Category Archives: Roadmap

Microsoft RTM Release


On Thursday 11 October, Microsoft announced the RTM of Office 2013, SharePoint 2013, Exchange 2013, Lync 2013, and Project + Visio 2013.  But, what does that mean for customers and what other dates are important?

If you are lucky enough to attend the Microsoft SharePoint in Las Vegas, 12-15 November 2012, then you’ll get all the details.  In the meantime, here are a few key items to put into your calendar:

  • Mid-November – Volume licensing customers with Software Assurance will be able to download the Office 2013 applications as well as other Office products including SharePoint 2013, Lync 2013 and Exchange 2013 through the Volume Licensing Service Center.
  • Mid-November – IT professionals and developers will be able to download the final version via their TechNet or MSDN subscriptions.
  • December – Office 2013 applications as well as other Office products including SharePoint 2013, Lync 2013 and Exchange 2013 will be available on the Volume Licensing price list on 1 December
  • First quarter 2013. General availability of Office 2013 applications as well as other Office products including SharePoint 2013, Lync 2013 and Exchange 2013 is planned for the early 2013

Customers who are already using Office 365 should start seeing updates from November onwards, featuring some the newly released capabilities.

By Microsoft previous release standard, this is probably the largest ranging and most ambitious release to date.  The amount of products covered in this release covers most of the Office, server and cloud families.  Every one of these components has received an overhaul and focuses much more on the user experience than ever before.  It also incorporates the touch friendly design that will be available on Windows 8 – and opens new doors for portables for socializing, reading, note-taking, meetings, etc.

Are you planning on upgrading to these new families?

Are you looking at deploying Windows 8 within your organization?

HiberniaEvros will be able to discuss all these technologies in much more detail with you, and perhaps assist you planning your technology roadmap and activities.

Dublin 01439 6803 salesdub@hetg.ie
Waterford 051 339900 saleswat@hetg.ie
Cork 021 4520044 salescork@hetg.ie
Kildare 045 531262 saleskil@hetg.ie

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Filed under 2012, Events, Microsoft, Roadmap

Yammer becomes SharePoint?


With Microsoft’s not so recent acquisition of Yammer, it sets the scene for an interesting battle on the corporate social media arena.  Not only does Microsoft take on other big players like Jive and Tibbr, but they are also to some extent competing with their own future release of SharePoint 2013.

At the moment, Yammer sits outside the Microsoft farms and is essentially a standalone product.  But it’s widely assumed, or should I say expected, that Yammer will be adopted into the Microsoft family like any other products/companies Microsoft has bought in recent years.

This integration with Microsoft’s infrastructure and product suites will only strengthen Yammer’s position in the market, as they will get a much wider reach with the access to Microsoft datacenters and Cloud technology.

Continue reading

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Filed under Microsoft, Roadmap

iPhone 5 is coming


In just a few days the iPhone 5 will be revealed by Apple, at the San Francisco’s Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, which Apple normally uses for such events.  The event will begin at 10am Pacific Time (or 1pm EST), just in case you received an invite and is planning on attending the unveiling.

So, what new wonders will the next generation iPhone deliver to the audience?

  • Photos have been circulated in recent months that the iPhone 5 will have a larger 4-inch screen
  • The dock connector is most likely changing into a smaller port, which also means you need to change some of the docking peripherals
  • New high-speed LTE connection will most likely feature too, which will put pressure on your data plan
  • It will no doubt be delivered with iOS 6, the new mobile software Apple revealed back in June

Are you getting the new iPhone 5?

What features do you think will be delivered?

Although the iPhone 5 mightn’t hit the European markets for some weeks, I’m sure the first indicators from the US will determine whether this will be another cool device released by Apple.  I’m still wondering how much more they can push the technology and whether consumers will continue to buy these awesome devices.

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Filed under 2012, Apple, Review, Roadmap

Going 360


Most technology providers offer a large range of managed services, but most times they don’t deliver a full package or solution.

HiberniaEvros are starting something new.  Well, in reality it’s something that’s already offered in the marketplace, we just go full circle.  Let me introduce our 360 service.

