Application and desktop virtualisation empowers UK central government department to meet mobile workers’ needs for greater efficiency and flexibility
DCLG, the UK government’s Department for Communities and Local Government, is working with Citrix and systems integrator Fujitsu to transform its IT operations, transforming the workplace by giving employees mobile access to the apps and data they need to work more efficiently. Through Citrix technology DCLG is empowering a mobile workforce whilst controlling cost and maintaining security.
DCLG has deployed Citrix NetScaler Gateway, Citrix XenApp and Citrix XenMobile as key components in the organisation’s shift to a more agile and cost efficient IT infrastructure. The project has:
- Introduced a virtual desktop solution based on XenApp and thin-client terminals in office spaces
- Enabled secure remote access to XenApp desktops across a range of devices
- Permitted offline working on personal devices via XenMobile with its suite of Worx mobile apps
- Allowed DCLG to offer a bring your own device (BYOD) service - the fastest and least-expensive way to provision a new user (requiring only a user profile and authentication key)
The key benefits of this Citrix deployment include:
- Increased user satisfaction and workforce flexibility - DCLG staff have embraced the new technology and the mobile workstyles it supports
- 40 per cent savings on desktop and infrastructure budget - Each thin-client terminal, running an open source operating system, is cost effective to run and also frees DCLG from the traditional and expensive PC upgrade cycle
- Improved organisational agility – The virtual desktop solution has also enabled DCLG to become more agile. Its offices have moved to a desk-to-staff ratio of 70 per cent, with the possibility of decreasing this further in the future. Staff can sit wherever is best for their day’s work, grouping together easily to form virtual project teams or simply sitting closer to the facilities they need
As a result of this deployment DCLG is supporting government rationalisation of real estate, further lowering costs, while providing a modern working environment that encourages cross-team collaboration. The virtualisation solution also provides better support for specialist users. Fee-paid staff, who only work with DCLG occasionally, can be issued an authentication key fob and credentials so that they can securely access DCLG resources without a department-owned laptop. The DCLG virtual desktop solution has attracted interest from other government departments, which are exploring how it might be applied to their particular scenarios.
We have saved around 40 per cent on our desktop budget. We used to spend around £7 million a year providing PC desktops, and we now spend £4 million per year on a better service that users prefer. If I want to deploy new software, it is much easier and faster to do on the central Citrix servers rather than on every individual desktop. The best part is that our user satisfaction scores have increased by 50 percentage points since we implemented the new Citrix solution. In our last IT pulse survey, over 80 per cent of our users told us that their technology enables them to work flexibly and efficiently, 59 per cent said that their work technology is as good as they have at home and 78 per cent said that overall, their IT has improved in the last 12 months.
- Darren Scates
CIO and technology leader
The public sector is under continued pressure to innovate whilst achieving more with less. DCLG is an excellent example of an organisation that has put innovation at the forefront of everything it does, empowering workers and transforming the work environment. By centralising and securing data and applications, DCLG is giving workers the tools to work more smartly wherever they may be whilst significantly reducing costs.
- Jason Tooley
UK & Ireland country manager
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