The Reject Shop needed to meet the needs of its business employees and its IT staff while spending less on IT infrastructure. At the same time, the company wanted to update its operating environment and simplify PC management across the organization.
In March 2012, the company began a phased adoption of Windows Intune, and now The Reject Shop can support PCs and mobile devices anywhere employees work, while streamlining IT management and reducing costs.
For more than 30 years, The Reject Shop has delivered discount variety shopping to Australian consumers. Based in Melbourne, Victoria, The Reject Shop operates 250 stores throughout Australia and two regional distribution centers in Victoria and Queensland.
The IT team at The Reject Shop manages IT infrastructure and services for supply chain, point-of-sale, human resources, payroll, and other business systems. The team manages more than 250 desktop PCs, portable PCs, and mobile devices for employees in the
company’s corporate offices and distribution centers. Many employees at The Reject Shop work remotely and are often disconnected from the company network while traveling.
Most company computers still ran the Windows XP operating system, and the IT team had to manage separate tools for distributing and updating software, safeguarding against malicious software (malware), and enforcing network access requirements. “We did not
have a widely deployed, holistic solution for PC management,” says Darren O’Connor, CIO at The Reject Shop. “Every time we added another tool, we added complexity and IT staff time.”
The Reject Shop needed to update its operating environment and simplify PC management. It wanted to improve its ability to monitor and manage software assets, make it easier on IT staff and mobile employees to update computers, and allow more employees to
use mobile devices such as smartphones and tablet PCs. To meet the needs of employees while reducing its IT infrastructure burden, The Reject Shop eventually wants to deliver all PC services and applications by using cloud technology—computing resources that
are delivered and consumed online. “We wanted to adopt systems that would fit into our plan to deliver full PC network support to employees in their office, in a store, at home, on the road, in a hotel room, anywhere—and with a device of their choice,” says
When The Reject Shop decided to upgrade to the Windows 7 Enterprise operating system, it began a pilot program in the IT department to evaluate Windows Intune, a cloud-based PC-management and security service from Microsoft. After positive trial results,
the IT team added new devices to the pilot as they were exchanged in the upgrade to Windows 7.
||By using Windows Intune, we save significant time and effort for our most valuable staff resources, people who are in high demand and who we can use more effectively in other areas.
| Darren O’Connor
CIO, The Reject Shop
By March 2012, The Reject Shop completed its upgrade to Windows 7. With support from Data#3—a member of the Microsoft Partner Network—the company began a phased adoption of Windows Intune. By July 2012, the company was using Windows Intune to manage 250 devices
in its corporate offices, its distribution centers, and carried by mobile employees. “Because Windows Intune is a comprehensive cloud-based service, we can manage all our PCs and mobile devices in one process, whether they are in the next office or 2,000 kilometers
away, on or off the company network,” says O’Connor.
The IT team no longer relies on remote and mobile employees to connect to the company network and download antimalware updates. “With Windows Intune, if employees connect to the Internet at all, they get the updates they need automatically,” says O’Connor.
“It helps us maintain a more secure environment.”
By using the software asset management tools in Windows Intune, the IT team can determine where DVD software and other hardware drivers vary between devices and how they could potentially affect application performance. “The visibility we get with Windows
Intune is fantastic for developing a standardized operating environment that we can manage effectively,” says O’Connor. “We have more than a static view and can react appropriately as things change.”
Since it adopted Windows Intune, The Reject Shop can support PCs and mobile devices anywhere employees work, while streamlining IT management and reducing costs.
PC Support Anywhere
For the first time in years, all of the company’s PCs and other devices are up-to-date with antimalware and other software. “It used to be quite arduous to update employees’ mobile devices,” says O’Connor. “Now we use Windows Intune to keep everybody
current automatically, even when they are working off the company network.”
As The Reject Shop prepares to deliver most of its network services to employees over the Internet, it can use Windows Intune to help ensure that PCs and other devices are managed and updated effectively and that systems work reliably. “We want the flexibility
to let our employees work where they need to with the devices they want, and Windows Intune fits that model 100 percent,” says O’Connor.
Streamlined IT Management
Instead of using several different tools, The Reject Shop uses Windows Intune to simplify and centralize PC management, and the IT team is freed from having to configure and maintain a separate PC management infrastructure. “The simpler we can make it
to manage and help safeguard PCs the better,” says O’Connor. “By using Windows Intune, we save significant time and effort for our most valuable staff resources, people who are in high demand and who we can use more effectively in other areas.”
The Reject Shop will also save money by eliminating some third-party licenses and gaining better insight into its software inventory. “By eliminating several third-party solutions, we almost entirely offset the cost of Windows Intune,” says O’Connor. “With
fine-grained visibility into the software on every device, we can continue to simplify our environment.”
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