With the help of BT, KCOM Group completed a group-wide deployment of desktops and laptops, with supporting changes to operating systems and production software to 1,700 users across multiple locations in the UK.
The Group’s desktop software and hardware was reaching end of life and needed updating. Paul Marsden, head of IT operations and his team were asked to lead the 12 month refresh project. Having worked for the organisation for eight years, Paul was well aware of the requirements across the business and has extensive experience in the delivery of IT services to end users.
The project team undertook a formal tender process. Selection was based on pricing, quality of response, reputation and product roadmap; and following a site visit to check capabilities, KCOM Group awarded the contract to BT.
The Group’s workforce is predominantly mobile with around 70% of them using laptops. BT engineers scheduled individual visits with all employees to upgrade their equipment. Using pre-configured hardware and with application software preloaded, data was transferred onto the new equipment and people were shown the updated software. This personalised approach minimised disruption and downtime and was appreciated by the busy workforce.
"At an early stage of the project, we were able to see BT people were there for us with the right help and information when needed. They were helpful and knowledgeable."
Paul Marsden, Head of IT Operations, KCOM Group
Paul said “At an early stage of the project, we were able to see BT people were there for us with the right help and information when needed. They were helpful and knowledgeable. Impact on our users was kept to a minimum, with the average time for a PC upgrade lasting one hour. The newly installed hardware and software is extremely reliable.”
The Group replaced its end-of-life computers with Lenovo desktop PCs and laptops. At the same time, they moved from Microsoft’s XP to Microsoft Windows 7, consolidated in-house corporate applications and deployed Microsoft Office 2010.
Paul adds: “Previous experience of working with BT proved invaluable – earlier they had helped deliver Microsoft System Centre Configuration Manager technology. They always provided great customer service and helped fix deployment issues quickly.”
The 12-month refresh project was completed on time and on budget, and with high levels of customer satisfaction.
Productivity has increased and positive feedback has been received from the workforce. KCOM Group has an excellent end user computing experience and employees are extremely pleased with the performance improvements and functional capabilities.
Paul advises CIOs and IT teams to use a hardware refresh as an opportunity to rationalise software. “Preparation and clarity about the tools you need is crucial,” he says. “It’s about finding a balance between reducing the amount of applications and providing the software needed to keep the business running effectively.”
Paul concludes: “The initiative has been a success, when the project encountered hurdles BT overcame them; they listened and sorted issues quickly. The project would not have been possible without their support.”
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