Ikano, when non core activities become heart ! Part 3: the Luxembourg IT asset

  [question]Does working close to top management reinforce your role […]

July 10, 2012


[question]Does working close to top management reinforce your role as a CIO ?[/question][answer]

Certainly. And it also provides for a really demanding working environment.

[/answer][question]Are they all as much involved in Ikano’s IT evolution?[/question][answer]

Of course and we try to respond to their demands by innovating as well. For example, we are redefining the mobility tools we use. We had this idea a few years ago, but the technology was not evolved enough. Today, we want to provide the whole working environment to each employee, wherever he/she is located.

[/answer][question]Are you talking about Desktop Virtualisation ?[/question][answer]

Exactly. With today’s technology we can deploy the same environment whether the person is located in an Ikano office, in a hotel, at home or elsewhere.

[/answer][question]Do you find in Luxembourg the support you need to answer the demands of internationally-minded people?[/question][answer]

Unfortunately, in this case, we have to say that there are several « bottlenecks » in Luxembourg. Sometimes, because local players are too small, they cannot provide for the solutions that are required for an international environment like ours. It can sometimes penalise us, especially for mobile and land-based telecommunications. For example, we deployed an MPLS and the local propositions presented in response to our call for tenders were not extremely competitive.

We should also admit that the Luxembourg offering is sometimes not at the same level as what is being done in other countries, like in terms of quality of service. I have a very strong affinity with Luxembourg, but when we need to find a partner for a group-level contract, we can see that Luxembourg is not as competitive as we’d like to believe. From a European or global point of view we are not always the best location. I think we should be a little more realistic or modest about this reality. The country’s size means that we cannot excel in everything. I think it would be best to develop excellence centres instead of wanting to cover everything.

[/answer][question]What are your other current IT projects ?[/question][answer]

Not long ago we organised a workshop to discuss amongst other things the use of Ipads and communication tools. I was surprised to discover that managers were not really interested in having a pad. I thought these new kinds of tools would be really fancied, but instead people prefer lighter and better performing laptops that start and can be used quickly. With desktop virtualisation and SSDs, we think that these tools will better respond to our needs. We of course keep the company smartphones for communication purposes, even if there are still choices to be made or confirmed.

Like many other companies, a challenge we’ll soon need to face is the convergence between the tools used for professional and personal purposes. We have triggered an internal debate to find out what equipment and hardware are needed, and how we want to define the frontiers between the professional world and the personal sphere. When you consider that people are really mobile and can work 12-hour days or even longer schedules, do we need to keep access to personal emails and social networks open? More and more often we’ll see people coming and going between those two spheres during working hours, which raises questions of security, information confidentiality, etc.

[/answer][question]Any issues caused by the renovation and moving out of the offices?[/question][answer]

Not really. As already mentioned this renovation was a great opportunity to catch up in the field of some technological aspect. Data Centre was one, new workstation running Windows 7, the 2010 Office suite, etc. is an other exemple. We’re also working on installing Windows Server 2008, SQL Server 2008, etc. Finally, everyone use now VoIP, which will mean not only using IP but extending the tool to manage employees’ presence and their choice of communication tools.

When we put the systems in place it feels a little like playing with wool. The more you pull on one thread, the more comes into view; we discover new opportunities, and we always have more to offer.”

Our best advantage is our long-term strategy. Clearly, we work much more serenely…

Watch video

In the same category