Windows 7 Professional Works as Business Accelerator for IT Consulting Firm
Windows 7 Customer Solution Case Study Windows 7 Seen as Business Accelerator for IT Consulting FirmOverview “Since managed services means we deliver IT supportCountry or Region: United StatesIndustry: IT Consulting, Professional for a fixed monthly fee, we must solve customerServices computer problems fast. Problem Steps RecorderCustomer Profile precisely captures the problem for quick resolution.”With eight offices in five mid-west states, Joddey Hicks, Account Manager, Heartland Technology SolutionsHTS provides its IT expertise to small andmid-sized businesses via 81 engineers andstaff. With an eight-office presence across five states, HeartlandBusiness Situation Technology Solutions (HTS) cuts a wide swath of small and mid-sizeAs a fixed-fee, managed services ITconsultant, HTS must constantly seek ways business IT expertise across Middle America. Like the farm landof streamlining its business operationswhile maintaining quality service. and businesses surrounding its operations, HTS‟s passion is focused on growth, productivity and quality. As a Microsoft®SolutionWindows 7 features such as Problem Steps Certified Gold Partner and Small Business Specialist, HTS has beenRecorder, Location Aware Printing and newdesktop navigation tools speed up invited to be part of an exclusive pre-launch Windows® 7workflow for HTS engineers. Professional program called Ignite. It means both HTS and some ofBenefits its customers will test-drive the new operating system under actual Faster Problem Identification Faster Printer Connections business conditions. HTS is discovering features with Windows 7 Faster, More Pinpointed Searches that are speeding up its business and making everyday tasks Faster Customer Tutorials Faster Work Resumption easier, while safeguarding business operations.
SituationFounded in 1985, Heartland Technology HTS technicians move from one network toSolutions (HTS) has always focused on the another.technology needs of medium and smallbusiness customers in the market areas it Taskbar Customizationserves. Core competencies include network Jump Lists allow HTS users to see the mostinfrastructure, security, document imaging, recently used files by right-clicking on thetelephony, surveillance, global positioning Taskbar.systems, disaster recovery services andbusiness consulting. HTS has eight offices Hibernate, Sleepwith 81 employees in five states, giving the In most instances, Windows 7 starts up,company a strong Midwest footprint. shuts down, resumes from standby and responds faster than previous operatingThe ongoing challenges faced by HTS center systems. For HTS users, this meansaround maintaining its quality of service while technicians can quickly get back to work ashaving that service delivered as efficiently as they move from one client or project topossible. another.“As consultants we‟re always trying to do Federated Searchthings better and faster,” said Arlin Sorensen, This feature deepens search capabilities,chief executive officer, Heartland Technology essentially making Windows 7 a giant searchSolutions. “And we often lean on technology engine that scours local PCs, HomeGroup,to help us accelerate our business and be network, external drives and the Internet. Inmore efficient.” addition, users can type questions or phrases in the Instant Start Search box because the control panel, tasks and command-level canSolution now be searched.HTS has found several features withinWindows 7 that will accelerate its own Internet Explorer 8business and make its customers‟ Features within IE8 such as Searchbusinesses more productive and secure. Suggestions, Accelerators and Slices speed up the search process by making keySnap, Shake, Peek word/phrase suggestions, provide ancillaryHTS engineers can navigate through services like maps using Accelerator, anddocuments and projects more efficiently, track changes on favorite web sites withsaving valuable time while managing costs. Slices.Network Connection Wizard Problem Steps RecorderHTS users have an easier, faster desktop This feature captures a detailed screen-by-connection to wireless, VPN and LAN screen view with keystroke information.networks. It means HTS engineers can more Problems can be more clearly communicatedquickly identify all network connection to HTS staff. It is also a powerful tutorialoptions within a single window. creation tool, enabling the consultant to develop How-To instructions for clients toLocation Aware Printing address chronic IT issues.Location Aware Printing automaticallyrecognizes each new default printer as
