a better understanding of our users’ needs in IT and related services; and (c) identify possible areas for improvement.


We are glad to have received a total of 643 responses, 276 are from staff (43%) and 367 are from students (57%).  The distribution is tabulated below-

Table 1: Respondents by User Groups

 User Group Count Percent
Academic staff 62 9.6%
Non-academic staff 214 33.3%
Undergraduate student 228 35.5%
Postgraduate student 139 21.6%
Total 643 100.0%

The Survey

We had almost a completely new set of questions in this Survey. Questions were set to ask respondents about major services of ITS other than eLearning Support and Learning Environment Services, which had been covered in separate user surveys.

Respondents were asked to indicate the extent to which they agreed with the survey questions that described the major IT services on a five-point scale, namely Strongly Agreed (5), Agree (4), Neutral (3), Disagree (2) and Strongly Disagree (1).  For questions that were not applicable to them, they could simply choose Not Applicable.  The mean score based on the five-point scale is calculated for each service as the service’s satisfaction index.


Most Important and Most Satisfied Services

The three most important services named by the respondents are email, network services and HKU Portal and applications; and the three most satisfied services are email, information security and HKU Portal applications.   The feedback in these two areas is quite consistent with that of 2013, as summarized in the following table -

  Survey 2015 Survey 2013
Rank Most Important Mean Score Most Satisfied Mean Score Most Important Mean Score Most Satisfied Mean Score
1st Email services 4.53 Email services 4.01 Email services 4.67 Information security 4.15
2nd Network services (on and off campus) 4.50 Information security 3.94 Network services (on and off campus) 4.56 Email services 3.98
3rd HKU Portal and applications 4.48 HKU Portal and applications 3.84 HKU Portal   4.54 Server computers (HPCPOWER, web server cloud, etc.) 3.55


A summary of the survey findings can be found in the following table.  The percentage figures in the “Findings” column include responses under the categories - “Strongly Agree” (5), “Agree” (4), “Disagree” (2) and “Strongly Disagree” (1) - only.  In other words, responses under “Neutral” (3) are excluded in calculating the percentages.      

  Services Satisfaction Index Findings Actions for Improvement
1 Information security 3.94 -   75% agreed the security measures implemented was adequate.  
      -   Above 60% agreed that secret questions and two-factor authentication are good ways for enhancing information security. We will promote using “secret questions” for resetting account passwords.  Study is underway on using two-factor authentication for accessing sensitive information.
2 Email services 4.01 -   84% agreed that the email service met their needs for work/study.  
      -   40% of the staff respondents supported using cloud-based email and 24% shared the opposite views. The valuable inputs will be taken into consideration if the cloud-based email service is extended for use by staff.
      -   70% agreed that the HKU bulk mail service could meet the needs in supporting departments in disseminating information.  However, less than 50% considered the volume of daily HKU bulk emails was acceptable and 29% considered the existing volume unacceptable. A project on enhancing dissemination of electronic notices is underway, which will help to reduce the volume of bulk emails to staff/students.
3 Network services 3.63 - 58% of the respondents were satisfied with the WiFi connectivity on campus and 23% said the otherwise. - In student residential halls, only 40% students were satisfied and 32% said otherwise.   We will look into the possible ways to enhance the WiFi connectivity on campus. With the proliferation of mobile devices among the student community, the WiFi access points set up in student halls in the last decade become inadequate.  We have been receiving student reports on weak WiFi connectivity in the halls from time to time.  ITS will keep on seeking funding support from the University in upgrading the WiFi infrastructure in the student halls.
      - 56% of the respondents were satisfied with the HKU Virtual Private Network service but 16% had contrary views. We will look into the deficiency areas for possible improvement.
4 HKU Portal and applications 3.84  
4a HKU Portal   -  77% of the respondents found it easy to access the HKU Portal service and 73% could find most of the functions for their work/study in the Portal.  
      - Only 52% of the respondents know how to use the “Search” function in the HKU Portal and 27% indicated they don’t know how to use. We will promote the use of the “Search” function via different channels.
4b HKU Event Management System   -  56% respondents thought HKUEMS could let them view and register University events easily and 49% thought it could support management of events and training courses.  
4c HKU App   -  37% considered the HKU App platform was useful and easy to use and 37% thought it had included the common applications they would wish to use.  Over 20% thought otherwise. We will continue to develop and enhance HKU App.
5 Server facilities 3.64  
5a HPC   - 46% indicated the High Performance Computing (HPC)/High Throughput Computing (HTC) facilities could meet the computing needs of their research projects and they could get helpful guidance and support/training from ITS in these areas.  
5b ITS web server cloud, ITS Cloud   -  59% agreed that ITS web server was important in website hosting and 50% agreed that the ITS Cloud service could meet their need for additional computer resources when required.  44% agreed that they would use ITS Cloud instead of purchase new physical servers in future. We will promote the ITS Cloud service proactively, and enrich the service to make it even more attractive to departments.
6 Communication Services 3.66 -  63% were satisfied with the reliability and performance of the University’s phone system.   
      -  38% indicated they were familiar with the phone features and 33% said otherwise. More training on IP phone features will be organized for users.
      -  35% respondents said they couldn’t locate and use the video-conferencing facilities and equipment when they had a need; and 27% indicated otherwise. More promotional activities will be arranged, in particular for departmental IT coordinators, to inform departments the video-conferencing facilities and support available from ITS.
7 User support services 3.77  
7a Service Desk   -  70% agreed that they were able to get support from ITS Service Desk when they encountered problems in using the central IT services; and 68% said their enquiries had been handled in a professional manner.  
7b Training   -  56% agreed that ITS training courses were useful in supporting their work/study, and they were satisfied with the quality.  
7c Information availability   -  65% could find the IT related information they need from ITS website and 69% were aware of the information/notices published by ITS through different channels.  


We are pleased to receive positive feedback in most of the service areas surveyed, particularly in information security, email, HKU Portal and applications, server facilities and user support services.  On the other hand, some improvement areas, such as in HKU bulk mail, WiFi connectivity in student halls and video-conferencing facilities/support, have been identified.   

Based on the feedback, we are planning a course of actions to address the deficiencies. 

We thank all respondents for their valuable inputs given to us in this Survey.


Idy Tang
User Services Team
Tel: 3917 6220
Email: tangky@hku.hk