3 Barriers to Innovation: Are you a Sustainer or an Innovator?

Technology continues to become more complex as siloed projects create new layers and inter-dependencies within infrastructures. That’s not to say companies don’t want to simplify their landscape. It just comes down to how much time is allocated to addressing project sprawl. The fact is that the skills gap is becoming the new “silent killer” and only surfaces when issues cause business impact.

Barrier #1: Sustaining the Technology

Just as the business and technology environment changes, so do the skills and knowledge required to sustain it. It’s hard to manage change however, when most of your time is spent on just sustaining what’s already there. In fact, in most IT organizations 70-80% of resources are spent just keeping things working, while only 20-30% of IT efforts are spent on innovation and development.

To realize the full benefits and capabilities of today’s advanced infrastructures, it’s important to have expertise that can uncover value in under utilized areas or find hidden savings that can help drive operational excellence. [Read more…]

Free Guide: How to Build a Mobile Device Use Policy

Managing the risks of a mobile security tsunami – why a personal mobile device acceptable use policy for your organization matters.

Personal smartphones, laptops, tablets, e-readers, netbooks, gaming devices – it’s a whole new mobile wild west out there. At first, organizations and their IT teams, understandably fearful of the risks to the integrity of private information and business data, were resistant to giving employees’ personal devices access to the organization’s business network. But increasingly, they’re having a change of heart.

Why? For starters, with employees logging on to answer emails, review contracts and marketing materials or simply catching up on a mountain of work anytime of day or night, offering them the freedom to use the same devices at work, on the road and at home means increased accessibility and productivity with a device each of those employees is already familiar with.

Equally important, mobile device management has improved by leaps and bounds to the point where now a single interface can be used to manage devices whether they’re on a BlackBerry platform, Apple iOS or Google Android. That’s gone a long way to mitigating resistance from IT departments fearful of security tsunamis.

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When Your Desktops Go Virtual, Don’t Forget About Security

The right VDI security achieves the costs and efficiencies your enterprise is looking for.

As server virtualization continues to go mainstream, achieving significant savings by optimizing resource utilization, many organizations are taking the lessons learned and benefits achieved and setting their sights on an even bigger challenge and opportunity: the desktop.

Desktop virtualization – or VDI for short – combines the robust virtualization technology from server virtualization with advanced session management and innovative network protocols to provide a user experience very similar to working on a dedicated desktop PC. But, with server hardware shared by multiple desktops (all completely isolated from each other), overall resource utilization is much more efficient – and that’s just the tip of the iceberg.

[Read more…]

8 Critical Tips For A Successful Unified Collaboration Implementation

What business goals are you trying to achieve? Are you trying to improve service, cut costs, or drive revenue?

Migrating or implementing a new voice infrastructure isn’t easy. To be successful, you need to understand all the variables from hardware to software to how people will interact with the new system.

We’ve installed hundreds of telephony infrastructures for a wide range of customers right across North America and found that Unified Collaboration (UC) can provide great value. But, despite the value, there are some hurdles to jump over to ensure the best outcome of an implementation. Below, we’ve compiled a few of the common issues we’ve come across while helping customers that when not addressed, set back the implementation or result in increased costs later on. [Read more…]

How the right Services provider helps you get to the finish line, fast.

As summer comes to a close, it’s time to get back to business. Fall brings a fresh opportunity to focus on what needs to be done and to make action plans for the last quarter of the year. This is especially relevant within the fast-paced and frequently evolving IT industry. New technologies are constantly being introduced and adapted into various business environments, so advanced planning and support is crucial.

The Services business plays a pivotal role in guiding the adaptation of the changing technology landscape. The resources, knowledge and expertise Services offers helps organizations consider the most efficient ways to deploy and optimize technologies within unique environments. To discuss how the right Services provider has a profound impact on organizations, the Advisor sat down with Softchoice’s Senior Vice President of Services, Paul Khawaja.

What are some common IT challenges that organizations will face over the next few years?

One of the transformational developments right now in IT is of course cloud computing. Many of our clients have some type of a cloud-based solution, but they also have proprietary self-hosted solutions to run their business. I believe integration of these applications is going to be critical. For example, how do you make sure a sales management provider and your sales reports are effectively connecting into your ERP or into your manufacturing system? You’re likely going to need consultants to come in and work with your IT organization to develop a road map. And when they do, they need to be able to address questions like “How do I work with those solutions in order to integrate them”, and “what is a reasonable timeline for me to integrate those solutions”?

What should organizations consider before choosing a potential Services partner? [Read more…]

Professional Services in the New Desktop Era

As organizations adapt to an evolving desktop environment, Professional Services will play a key role in guiding this transformation. The arrival of next-generation technology is one thing, but navigating through hundreds of options and actually deploying them are the most crucial components of IT success. Our Softchoice Advisor recently team met with John Kauffman, our Director of Professional Services to discuss Professional Services’ role in delivering the new desktop era.

Advisor: John, can you define Professional Services for us? [Read more…]