Mecklenburg County deploys Office 365, Windows Azure and Surface Pro

Rebecca Gibson
Rebecca Gibson
By Rebecca Gibson on 20 March 2014
Mecklenburg County deploys Office 365, Windows Azure and Surface Pro

Mecklenburg County, located in North Carolina, US, has deployed Microsoft Office 365, the Microsoft Windows Azure cloud platform and Microsoft Surface Pro to increase employee productivity, improve efficiency and reduce costs.

Since implementing Office 365, Windows Azure and Surface Pro, various departments have reported a range of operational benefits, including the ability to securely use the Office platform on up to five devices and reduced costs.

For instance, Mecklenburg’s youth and family services department, which participated in the county’s Office 365 and Surface Pro pilot launch, has achieved US$3.2 million in productivity savings per year.

“With the mobility factor of Surface Pro and Office 365, we are able to do so much more,” said Cliff DuPuy, technical services director at Mecklenburg County. “Not only does our youth and family services department love the devices for the flexibility and productivity the combination provides, but the team appreciates the toughness of the devices, the touch aspects and the ability to document benefits while visiting clients. We are working toward ensuring that all our employees have their own device, and it really has helped to increase their enthusiasm around how they do their jobs.”

Other departments within the county have also implemented Office 365 and Surface devices to improve productivity and reduce operating costs. For example, the county’s food services department has used Surface Pros and Office 365 to ensure food and restaurant inspectors can use state apps, while its medical examiners can now use Surface Pros to take notes.

Mecklenburg County’s parks and recreation employees – all of whom are moving to Surface 2 devices – use the Microsoft solutions to collect payments, book venues and access the county’s financial system. To cater for the increased demand for mobile devices, the county aims to have deployed more than 1,000 Surface Pro devices by 1 August 2014.

In addition, the Microsoft Windows Azure cloud platform has improved the county’s disaster recovery capabilities and enabled it to take significant workloads out of its local data centres. This has reduced storage costs from US$21 per GB to around 30 cents per GB.

“Mecklenburg County is leading the way in harnessing the power of the cloud and new mobile device form factors to deliver better government services to citizens, while at the same time lowering costs,” said Michael Donlan, vice president of Microsoft’s state and local government business. “Mecklenburg is using Office 365, Windows Azure and Surface to transform the business of government, all within a solution that best meets its requirements for security and privacy.”

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