Home » IT Services News » IT Services News No. 186 (Apr 2017) » Results of ITS User Survey 2017

Results of ITS User Survey 2017

About the survey

We conducted our ITS User Survey 2017 from 22 December 2016 to 1 February 2017.  All staff and students were invited to participate in this survey. Through this survey, we wish 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.

In this survey, respondents were asked to indicate the extent to which they agreed with the survey questions that described the ITS services on a scale of 5 to 1, namely Strongly Agree (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/Not Using (NA).  The mean score based on the five-point scale is calculated.

We are glad to have received a total of 618 completed responses, 263 are from staff (43%) and 355 are from students (57%).  The distribution is tabulated in Table 1.

Table 1: Respondents by User Groups

  Percentage No. of responses
Academic staff 6.6% 41
Non-academic staff 35.9% 222
Undergraduate students 39.2% 242
Postgraduate students 18.3% 113
Total: 100.0% 618

Most Important and Most Satisfied Services

We surveyed a total of 11 major service categories that ITS is supporting.  The most important and most satisfied services are tabulated in Table 2.

Table 2: Ranking of the Most Important and the Most Satisfied Services

Ranking Most Important Most Satisfied
1st Network services, email services Email
2nd HKU Portal
3rd HKU Portal Microsoft Office 365 ProPlus
4th eLearning services eLearning services
5th Microsoft Office 365 ProPlus Information security
6th Information security Network services, user support services
7th User support services
8th Server facilities Server facilities
9th Communications services Communications services
10th HKU Mobile App eNotices System
11th eNotices System HKU Mobile App

Comparison between 2015 and 2017 User Surveys

Comparing the survey results of 2015 and 2017, the mean scores on the “most important services” and “most satisfied services” attained under the commonly surveyed service categories are consistent with only slight difference.  The mean scores are summarized below by Chart 3 and Chart 4.  

The consistent pattern tells us that the services considered important remain important after 2 years and they can continually satisfy the needs of our users.  New service categories are added in the survey of 2017 to collect users’ feedback on a wider spectrum of services supported by ITS. 

Chart 3: Mean Score on the "Most Important Services" Attained in 2015 and 2017 Surveys

Mean Score on the "Most Important Services" Attained in 2015 and 2017 Surveys


Chart 4: Mean Score on the "Most Satisfied Services" Attained in 2015 and 2017 Surveys

Mean Score on the "Most Satisfied Services" Attained in 2015 and 2017 Surveys

Findings on Respective Services

A summary of the survey findings is shown in Table 5.  The percentage figures in the “Findings” column are shown by the groups of “Overall”, “Staff” and “Students”.  “Strongly Agree” (5) and “Agree” (4) are grouped under “Agree” and “Disagree” (2) and “Strongly Disagree” (1) are grouped under “Disagree”.  Responses indicating “Not Applicable/Not Using (NA)” are excluded from the calculations.   

Table 5: Highlight of Findings in ITS User Survey 2017

1.O=Overall, SF= Staff, ST= Students
2.Services highlighted in orange are services with 20% or more respondents on the overall indicating disagreement/problems countered and are areas expecting improvement.

