If it’s good enough for the Government…

“We are having a problem delivering new PCs to all of our users — we need to get out of this refresh cycle. Help me think outside the box.” — CIO large government agency

That’s how a recent conversation started with the CIO of a large government agency. I had recently sat down with him to talk about his challenge with providing new PCs to his users on a 3-4 year basis. It was costly and he just didn’t have the IT staff to get these new PCs to all of his workers in remote locations. His request was simple: challenge him and help him think outside the box for a new desktop delivery model.

This led us down the path of BYOPC initiatives that many companies are beginning to embrace — at first, he was skeptical to say the least. But I talked about how he could give his employees either a lump sum of $2000, and let them purchase the PC of their choice OR just let his home workers use their home PC. Using one of the various flavors of desktop and application virtualization, he could allow all of these “unmanaged” or “untrusted” devices to have secure access to all of the applications and data that the managed PCs had before. In addition, his users would get to use the PC of their choice (which was a big deal for him as his organization was trying to recruit younger workers) and furthermore, he could offload all hardware support to the Geek Squads of the world.

After 40 minutes of conversation, he was sold! To be honest, I picked on this one example because I typically think of the Government as less sophisticated (maybe “risky” is better). But even stodgy government agencies are looking to BYOPC to cut costs and appease a new generation of workers. If it’s good enough for them, it’s good enough for everyone, right?

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