Digital Ready Check We Make Schools and Universities Ready for the Digital Future

Digital transformation is in full swing. It is changing how we get information, how we communicate, how we consume and how we work – in short: how we live. This development will shape the everyday world of future generations, in both occupational and private spheres. As a result, appropriate digital skills must be taught to the next generations at an early stage. We will only succeed in doing this if we can take advantage of the opportunities provided by digital processes.

However, many educational institutions, such as schools and universities, are only at the beginning of the path towards digital transformation. The corona crisis in particular has made existing structural and methodological deficiencies abundantly clear, as well as hasty decision-making.

Skills Instead of Knowledge

In the past, added value was created through factual knowledge, now information often spreads just as quickly as it becomes outdated. New technologies make information available at any time and anywhere. As a result, less factual knowledge will be required in future. Instead, skills will be in demand, with keywords such as future skills, digital literacy and digital competence. So added value is now created when education provides skills that the computer does not have, and uses the efficiency potential of modern technologies. It is necessary to develop concepts that enable educational and non-educational staff to respond to and promote the development of adolescents, by means of media communication appropriate to their age and media support in line with their learning type.

As an appropriate response to the fourth industrial revolution, the digital transformation in education, teaching and research (#Education 4.0) must be equally revolutionary.

These New Requirements Present Many Educational Institutions with a Number of Challenges:

  • How can digital features usefully improve my processes in education, teaching and administration?
  • How do I formulate and draw up my media instructive proposals and media development plans?
  • Where and how do I start with all the stakeholders (teachers, parents and school students) of my educational institution with regard to digital processes and the changes it brings?
  • How do I promote the acceptance of media and technology by all the stakeholders (teachers, parents and school students) in my educational institution?
  • When and how can digital media be integrated into teaching in an academically meaningful way?
  • What does my existing IT infrastructure look like? How powerful, future-proofed and secure is it?
  • Which hardware and software components for media technology should I use to equip my rooms?
  • Who will train my teachers in the new platforms, media and equipment?
  • Is my expenditure on digital processes eligible for funding? What funding programs are there, and how do I apply for and use funding in compliance with audit requirements?
  • How do I procure the required planning, construction and technical services?
  • What operator models are there for my digital infrastructure and what does sustainable and economic service and operation look like?
  • Which digital media provides the best support for our academic and educational challenges?
  • What possibilities do current and pioneering software and hardware solutions offer me in the implementation of our media curriculum?
  • Who will support me in bridging the gap between our integral media curriculum, the structural and technical requirements, and the training of our school community?

Issues such as these are complex and diverse. The bureaucratic effort is high, especially in the breadth of the topics to be considered and the required depth of agreement and coordination among the relevant parties, involving the university/school, educational institution, owner and operator.

Together Towards Digital Readiness

Drees & Sommer supports the digital transformation process in individual modules or in its entirety, as required. It covers the whole range, from establishing the status to developing a digital strategy and proposal, through fully completed implementation, including funding management, user training and further training, and operational planning. For this purpose, we have a long-standing strategic partnership with ComConsult GmbH in the IT field; with macom GmbH in the field of media technology planning; and with SIT UG in cooperation with RWTH Aachen University in the pedagogical, didactic and sociological fields. This provides you with an innovative range of services that is unique both in the breadth of the 360° view and in the possible depth of consulting. Users are integrated in different programs, tailored to their individual needs, through to involvement of the school students.

Five Steps to Success

By establishing the status, the Digital Ready Check forms the basis of your digital strategy. It is supplemented by four other modules. These build on each other, but are also suitable for selectively supporting existing approaches. As a requirement for procuring infrastructure eligible for funding, the Digital Ready Check itself is usually also eligible for funding.

Step 1 - Establishing the Status through a Digital Ready Check

  • Inventory of your buildings to review all aspects relevant to IT and media technology, based on a comprehensive set of criteria
  • Checking to ensure nothing has been omitted, and determining your position - where do we currently stand in terms of media set-up? How are our pedagogical and didactic proposals interlinked with media support?
  • Analysis and evaluation of existing media development plans, digital transformation proposals and operational plans
  • Determining the digital readiness of your buildings in the form of a target-actual comparison
  • Assessing the current status and experience of digital media in teaching
  • Summarized explanatory report with recommendations for action

Step 2 - Requirements Management for Digital Processes

  • Conducting creative workshops and future-oriented workshops with the school authority, school supervision, school management, the educational and non-educational staff, as well as school students
  • Formulating the resulting requirements for buildings and technical equipment
  • Developing user-specific media requirements – in relation to teaching, administration and buildings
  • Developing an integral media curriculum

Step 3 - Proposal

  • Developing a digital strategy and media development plan
  • Defining of the infrastructure and technology to be procured
  • Determining the required framework of costs and scheduling
  • Assessing the eligibility of the proposed measures for receiving funding, management of funding applications

Step 4 - Planning and Implementation

  • Planning the digital classrooms and the required IT infrastructure
  • Tender procedures, award of contracts, coordinating the procurement of the goods, construction work and services required, as well as supervision of the work to ensure that it is on schedule and free of defects
  • Documentation of the use of funding and preparation of the final statement proving use of the funding

Step 5 - Training and Operation

  • Support for formulation of operating models, maintenance services and service contracts
  • Review and optimization of existing service contracts
  • Training your teaching and technical staff as well as providing contact persons and support during use
  • Determining the condition of existing technology with regard to lifespan and freedom from defects
  • Training your teachers for didactically worthwhile implementation of digital media in the classroom

App-Aided Data Collection

The building data for the Digital Ready Check is recorded digitally, using an app provided by Drees & Sommer. Especially when reviewing a real estate portfolio, this allows time-saving and efficient collection of building data and minimizes any additional workload for your building and property management.