  Services Mean Satis-faction Score Survey question Findings Total no. of responses
(Strongly Agree & Agree)
Neutral Disagree
(Strongly Disagree & Disagree)
1 eLearning services (Moodle and lecture capture) 4.01 The University's Learning Management System (Moodle) can support my needs and facilitate my work/study. 82% 61% 90% 14% 34% 7% 4% 5% 3% 481
      The University's Lecture Capture System (Panopto) can support my needs and facilitate my work/study. 58% 41% 66% 34% 51% 26% 8% 8% 8% 349
      The online materials and training offered on the use of Moodle are sufficient and can meet my expectation. 73% 42% 84% 23% 51% 13% 4% 7% 3% 467
      The online materials and training offered on the use of Panopto are sufficient and can meet my expectation. 58% 41% 66% 36% 53% 29% 6% 6% 5% 354
2 Network services (office and hall network, WiFi and HKUVPN) 3.80 I am satisfied with the WiFi connectivity, both speed and coverage, on campus. 63% 60% 65% 14% 14% 14% 23% 26% 21% 604
      I am satisfied with the network connectivity, both speed and coverage, in my office. 68% 68% N/A 14% 14% N/A 18% 18% N/A 257
      I am satisfied with the WiFi connectivity, both speed and coverage, in halls of student residence. 61% N/A 61% 20% N/A 20% 19% N/A 19% 205
      I am satisfied with the HKUVPN (Virtual Private Network) service in supporting my work/study when I am off campus. 57% 50% 63% 27% 35% 20% 16% 15% 17% 498
3 Email 4.16 The HKU email service can meet my needs of communications at work/study. 86% 81% 90% 10% 15% 6% 4% 4% 4% 607
      I am using the functions powered by Google such as Google Doc/Google Drive regularly and an HKU-affiliated Gmail account can facilitate my teaching tasks and collaborations. 49% 49% N/A 42% 42% N/A 9% 9% N/A 151
      I am handling work-related sensitive and personal information over email regularly. I understand the need to do extra steps to protect them from falling into the wrong hands. 76% 76% N/A 21% 21% N/A 3% 3% N/A 223
4 Microsoft Office 365 ProPlus 4.02 I find the Microsoft Office 365 ProPlus service easy to download and use. 69% 47% 80% 24% 44% 14% 7% 9% 6% 447
5 HKU Portal 4.06 I find no technical problems in using HKU Portal services e.g. SIS, HCMS (for staff), MyEmail, Moodle, and departmental services in the past 12 months. 59% 52% 64% 22% 28% 18% 19% 20% 18% 608
      I can find most of the information/services that I need to support my work/study under HKU Portal. 75% 64% 83% 18% 26% 12% 7% 10% 5% 607
      I find no problems in locating the information under HKU Portal and can use its "Search" function to look up the required information. 60% 48% 69% 27% 35% 20% 13% 17% 11% 591
6 HKU Mobile App 3.26 I use HKU App frequently to locate HKU-related information. 24% 12% 30% 31% 43% 25% 45% 45% 45% 365
      HKU App has included the commonly used information I wish to find. 33% 21% 40% 41% 55% 33% 26% 24% 27% 334
      I would rather look up information from HKU App than HKU web. 22% 15% 27% 25% 30% 21% 53% 55% 52% 379
7 Information security 3.82 I have tried to reset my HKU Portal PIN through a one-time password sent to my registered alternate email or via SMS, and find it easy to do. 69% 64% 72% 21% 25% 18% 10% 11% 10% 432
      I encountered problem(s) related to information security e.g. use of 2FA (2-factor authentication), virus attack, IP address blocking in the past 12 months. 38% 34% 40% 30% 40% 23% 32% 26% 37% 426
      The security measures being implemented by ITS e.g. 2FA, abuse case handling and firewall protection are adequate. 52% 42% 59% 41% 51% 34% 7% 7% 7% 468
      The use of 2FA is easy and I can use it to access HKUVPN and HKU Portal (for staff only) without problems. 49% 43% 53% 33% 38% 29% 18% 19% 18% 433
8 Server facilities (HPC/HTC, ITS Cloud and departmental web server, etc.) 3.71 The High Performance Computing (HPC)/High Throughput Computing (HTC) facilities supported by ITS can meet the computing needs of my research projects. 55% 35% 64% 36% 54% 28% 9% 11% 8% 279
      I am able to obtain helpful guidance and support/training on the use of HPC/HTC facilities supported by ITS. 53% 34% 63% 38% 55% 30% 9% 11% 7% 284
      ITS Cloud service can meet the needs of my department if we have to add more computer resources. 43% 43% N/A 42% 42% N/A 15% 15% N/A 118
      My department will use ITS Cloud service in lieu of purchasing new physical servers. 34% 34% N/A 51% 51% N/A 15% 15% N/A 111
9 User support services 3.80 I am able to get support from ITS Service Desk whenever I encounter problems in using the central IT services. 73% 75% 71% 23% 20% 25% 4% 5% 4% 468
      ITS Service Desk can answer my enquiries in a professional manner (in terms of courtesy, timeliness, knowledge, etc.). 72% 73% 72% 24% 23% 24% 4% 4% 4% 465
      The online materials e.g. ITS website, user guides and FAQs are sufficient and I can find the information I want. 58% 45% 69% 33% 43% 25% 9% 12% 6% 503
      The training delivered by ITS can support my work/study at the University and is of satisfactory quality. 52% 45% 59% 37% 43% 32% 11% 12% 9% 404
10 eNotices System 3.51 HKU eNotices can meet the needs in supporting departments in disseminating information. 54% 47% 59% 33% 39% 29% 13% 14% 12% 563
      I am reading the daily digest of HKU Daily Notices containing eNotices posted by departments regularly. 44% 47% 42% 30% 33% 28% 26% 20% 30% 561
11 Communications services (phone, video conferencing, multimedia streaming, etc.) 3.60 I am familiar with the use of the office phone features (forwarding, voice mail, etc.) 52% 52% N/A 31% 31% N/A 17% 17% N/A 210
      The video-conferencing facilities supported by ITS are adequate to meet the operational needs of my department and I can get help whenever I encounter problems in using these facilities. 30% 30% N/A 56% 56% N/A 14% 14% N/A 118

