The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign offers several options for online learning, with Blackboard Learn (branded as Illinois Compass) serving at the core of our LMS offerings. For years we ran as a self-hosted installation. However, with a new CIO that positioned our institution for "cloud first" and "buy over build", the time was right to move to Blackboard Managed-Hosting.
Because of the State of Illinois requirements for procurement and contracting, we had to work closely with Blackboard to work within a tightly compressed timeline for migration, and meet Blackboard requirements in a much shorter time than normal. We also encountered some unforeseen challenges and benefits following this migration.
We present our journey to those that may be on the fence about moving to a hosted service, with the eventual goal of cloud/SaaS learning delivery.