College Darmstadt, @macom
Experimenta: Science Center Heilbronn. © Sauerbruch Hutton, Berlin
Nestlé Competence Center, @macom
Liebherr Service Center, @macom
Primary School Lütjenmoor und Grootmoor Gymnasium

About Drees & Sommer

As the leading European Consulting, Planning and Project Management enterprise, Drees & Sommer has worked with private and public clients from construction bodies to investors on all types of real estate and infrastructure projects – both analog and digital – for 50 years. With its pioneering and future-shaping consulting, the company offers solutions for successful buildings, high-return portfolios, powerful infrastructure and livable cities. Around 4,000 employees in interdisciplinary teams based at 46 locations worldwide support clients across a wide spectrum of sectors. All the services provided by the partner-run company take into consideration both economic and ecological concerns. Drees & Sommer calls this holistic approach ‘the blue way’.

About macom

macomGROUP is Europe’s leading expert in specialist media technology planning and audio video (AV) technology and information technology (IT) consulting. Our team of more than 80 engineers advises schools and education providers as well as leading medium sized and DAX-listed companies on the planning and implementation of AV and IT projects.

We have been involved in planning audiovisual solutions for digital learning environments, new working environments as well as interactive brand spaces and customer experiences since 1995. In our macomLAB we also develop and test concepts for learning platforms and workstations of the future as well as digital reality for professional use. Our headquarters in Stuttgart and branch offices in the German cities of Berlin, Eislingen/Fils, Frankfurt am Main, Hamburg, Cologne, Munich, and London (UK) and Barcelona (Spain) enable us to serve our clients worldwide.


About ComConsult

ComConsult is one of the largest and most successful consulting companies in the IT industry, which provides completely manufacturer-independent and product-neutral advice. We support our customers across all life cycles of IT. Whether process optimization, planning of data centers or the development of communication and security concepts, our consulting invariably takes into account all foreseeable new technologies.


About SIT UG

SIT UG with the business areas BIT (Bioeconomy Innovation Thinking) and PIT (Personal Innovation Thinking) is your management consultancy with scientific expertise for your success in practice! Our expertise counts

  • the design of sophisticated socio-technical innovations;
  • the analysis and optimization of organizational processes and structures;
  • the construction and visualization of productive innovation networks;
  • the successful and sustainable implementation of the bioeconomy; as well
  • the individual development of personalities and entire teams


About RWTH Aachen

In our teaching activities we deal with didactic models and different methods of facilitating knowledge. This focuses on school lessons. We place particular emphasis on the possibilities resulting from the use of digital media.

The teaching area conducts both application-oriented and fundamental theoretical research in the field of technology education and media education. The key issues here are the ways of working with media in formal and informal education processes. The current focus of the teaching area's research interests is mainly on:

  • learning through shaping: concepts for media education and media use in schools;
  • media habits of instructors and school students;
  • learning strategies with digital media;
  • use of digital media to facilitate knowledge;
  • use of tablet PCs in school lessons;
  • digital literacy and media skills.

Your contact

Klaus Dederichs, Head of ICT, +49 241 189959-7411, klaus.dederichs@dreso.com

Kerstin Pfullmann, Education, +49 40 514944-6331, kerstin.pfullmann@dreso.com

Christian Zenker, Education, +49 221 13050-5236, christian.zenker@dreso.com

Dr. Verena Hilgenstock, User Experience, +49 40 514944-6345, verena.hilgenstock@rbsgroup.eu

Dipl.-Ing. (FH) Siegfried Hermann, Managing Director, +49 711 25005-92, hermann@macom.de

macom GmbH Consulting. Engineering. Management. | Lenzhalde 28 | 70192 Stuttgart

Thomas Steil, +49 151 58046894, steil@comconsult.com

ComConsult GmbH | Pascalstraße 27 | 52076 Aachen | Germany

Dr. Ilona Andrea Cwielong, +49 241 80 93568, ilona.cwielong@rwth-aachen.de

RWTH Aachen | Institut für Erziehungswissenschaften | Eilfschornsteinstr. 7 | 52056 Aachen

Dr. phil. Jacqueline Lemm, +49 241 80 95975, jlemm@soziologie.rwth-aachen.de

RWTH Aachen | Lehrstuhl für Technik- und Organisationssoziologie | Eilfschornsteinstr. 7 | 52056 Aachen

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