You'd think that customer relationships that have been built over time ensure loyalty. Think again. The truth is that, given the amount of choice customers have today, a long relationship doesn't ensure anything more than a foot in the door. For Bangalore-based New Wave Computing, a VDI implementation for a 13-year-old customer, Span Infotech, was going to bring that lesson home.
The Road less Travelled
Span Infotech is a growing software services firm with offices in Bangalore and across the US. It currently has 1,300 employees in India and expects to double its employee-strength over the next couple of years. One of the biggest challenges for the IT team at Span was provisioning, monitoring, and managing its end-user computing environment.
"We are distributed across different locations in Bangalore and have a lot of short-term projects. So, employees have to be shuffled between projects and offices. This became a challenge for us. We had also started recruiting a lot of people. Giving all of them desktops was not going to work well for us because we had to keep re-assigning new machines to them," says Krishnama Raju, CTO, Span Infotech.
A traditional desktop infrastructure approach would not address the dynamic requirements of Span. "Desktop procurement normally takes four to five weeks. This leads to a big delay. For a dynamic environment where developers work on varying platforms, managing infrastructure centrally was critical," says Vasudevan Subramanian, managing director, New Wave Computing.
To get around this challenge, Span was renting desktops. But this was proving to be a substantial investment with no returns. Neither did renting really get around the problem of reducing the time it took to provision new desktops for projects. At the same time Span also had plans to enable a work-from-home culture that adhered to the company's strict security and compliance standards.
Given these multiple needs, virtual desktop infrastructure, it seemed, was an ideal solution for Span, and that's what Span's long-standing partner, New Wave, suggested to the company.
For over a decade, New Wave has been providing infrastructure, datacenter, and computing solutions to Span. But the question was: Would Span give New Wave the project?
Costing and Competition
New Wave comprehensively studied the current and future requirements of Span and proposed a VMware VDI solution using existing IBM server and storage infrastructure with Samsung thin clients as the end-point.
The customer, however, wanted to evaluate other options.
It approached Citrix along with Dell as its hardware partner for a similar VDI solution. Citrix, being a strong player in the VDI space, seemed to have an equal chance at winning the deal. What could tilt the deal in Citrix's favor was that the parent company of Span was already using a Citrix solution.
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