Areas Identified for Improvements and Actions for Improvements

Some users gave valuable comments in the survey.  Those that have been mentioned for a few times are summarized below -

Network services - The WiFi connections in the Main Library and some other buildings are not stable.  ITS is studying the identified areas and will work with the related parties for improvements. The equipment for Wi-Fi.HK will be upgraded soon and performance improvement is expected.

eLearning services - In eLearning, the Turnitin anti-plagiarism system sometimes does not respond in time.  Turnitin is an Internet cloud-based system subscribed by the University.  The service level of the Turnitin system relies on the external service provider which serves many organizations in the world, and the service provider is being urged to improve on its system response. 

ITS is working on adding Google accounts for teachers so that the Google Docs features, e.g. Google Drive, can be used among teachers and students. 

More video tutorial materials will be provided in the HKU ITS YouTube Channel (https://www.youtube.com/HKUITServices-HKUITS).

Email - Some users reported they are not familiar with the use of the staff email system (Microsoft Exchange/Outlook/web-based OWA) after migration from the old email system.  More training will be arranged.  Some students reported that they don’t like the email threading of HKU Connect email (powered by Google).  They can turn off the threading option under Settings > General tab > Conversion view Off. 

HKU Portal - For HKU Portal, it is a proprietary product for which not much can be changed about the user interface.  ITS has implemented the Search function and users are encouraged to make use of it to find the desirable links.

Information security - While the use of two factor authentication (2FA) could be considered by some users as inconvenient, it is a security measure that we need to protect against breaches of user accounts and intrusions of the IT services.  Compromised accounts can cause spamming, loss of privacy information, etc.  As a continual service improvement, we will enhance the user guides to make them easier to follow.

Server facilities - Some departments have reported that they need to share files among their staff.  They can apply for departmental workspace powered by Microsoft SharePoint (details at http://www.its.hku.hk/itsform/forms/CF-158i.pdf) or File Sharing System (a Network Attached Storage, details at http://itscloud.hku.hk/local/NAS-NFS.pdf).  Departments can also consider subscribing a virtual machine under the ITS Cloud.  Its management tool will be upgraded in Q3-Q4 2017 and users will find it more user-friendly by then.

eNotices System - Many users mentioned that they receive too many bulk emails which are considered irrelevant to the recipients.  Departments are recommended to use eNotices System instead of using bulk emails to disseminate event notices.  Users can also set up filters in the email tools to filter emails by sender, subjects, etc. to another folder instead of in-box (see http://www.its.hku.hk/faq/communication/bulkmail/email-rule for the steps and http://www.its.hku.hk/documentation/guide/communication/bulkmail/recipient on how to unsubscribe bulk emails from departments).

HKU Mobile App - A new design of the HKU App landing page is being implemented and users can expect a fresh look by summer 2017.


We are glad to receive the constructive comments from our staff and students. They are valuable for us to review our service levels and work towards possible areas for improvements.  We shall continue updating staff and students on such developments.

Last but not the least, we thank all respondents for their time and effort in giving us their valuable inputs.  We look forward to continuously receiving feedback from our staff and students.  Please feel free to contact our Service Desk at ithelp@hku.hk or 3917 0123 in case you need assistance or want us to know your feedback in using the central IT services.


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