SThree chooses Supportworks ITSM Enterprise to support mobile workforce

SThree has used Hornbill’s Supportworks ITSM Enterprise to provision over a thousand mobile devices global workforce in under two weeks, as part of a corporate BYOD scheme.


SThree has used Hornbill’s Supportworks ITSM Enterprise to provision over a thousand mobile devices global workforce in under two weeks, as part of a corporate BYOD scheme.

Recruitment firm SThree has 2,200 staff using its IT systems across it global operations spanning 20 countries.  With many employees working either remotely or travelling between client meetings, the company needed to find a way to quickly approve authorised apps on mobile devices used by its disparate workforce.

“We wanted to enable our recruitment consultants to have access to their email and calendar while on the move,” Marc Christophides, IT Support Service Delivery Manager at SThree, told ComputerworldUK.   

“Before consultants would have to come into the office, and would not have access to email on the go,” Christophides said. “This frees them up between meetings, particularly when they are trying to sign a deal.  It is all about having a mobile workforce.”

In 2011 SThree replaced its in-house developed work management system with Supportworks hosted on a virtual server in its VMware environment.  This allowed it to poerform request and incident management, enabling the company to adopt ITIL best practice processes.

The Supportworks implementation provided the basis for the automated provisioning of apps on mobile devices once the company decided to implement a BYOD project in 2012.   

With the Supportworks ITSM tool, SThree was able to support 1,100 mobile devices in under two weeks, with access to email and calendaring systems through Good’s GoodMessaging app.  SThree also enabled remote desktop access through Citrix’s Receiver app.

Christophides said that the roll out of devices was straightforward following a pilot scheme, though there were initial concerns from senior staff about the security of allowing so many users access to corporate email.

“It was an automated system so we were able to roll it out very quickly, and we enabled 1,100 accounts in a couple of weeks,” he said. “It was straightforward, once you build the mechanism you just roll it out.” 

“We ran a pilot for a few months, and were really focused on the security element.  There were some really deep concerns about the data security, but once they were allayed, we were given the green light.”

Prior to this, employees used BlackBerry for corporate emails, with costs limiting the number of staff able to access systems on the move.

“We had senior staff with BlackBerry’s, but due to cost this was limited. By using SupportWorks we had more confidence in the data security, and we were able to offer it as a low cost solution.  There were 200 to 300 BlackBerry users, compared to 1,300 Good users now.”

Christophides said that new applications for automated BYOD services can now be approved and activated within 10 minutes across the company’s global operations.  With firm regularly taking on new recruits, this means that new staff can be set up without creating a burden on IT staff.

He added that SThree is also looking to add to the apps available to its workforce in future.

“We are looking at mobile telephony apps, to see if people could piggyback on our global telecoms system,” Christophides said. “We are also looking for apps within Good to deliver business intelligence market data to the device in the same sort of way.”

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