New math for Windows 7 deployments using automation and self service

This is a guest blog post written by Dave Kawula, a Senior Consultant with 1E. Dave was the guest on our January episode of the AlignIT Manager Tech Talk where we talked about how IT managers can take the risk out of their Windows 7 deployment projects. Below Dave details cost savings that can be claimed by implementing automation and self service as part of your deployment project.

Read Dave’s other guest post on rationalizing your apps prior to a Windows 7 deployment >>

signature2 (100x78)

Imagine that you have finally completed the following phases of your project:

Core Architecture, Gold Image Build and Test, Application Rationalization, Testing, Testing, and more Testing

Now you need to get your images deployed to end users…well this is a problem because most organizations lack the forethought to automate this process.

So when it comes to deploying Microsoft’s operating systems there are really two choices that we are normally presented with: Lite Touch and Zero Touch. Let’s take a moment and define both of these:

  • Lite Touch = Some manual intervention from a desktop analyst or from user driven menus.
  • Zero Touch = Fully automated builds when an administrator can choose to deploy operating system upgrades on demand.

Now do either of the above work… the answer is yes absolutely. The issue is that all of this requires Careful coordination and communication to end users. This process normally involves hiring project managers, business analysts, corporation communication specialists, and costly IT Engineering time.

My question is this: We are in a world where we can get applications delivered to all of our phones by simply clicking in a portal and having them magically installed. We can change devices and simply re-deploy these applications from the same portal.

WHAT IF… you could do the same thing for your Windows 7 deployment. Just treat the Windows 7 deployment as nothing more than a complex application. Allowing end users to click on a Windows 7 upgrade icon in a portal. Then have them them schedule their own upgrade for a time that works for them.

Check out this product from 1E Software called yes you guessed it, 1E Shopping:


Does this mean death to the manual spreadsheets… well probably not – we always seem to return to what we know and love. I have personally deployed this product and have seen the impact it has on the classical approach to operating system and software delivery. The only requirement for Shopping is that a customer must already own and have configured System Center Configuration Manager.

The best part of this application is that it can be easily be installed and configured in less than five consulting days.

So I want to wrap up this post with a little bit of simple math for everyone:

  • Assume each Windows 7 Upgrade costs an organization $3000 per desktop.
  • Assume that approximately 50 % of deployed software is not used.
  • Assume that each request for Software costs an organization $200 (BTW This is a really safe number) I haven’t seen it much lower than this.
  • Assume it takes over 5 business days to receive the software after a request.

Now…here is a look at the old way!

Deploy 1000 Desktops x $3,000 each = $300,000 in resource costs

  • Assume 25 applications averaging 100 each with 50 % unused and deployed to all workstations. 25 Apps x 1000 Desktops x $100 Average License Cost = 2.5 /mil investment in software. This would work out to having approximately $2500 in software on each desktop – You all know this number is really low!
  • Assume that the organization receives 20 software deployment requests per week for 52 weeks per year. 20 Request x 52 Weeks x $200 average cost = $208,000 in resource costs to deploy software.
  • Assume that it takes 5 business days to receive your software once requested. Well you do the math on this one – quantify the cost of lost productivity for your employees!!!

How about the new way!!! Take the opportunity to incorporate this organizational change into your Windows 7 projects.

From my previous post on application rationalization:

  • Deployment costs reduced by 30 % simply by “Rationalizing” the number of applications that need to be ported to Windows 7 and automating the delivery mechanisms for the images. You could easily save over $90,000 in soft costs out of the gate.
  • Reduce the amount of Software Renewals, Support, Deployment, and licensing costs. Once again we “Rationalize” all of our apps. Assume a 50% savings for your organization what does that return? How about an estimated 1 /mil + savings in hard and soft costs. By the way – now that you have a tool that helps rationalize this – think of the savings the next time the licensing police come visit you.

Add in savings from using automation and self service:

  • Reduce the amount of annual software deployment costs by over 50%. Savings of over $104,000 in soft costs.

Assume your budget for this Windows 7 project was around $500,000. I will leave you pondering those numbers. Now of course remember there is an acquisition cost of new software that would save money. The nice thing about 1E is that all of their software pretty much pays for itself very quickly.

I hope you have enjoyed this post and I welcome any feedback or if you want to share your experiences with your Windows 7 projects thus far.

About Dave Kawula

clip_image002[4]Dave Kawula is an MCSE and CNE with over fifteen years of experience in the IT industry and a senior consultant with IE. His background includes data communications networks within multi-server LAN/WAN environments. He has experience with project management, network strategic planning, network design and integration. He has led the architecture for NT, SMS/SCCM, Exchange and Internet Gateways, including managing migration paths and issues as well as implementation. He has supported a variety of network infrastructures as well as architecting and defining technical standards.

Email | Twitter | LinkedIn | Blog