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Retail Technology, Retail technology News

Co-operative gets good with apps

Thursday February 17 2011

UK retail giant, the Co-operative Group, is using specialist third-party application migration consulting and tools to define a major desktop transformation project

UK retail giant, the Co-operative Group, is using specialist third-party application migration consulting and tools to define a major desktop transformation projectBy Miya Knights

 

Co-operative HQ interior designThe Group is now migrating its PC desktop estate to a Citrix Xen architecture-based ‘thin client’ virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) in conjunction with a phased move to new head offices in Manchester (interior design pictured).

 

It is using AppTitude from specialist provider App-DNA to determine application virtualisation suitability ahead of migration, and form part of the longer-term strategy for application lifecycle management.

 

Modernising desktop strategy

 

Ian Cawson, technical architect for the Co-operative Group, told Retail Technology: “The thin client project is part of an initiative we started two years ago to address the energy impact of the ‘fat PC’. It is more flexible for users, who can log on from anywhere, as well as more efficient to support and secure from a central location.”

 

He continued: “But we knew this would mean managing application sprawl. But AppTitude is giving us visibility of what applications we can package for the new environment so we can consolidate the application estate too.”

 

He said that the application audit and packaging exercise, which will continue in a phased approach through to 2012, saved time on the project and money from those applications that could be retired because they no longer needed support.

 

“It has also saved us time on migrating from Windows XP to 7 and Windows Server 2002 to 2007 R2,” Cawson added. “AppTitude’s ‘traffic light’ visibility is helping us quantify the costs of not only migration, but support and management going forward.”

 

Part of wider business strategy

 

The project forms part of a wider business IT initiative to improve business agility, support new working practices, lower costs and meet carbon emission targets that has already seen it implement a ‘Wake on LAN’ (local area network) programme to run its tills instore more efficiently.

 

The overall project will lead to significant improvements in flexibility, productivity and mobility, and savings of £2m per year are predicted along with a 35% reduction in carbon footprint by 2017.