The Desktop and the Mobile Device: A Case of Either Or?

Before its release last week, Windows 8 was already blazing a polarising line between diehard desktop-lovers and members of the mobile device movement. The first camp proclaimed there’d always be room for the desktop and that the mobile device will never allow for the level or productivity and task completion a standard PC does.Windows 8, the latter camp proudly cheered, will send the classic desktop to its deathbed as more employees give first priority to their personal mobile device.

As organisations consider how far to dip their toes into mobility, it’s important to remind them that at this point, both desktop and mobile computing are still theirs for the taking. There is no computing ultimatum right now, and there might not ever be. What makes more sense than choosing which side of the dividing line to stand on is determining how both computing styles can fit the many and varied needs of your organisation.

The mobile device fills the gap

Think of mobility as a way to ensure productivity continues even when your employees are away from their desks. A report from PricewaterhouseCoopers entitled “The re‑emergence of enterprise mobility” describes the mobile device as an “intelligent network node.” Specifically, the mobile device offers more modes of contact than desktops: email, phone, text, video, chat and social media. This increases the chance you will be able to reach employees in some capacity while they’re on the road.     

Sharing content between the desktop and the mobile device

There are tools and applications that enable you to share content across devices, making it easier to integrate mobility into your desktop strategy. For instance, organisations can share their SharePoint portals on tablets and mobile phones with mobile web apps and customised mobile solutions. Employees can then access the same documents and calendarsthey use on their desktops. SharePoint 2013 will offer even more options in the form of new mobile browser experiences.

The desktop and the mobile device: What works for your industry?

CIO Australia article from earlier this year suggests that certain industries may be more primed for mobility than others. These are usually organisations with highly mobile employees, remote employees and employees needing to share data frequently throughout the day. Supply chain processes, disaster recovery and business continuity capability and social networking are also good areas for mobile optimising.

Before you start letting a flurry of personal devices into your organisation, consult with an IT provider that can help your business plot its desktop-mobility strategy. Datacom experts can share insight on every aspect of your deployment, from hardware procurement for both the desktop and the mobile device through to licensing and security.

Datacom Transforms Wilmar Australia’s IT Environment with a Move to the Cloud

Talk about a short deadline.

In 2010, sugar, ethanol and energy producer Wilmar Australia needed to transform its entire IT environment and rebrand its technology image as part of its divestment from parent company CSR. The catch: the project needed to be done in under a year for 1,500 employees in 31 locations to meet the divestment schedule.

The project involved leveraging the latest Microsoft technology for a desktop upgradewhile outsourcing core IT functions and moving Wilmar Australia’s IT infrastructure to Infrastructure as a Service. Wilmar Australia also wanted a brand makeover; it saw itself as developing into a more engaging, dynamic organisation and wanted its technology to reflect that.

A sweet solution

A lot of IT solutions providers might’ve balked at that lofty task. Not Datacom.

 Wilmar Australia’s new vision aligned very closely with Datacom’s approach to doing business – delivering enduring performance through fresh thinking. These shared values, along with Datacom’s technology knowledge and commitment to building strong partnerships with its customers, made choosing an IT solutions provider easier for Wilmar Australia.

The eventual solution for Wilmar Australia’s IT needs was a Microsoft stack running on Datacom’s IaaS cloud. The list of tasks involved to complete the project included:

  • Migrating from Windows XP to Windows 7
  • Migrating from Office 2003 to Office 2010
  • Adding messaging with Exchange 2010
  • Establishing a new Active Directory 2008
  • Updating legacy unified communications systems using Cisco and Microsoft Lync 2010
  • Incorporating document management with SharePoint 2010
  • Establishing database management and consolidation using SQL 2010
  • Integrating with BizTalk
  • Establishing security via Threat Management Gateway
  • Creating full disaster recovery

Datacom also helped move 240 of Wilmar Australia’s servers and over 90 of their critical business applications to the cloud.

Better technology, better business

Wilmar Australia’s employees across locations are now able to leverage the latest technology to collaborate and communicate better. With the latest operating system and office and communications tools, each employee is able to complete his or her tasks and assignments with renewed efficiency and simplicity.

Brendan O’Kane, General Manager of Information Services at Wilmar Australia, says the Datacom migration has set the organisation on a course toward greater agility and innovation.

“We have given people new tools and better access to help them do their jobs more efficiently and take a lot of noise out of the business,” he says. “The IT strategy is now supporting the business.

“The solution is a much better fit to our DNA than where we came from. We needed to be able to support change and innovation in a fast-moving environment, and the Datacom cloud allows us to do that.”