Tag Archive | Contemporary Workplace

Windows 8 is on its way

This week we have been participating in Microsoft’s Worldwide Partner Conference, and this year was a record-breaking event with over 16,000 partners attending from over 156 different countries (4,000 were attending for the first time). When you witness the vast number of attendees and the diversity of partners you realise that it is one of the largest, most vibrant IT ecosystems in the world.

Just so you can get a sense of the scale yourself, you can see a picture of the keynote here

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One of the major announcements of the week, was the availability of the new release of their flagship desktop operating system Windows 8. If you didn’t catch it on the news wire, Microsoft confirmed that Windows 8 is on track to Release to Manufacturing (RTM) the first week of August. For enterprise customers with Software Assurance benefits, they will have full access to Windows 8 bits as early as August.

There were many new features and enhancements discussed during the course of the week, but most of the excitement centred around the potential for devices such as Surface and the new Metro style user interface and applications. It is certainly going to be exciting to see how all of the OEMs, service providers and application developers innovate to exploit the platform for customer value. Here at Computacenter we have already started to look how we integrate it into our existing ‘Contemporary Workplace’ framework of solutions and services – whether it be advice, supply, deployment, integration or management that is needed for an effective outcome for our client’s users.

So, come the end of the year there is going to be another credible option for Enterprise organisations that wish to deliver touch based applications and services on slick, lean and powerful tablet devices. With Apple’s almost ubiquitous iPad already established as the market leader and Microsoft’s dominance of the corporate desktop platform (backed by the sort of ecosystem covered above) – the fight for market dominance is going to be monumental battle to watch.

The good news is that we can help our clients either way – but which way do you think the battle will swing or do you think there is room for both?

Generation Z research

As I’m writing this blog, our Press Department is swinging in to action to publicise some very intriguing results that have arisen from an independent survey we recently commissioned.

We have investigated one of the hottest topics in the news the ‘consumerisation of IT’ and BYOD, which confirms there has been a significant shift in IT thinking which is mainly end user led and driven by the sophistication and proliferation of consumer devices in the workplace

However, the research has thrown up an anomaly that suggests IT departments have potentially misjudged the attitudes of young workers towards new workplace technology trends and their demands for consumer devices at work.

Interestingly more than half of 16-24yr olds in the workplace – dubbed ‘Generation Z’ – state they don’t want an iPhone or tablet device in the office, and that they believe that it is more important for companies to stay in control of data than to embrace consumerisation.

Even more surprisingly given the growth of social media apps, 85 % of Generation Z employees surveyed actually prefer to communicate with their work colleagues face-to-face, with only 17 per cent voting for using instant messaging or social media networks.

Generation Z just want to be given the right tools to do the job; although they have grown up with instant messaging and high-tech gadgets, they don’t necessarily want to bring them to work.

IT departments need to avoid getting caught up in the hype surrounding consumerisation – it is just one of many enablers for today’s contemporary workplace, but organisations do need to address the growing flexible working requirements and the  heightened performance expectations of the technology demanded by members of staff – young and old.

Experience shows that when corporate IT systems prevent workers from delivering their best – that is when they can start to take matters into their own hands. Connecting people (to people) and information, simply and efficiently, remains the core objective.

Having cast doubt on the current widespread assumption that Generation Z, who have grown up with smartphones and social networks, are driving the ‘device rebellion’ in Enterprises, you might want to read the full report… it makes for an interesting read.

The Contemporary Workplace – So What?

Hello and welcome to my blog. It’s the first time I’ve written a public blog and whilst I’m active on plenty of other social media tools such as Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn I must admit to being slightly apprehensive as to whether this form of communication will turn into an interactive dialogue. I guess you’ll be the judge of that!

As for the role, I am the Business Line Director for our Workplace & Software solutions across Computacenter’s (CC) client base. My primary responsibilities include the strategy, sales, marketing, vendor alignment and implementation of Computacenter’s portfolio of workplace and software based solutions and services. My team work with corporate and government clients to provide advice and guidance across the entire infrastructure including the delivery of solutions to source, transform, optimise and manage their workplace and software technology

Talking of the team, I was really pleased to see their efforts rewarded last week when we scooped four wins at the Adobe Channel Awards. Of the fifteen award categories, they were recognised for their hard work during 2011 with four wins, including Reseller Partner of the Year and Channel Partner of the Year for Acrobat, Creative Suite and Hobbyist Products.

Now I did get a bit of “so what” feedback with comments like “It’s only document viewing software”, but have you stopped to think just how pervasive products like Adobe have become in today’s world? It’s hard to find a corporate web-site that doesn’t provide product information, investor information, manuals, brochures (the list goes on…) all presented in the ubiquitous PDF format. I even submitted my Tax Return in PDF format this year!

These tools are also empowering creative teams, designers and content providers to develop rich interactive apps with creative and engaging content that spans the rapid proliferation of mobile devices and associated browsers. This is why we think we will we continue to see momentum grow for products such as Adobe in the future as they have become an indispensable part of our contemporary workplace today.

I wonder how long it will be before you open your next PDF? My bet is that it’ll be sooner than you think!