One of the first major IT projects that I took a lead role in was to roll out a new email client application to approximately 300 workstations. It was a tremendously daunting task as there were no automated tools at the time (this was in the mid 90's) and a large part of the project was organizing all the IT staff who had to go out and manually do the installations. Myself and another colleague had put together step by step instructions to be followed. It went fairly well, all things considered, but there was definitely a period of troubleshooting that followed as we had to revisit desktops and fix human errors and other installation problems. It was a very time intensive process. And every time there was an update to this or any other desktop application, we had to do it all over again. Thankfully, today there are ways to automate this process, because this certainly isn't the most fun an IT person can have! However, I know there are some organizations that still manage their desktops manually. In this age of competitive business, management should consider if this is really the best way for IT to be spending their time when there are so many ways that technology can be used to drive business forward, rather than simply maintain it.
This month, my colleague Rick Claus has stepped in as the special guest host of the IT Manager Podcast series. He is joined by Wilson Chan from the Durham District School Board and Darin Travis from Microsoft Canada. Listen in as they discuss the Microsoft Desktop Optimization Pack (MDOP) and how the Durham District School Board is using it to make the deployment of software to their various computer labs simple and efficient, while managing everything centrally.