Making a case for the virtual workforce


On 17 June, I will be speaking at a gathering of industry professionals at the annual Cloud World Forum in London. CWF is one of industry’s premier events gathering together leading vendors and IT decision makers from across EMEA. It always promises a healthy round of debate on cloud/virtualisation trends, and how the market is likely to develop in coming years. I’ll present on how cloud and as-a-service delivery models are impacting the provision of flexible workspace infrastructure and especially pointing to lessons learned from Colt’s own implementation.As early as 2012, Colt initiated a process of converting its own desktop infrastructure to a virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) for all its permanent and contracted employees, a significant move for over 5,000 strong workforce.For Colt, the move to a totally enabled workspace as a service was technically the smart move. We already had a mature virtual server infrastructure in place and had the ability – as my colleague Hugo Harber points out in his own blog – to understand, and roll-out, a complex Workspace project.As BYOD and virtual workspace usage gathered pace within Colt’s own workforce, this flexible workspace implementation became more critical and key to delivering the aims of the business. The balance we had to strike was how to maintain a manageable IT environment, for example being able to secure and control external devices without inhibiting employees from embracing a more flexible working model.But as some of you who plan to attend Cloud World Forum may be asking yourselves – how do you really make this is happen and what are the real problems facing organisations when moving to a workspace model? And in the end will we realise the benefits promised to my organisation?The message of improved simplicity, and realising business benefit, were at the heart of our business case – but the move to flexible working was much more of a corporate change programme rather than a technology project. I’m keen to explain just how we went about this and share our own hard-won experience at Cloud World Forum. I look forward to seeing you there.Steve Hughes will present the Cloud World Forum Masterclass “Five lessons learned in delivering a cloud-based workforce” on 17 June at 4pm. For updates during Cloud World Forum, please follow @Colt_Technology and @ColtandtheCloud including the hashtag: #CloudWF or to arrange a meeting with a member of the team please find details of Colt’s attendance here: http://www.colt.net/uk/en/events/cloud-world-forum-en.htmThe Colt team is also participating in the VMware vForum 2014. Meet us in Paris or Milan on June 5th, in London on June 11th and Manchester on July 8th.

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