360 is about more than just Managed Services. We can incorporate products and services from across the entire HiberniaEvros Technology Group. These include cloud services from Digital Planet with our own in-house designed and managed cloud environment, resourcing solutions from Technical Staffing Services division, Managed Print Services from our dedicated team of print experts, and access to the widest range of product supply and procurement options.

More news are to be revealed shortly, explaining the full details of the new offerings.  Keep your eyes on our web sites, Facebook, Twitter and blog sites.  More to come.

HiberniaEvros is an IT Managed Services specialist providing a complete range of outsourcing, support and data centre services.

The HiberniaEvros Managed Services Division offers a range of services that keep your mission critical ICT infrastructures operating. 360 is our flagship service designed to deliver exactly the services you need.

To find out more, email 360@hetg.iecall 1890 911 211 or contact your nearest HiberniaEvros office

Dublin 01439 6803 salesdub@hetg.ie
Waterford 051 339900 saleswat@hetg.ie
Cork 021 4520044 salescork@hetg.ie
Kildare 045 531262 saleskil@hetg.ie

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Filed under 2012, Roadmap, The Organisation

Dilemma of training your staff


It is always an uphill battle to keep yourself and your staff up-to-date with recent technologies and new features in products/services you deliver.  On one side you need to make sure you are out making money and on the other hand you need to make sure your staff can deliver on latest changes.

It’s worthwhile noting that many of your clients are most likely fully tuned into the newest technologies and would be expecting to get these implemented or updated next time you visit or engage them.  It looks somewhat inefficient and creates poor reputation, if your staff is not fully up-to-speed on the latest HP Server hardware features or Microsoft applications.

Training is good, but it does come at a price.  Also, the level of training you provide to your staff needs to be considered.

The following topics attempts to cover some of the considerations you should make before approving training requirements or at least consider these as part of your training strategy.

Online v Classroom

The debate regarding online v classroom is still something that needs to be engaged within the organisation.  Why?  Well, often online training is significantly cheaper and can be done at the participants pace.  However, it does still require a level of self-discipline to complete these courses and you (the sponsor) still need to monitor progress of courses.

So, some of the benefits to be considered are the fact that you save money and your staff could potentially do the training when they are less busy, allowing you full access to the resource for projects / engagements.

Classroom allows the participant to network with other classroom participants, and allows for a healthy technical discussion during the various exercises.  It might even allow your staff to promote the organisation and increase some revenue, which is a free PR exercise.  On the downside, you need to accept higher cost and also that your staff can represent you positively and negatively – make sure your staff understands this responsibility.

Certification

Do you really need a certificate?

Some certificates are a simple printout and has no relevance to the actual course.   The company providing the course merely gives the participant a certificate that they attended.

On the other hand, certification can be very valuable when engaging a client on specific projects.  It gives the client a level of comfort that the consultant has the appropriate knowledge about the product, ensuring that the solution is deployed using best practice.

Certificates required an exam to be completed and passed, which tests the participants in their knowledge and comprehension.  So it will give a good indication of whether the employee engaged in the course, understood the content and actually participated in the course.

Building CV

One important aspect to consider, no matter how painful it might be, is that employees often use training courses and certificates to improve their CV.  It doesn’t necessarily mean that your staff is leaving, but it does mean that he/she might become more attractive in the market and may leave.

Training contract

Whether you allow online or classroom training, I would still suggest that you have some sort of training contract for your employee.  Why?

Well, it gives you some bargaining power if you employee decide to leave.  If you have an agreement in place that states that employees have to repay e.g. 75% of  training cost if they leave within 12 months, then employees might reconsider jumping ship.  Depending on the cost and duration of training course, you might consider extending the agreement to cover year 2 and year 3, each reducing the percentage the employee has to pay back.

Role Specific Training

One question I always ask is whether the training is relevant to the person’s role.  If it’s relevant and will enhance the team’s effectiveness, then I’ll approve it.  If this is just a training course to satisfy a personal desire to get better with e.g. programming, and has nothing to do with the person’s role, then I would reject it.

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In reality, all organisations have to consider the cost for every training is part of the budget.  Sending staff on training whenever they want is no longer an option and should be used an incentive to perform and provide the organisation with an improved skill-set to engage new and more clients.