Power Management “If I guessed how much faster Windows 7 isHTS laptop batteries can last longer with to boot and get me solving problems, I‟d saypower-saving features like Battery Power 30 percent,” said Humemuller. “As anManagement. engineer, I get sensitized to waiting and quickly notice improvements in speed.”Advanced BackupAdvanced Backup easily backs up any file, Mini-Productivity Toolsincluding all local files, or an entire business “Features like Peek, Shake, Snap and un-network. pinning Gadgets are micro-productivity tools,” said Humemuller. “Even these tinyAction Center improvements in the time it takes to get aAction Center consolidates alerts from 10 project done make us more efficient.”Windows features that deal with security andmaintenance. Faster, More Pinpointed Searches “Federated Search speeds up our work. It‟s fast becoming the place to start everything,”Benefits said Hicks. “I can find applications, emails,Faster Problem Identification control panel settings and documents“Since managed services means we deliver IT anywhere on my hard drive, network andsupport for a fixed monthly fee, we must Internet. For example, I plugged in a secondsolve our customer‟s computer problems monitor and got stuck connecting it up.fast,” said Hicks. “Problem Steps Recorder Entering „monitor‟ in the Search box, I got aprecisely captures the problem for quick dual monitor option. With two mouse clicks Iresolution.” had two monitors working.Speed Features “I use Web Slices in IE8 to monitor eBay“In our estimation, a leaner, faster Windows 7 purchases of the headset and desktopwith enhanced navigation and productivity scanner gear we need for Heartland,” saidfeatures like Jump Lists, Pinning, faster Hicks. “It keeps me tuned in to the bids andstartup, Location Aware Printing and Problem deadlines in a simple, unobtrusive way.Steps Recorder is saving us up to one halfhour a day per engineer-recouping. This is as “Live Search Suggestions is another IE8much as 20 hours a month,” noted Hicks. feature that makes for more efficient searches. It starts to recommend the most“Network Connection Wizard allows me to common search terms or phrases,see all of the available networks in one view,” sometimes sparking better and morenoted Chet Humemuller, senior engineer, pinpointed search criteria,” said Hicks.Heartland Technology Solutions. “It reallyspeeds up and simplifies the seven to eight Faster Printer Connectionstimes a day I have to connect. “Location-Aware Printing means our CEO doesn‟t print out a balance sheet in our“ReadyBoost allowed me to use Windows 7 Oklahoma office when he‟s sitting in the Iowaon an older machine at home that only had office,” said Hicks. “Windows 7 „knows‟ what512K of RAM,” commented Humemuller. “I network is being accessed and automaticallyplugged in a 4 GB USB stick, and it worked selects the local default printer. No moreperfectly. waiting and wondering.”
For More Information Resume Work Faster “Restore Previous Version adds an extra layerFor more information about Microsoft “Windows 7 is just plain faster,” noted Chet of document security to our business,” saidproducts and services, call the Microsoft Hunemuller, senior engineer, Heartland Hicks. “If a document is accidentally deletedSales Information Center at (800) 426- Technology. “From Sleep to full boot is a few or lost, we know we can usually get it back.9400. In Canada, call the Microsoft seconds. I‟m up and being productive quicklyCanada Information Centre at (877) 568- no matter how many times I jump on and off “Action Center is aptly named. All Windows 72495. Customers who are deaf or hard-of- my computer.” users have a single place to go to find out thehearing can reach Microsoft text telephone security and maintenance status of our(TTY/TDD) services at (800) 892-5234 in Faster Customer Tutorials computers. Hunting for the right window isthe United States or (905) 568-9641 in “Problem Steps Recorder is also a great gone.Canada. Outside the 50 United States and training aid as we can create a tutorial inCanada, please contact your local minutes rather than struggling to “We estimate the vast majority of our XPMicrosoft subsidiary. To access information communicate solutions over the phone or in customers will migrate to Windows 7 quickly,”using the World Wide Web, go to: email,” said Hicks. said Sorensen. “Many have already upgradedwww.microsoft.com hardware and compatibility issues have User Security Level Options largely been resolved. The timing for adoptionFor more information about Heartland “Some of our clients had such an allergic is perfect.”Technology Solutions products and reaction to the User Account Controlservices, call 712-744-3619 or visit the interruptions in Windows Vista that they Windows 7Web site at: downgraded to Windows XP,” said Hicks. “The Faster and more reliable: Windows 7 will helpwww.heartlandtechnologies.com ability to adjust the level of User Security your organization use information technology Level Options in Windows 7 is a great selling to gain a competitive advantage in today‟s point.” new world of work. Your people will be able to be more productive anyway. You will be able Enhanced Security for Customers to support your mobile work force with better “Though Heartland‟s network security is access to shared data and collaboration buttoned-down, that‟s not always the case tools. And your IT staff will have better tools with our customers such as schools, adoption and technologies to enhance corporate IT agencies and non-profits,” said Hicks. security, data protection, and more efficient “Windows 7 is going to benefit them right out deployment and management. of the box with built-in features like Advanced Backup, Restore Previous Version and Action For more information about Windows 7, go to: Center.” www.microsoft.com/windows/business Software and Services Hardware Products Lenovo − Microsoft Windows 7 Professional HP − Microsoft Windows Vista Professional − Microsoft Office 2007 Professional − Windows Small BuThis case study is for informational purposes only. MICROSOFTMAKES NO WARRANTIES, EXPRESS OR IMPLIED, IN THISSUMMARY.Document published May 2009