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  1. #1
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    Mods Please move to appropriate forum if necessary.

    Oh Lord, a friend of mine has just landed a new job after being made redundant some time ago and is trying to hang on and impress his new boss who has asked him to prepare a report or some kind or discussion document based on the following:

    "The current stste of our IT is based on linked PCs and workstations running DOS, Windows and Unix operating systems. AL OUR SOFTWARE PRODUCTS HAVE BEEN PURCHASED FROM SELECTED SOFTWARE SUPPLIERS.

    These products have been customised to meet the company's specific requirements. The central computing division is at Head Office, which concentrates on all facilities which are central to our company, ie. payroll, accounts, personnel etc. These computers are linked by a series of LAN networks, 5 Regional offices are linked by dial up or direct line phone lines.

    Basically we need to re-vamp the organisation and improve the IT technology system. This is to encompass the knowledge, resources and secure communications required. We need to work via a Virtual Private Network.

    Can you tell me what system we could use to encompass all of these needs with least disruption."

    This is out of my depth and my friend is not sure of the way to do this, so as always when in need of help my first call is here. Can anyone give a few pointers of the best way to go about this? Or shall I just tell him to come clean with his boss and say he's not up to it?

  2. #2
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    [quote name='jaystarter1' post='764781' date='11-Mar-2009 06:07'][/quote]

    I'd recommend that they hire a good consultant and your firend act as the internal project manager. This is such a broad and deep area affecting the whole company it is very easy to overlook important details. It seems as though they do not have the internal expertise. An outside firm with this sort of experience will save them time, money, & a lot of headaches in the long run.

    I'd produce a document that shows some level of research into the existing hardware and software systems at least cataloging them as best he can with a conclusion to hire outside help.

    Joe
    Joe

  3. #3
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    [quote name='jaystarter1' post='764781' date='11-Mar-2009 11:07']Can anyone give a few pointers of the best way to go about this?[/quote]
    This is an enormous project for someone to take on without suitable experience, and your friend has my sympathy.

    If I had to do a project like this then I would start by trying to find answers to some questions.
    1. What services is the IT department providing to the business? If they can't answer this by pointing to a Service Catalog or other similar document then they need to create this as a very early part of any project, to make sure that nothing important gets forgotten.
    2. What value is the IT providing to the organization? I would be very surprised if they can answer this, but if your friend can show that they really understand why this is an important question to ask before looking at the technology then this will help set a business context for what needs doing, and help to set your friends credibility in the organization.
    3. What are the running costs for the current IT infrastructure? Include maintenance, software licenses, staff costs, buildings and infrastructure etc.
    4. What are the typical annual costs for new projects or new infrastructure?
    Armed with this information your friend can now compare the cost of what they are doing now with the cost of any alternate solutions. You can also start to compare the cost of what you deliver with the value that it creates, and with the cost of alternatives such as outsourcing and off-shoring.

  4. #4
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    Thanks Joe and Stuart, and armed with your suggestions he can at least write up and flesh out a document of some sort to show he understands what way to go. Fingers crossed he can find a good outside help and act as go between. I will post back if there are any developments that might be of interest to us here

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