It’s very important to keep staff up-to-date and motivated, but it all has to be done with the budget in mind.

Happy training!

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Filed under Projects, Review, Roadmap

Come Join Us!


HiberniaEvros invites you to attend a half day seminar, focussing primarily on the practical aspects surrounding the deployment of Microsoft Exchange Server 2010.  The seminar will also review the strategy and options for migrating to Office 365 – Office in the Cloud.

Our guest speaker is Tony Redmond who will be discussing what the Microsoft Exchange 2010 technology can do for your company and how best to deploy it to meet business goals.

After the seminar, you should have a much better understanding of:

  • How Exchange 2010 and Office 365 will help you increase productivity of systems and staff
  • See how Exchange 2010 and Office 365 safeguards your business information
  • Look and understand the cloud vs. on premise options
  • Deploy an efficient Enterprise mail environment

When and Where?

When:  Wednesday, 11th May 2011

Time: 8:30am – 12:00pm

–          Please arrive before 8.30, so we can kick off on time.

Where:  Microsoft Ireland

Building 3
Carmanhall Road
Sandyford Industrial Estate
Dublin 18

How do you register?  Just click the below icon and fill in the form.

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Agenda

8:45 – 9:15 –  Registration
9:15 – 9:25 – Welcome with Martin Cullen, Microsoft
9:25 – 9:45 – Office 365 with Jeremy Showalter, Microsoft
9:45 – 9:55 – Introducing Tony Redmond with John Kennedy,Sales Director, HiberniaEvros
9:55 – 10:45 – Essential considerations for Exchange 2010 deployments with Tony Redmond
10:45 – 11:15 – Q&A with Tony Redmond

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Filed under Review, Roadmap, Services

Exchange 2010 and Office 365 – want to know more?


The evolution of Exchange has come a long way since 1993, which is not even two decades, and the latest version of Exchange could potentially change the way organisations deal with emails and Office documents.

Many SMEs, but also large corporations, are looking at ways to secure and improve their Exchange infrastructure.  Most of these solutions often involve buying a lot of expensive hardware and implement complex active directory structures to secure the data.

Furthermore, I would expect that about 80% of any organisation’s correspondence is done using email.  Gone are the days of printing and sending letters, ignoring invoices for a minute, so an increased focus is being given towards new and improved solutions.

Many staff is also getting more and more mobile, in order to meet client needs, and might be working from outside the office.  This results in higher reliance on the end-user’s laptop and how data is secured on these.

Even worse, many of these applications, such as hard drive encryption, cost a fortune and are another application to administer.

The last thing you want is an unsecure laptop; with hundreds of confidential files go missing.  What happens if the hard drive stops responding?  This could potentially be a severe PR incident for your organisation.

Microsoft have for years been leading the way in regards to corporate email.  In recent months, the latest generation of Exchange (2010) was updated with Service Pack 1.  This pack has fixed a lot of security flaws and added new features, and the product is now ready to be deployed globally.  Not in the traditional way, by telling IT departments around the World to upgrade their infrastructure.  Instead Microsoft has created an Exchange infrastructure that is aimed at sitting in the cloud.

  • How does that impact organisations?
  • What’s the security model?
  • What’s the network impact?
  • Do we need to upgrade our link to the Internet?
  • Will it backwards compatible?
  • How much will this cost?

In order to answer all these questions and a lot more, HiberniaEvros are inviting companies to attend a morning seminar, where we will be exploring new deployments and also the migration (upgrade) path of Exchange 2010.  The session will furthermore look at how companies can deploy Office 365.

HiberniaEvros has persuaded a leading specialist on Exchange to speak at this event.  Tony Redmond is one of the leading experts in the world on Microsoft Collaboration technology.  It will be a more practical approach to a deployment, and not too technical, so the event will be of great interest to CTO’s and CIO’s, who are considering upgrading to Exchange 2010.

The new advances in Microsoft® Exchange Server 2010 bring new levels of reliability and performance to help companies control their cost and at the same time manage the complexity of providing a business class e-mail solution.  HiberniaEvros has resources available to assist you with developing your Exchange migration path.

HiberniaEvros are pleased to be able to present this free seminar featuring Tony Redmond to our clients – and of course companies who wish to explore this topic in more detail.

Want to you know more?

Keep checking this site for registration details or visit the main HiberniaEvros site.

More to follow soon!

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Filed under Review, Roadmap, Services

IT topics in 2011 … Are you planning ahead?


As previous years, most businesses have started planning for the new year, in regards to both projects and budget.  With the new budget released December 2010 and the new Finance Act 2011, businesses are looking closer at what they spend, and whether the projects are crucial to the business operations.  Crucial meaning whether the project is essential to the organisations future development or whether it’s just a nice-to-have project.

There are a number of interesting business software trends on the horizon for 2011. Some of these will significantly impact IT organisations, which plan to align itself with business objectives.  IT managers need to keep these in mind when planning, changing or looking for the competitive advantage.

So, what are these trends and what is HiberniaEvros’ take on these?

Mobile computing: With the introduction of the new tablet devices from Samsung, Apple, Dell, and HP, additional considerations needs to be given to mobilising the business applications used for your staff.  More and more applications are becoming thin clients sitting on mobile devices, and IT departments need to deploy mobility servers granting these thin clients access to corporate data.

If not designed correctly, this could have negative impact on the company, potentially exposing confidential data or costing too much money to develop/maintain.  But furthermore, IT departments will have to familiarise themselves with new technologies and move outside their normal comfort zones.

New OS platforms are introduced, new security concerns, extended catalogue of supported devices and the business is now driving the IT roadmap.  The days of the IT department saying NO to deploying new technologies are gone and now they have to react to business demands.

Back To Basics: Companies have, due to the impact of the recession, been forced to make drastic decisions on how to operate IT departments and also how to support the business with limited or fewer resources.  Unfortunately, the brutal fact is that business most go on, despite having lost 20% of the work force or 25% of the IT budget.

IT departments have to adapt to this change.  This trend is set to continue in 2011, despite the so-called positive upturn in the economy.  So, 201 will force companies to look at their operating costs and where these can be optimised.  Please note I didn’t say removed, but optimised.

IT Management has to look at outsourcing both services such as maintenance, but also analyse if it might be feasible to outsource data hosting.  Outsourcing your data is obviously a concern, but if you discuss the requirements and concerns with your service provider, then you will see that it’s actually a very cost-effective and secure solution.

Consolidate the amount of vendors in use, by looking at all the products / services the organisation avail of.  This will allow companies to negotiate better prices with vendors, based on more services purchased.  Yes, you might have more eggs in one basket, but you have to weigh up the risks against the cost of running the organisation.

For SME’s running SaaS applications might be an option, but you need to be careful that you get all the cost details for running these; connectivity required (i.e. internet connection), customizations required and data migration.  Cloud computing buzz will continue well into 2012, but you need to cross check the solution, as if you sign the dotted line, it might be difficult to back out at a later stage.

What this comes down to is paying attention to the SLAs provided by the supplier, and how these are managed.

Living in a Virtualized environment: Virtualizing servers and applications has been done for years now and we are all very good at it.  Physical servers are becoming a commodity, providing the brain and power to the various applications running on them.  But, what’s the next step in virtualization?

The latest trend is to explore the possibility of letting staff using their own purchased hardware run corporate applications – securely.  What?  Yes, let your staff bring in the Mac, Sony, HP, etc. equipment, and provide them with a secure ‘bubble’ to the corporate infrastructure.  This means IT department needs to look at virtualizing not only hardware, but also corporate applications.  It’s not easy to set-up, but once created, it’s fairly straight forward to maintain.

However, you need to re-skill your IT staff, allowing them to become masters in virtualizing hardware and applications.

Businesses in 2011, I’m sure,will be developing strategies to incorporate these new trends and options, which will stretch the boundaries and comfort zones of most IT professionals.  Some might even refuse to move with this trend.

But, where does this leave suppliers/resellers like HiberniaEvros?

Well, HiberniaEvros can provide service to most of these new trends and HiberniaEvros will have to adapt to our customers requirements.  Please contact us to discuss your 2011 plans and we’ll be more than happy to develop them further with you, based on your requirements.

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Filed under 2011, HiberniaEvros, Roadmap