Surrey School District
Surrey School District uses Absolute to Automate Processes, Saving the IT Department Time and Mone
Surrey School District required an endpoint security solution for its fleet of 6,000 PCs, 6,000 Apple desktop computers, and 800 notebook computers. The largest school district in British Columbia, Surrey SD welcomes 65,000 students each day at its 99 elementary schools, 18 secondary schools, and six learning centers.
Dan Turner, Director of Information Technology at Surrey School District, was looking for a more efficient method to perform lifecycle management and execute the District’s annual ‘true up,’ which is essentially an inventory count of CPU levels, base bar and licensing. “With over 100 schools in the District, the true up was an annual headache for my team of 55 in IT services.” Rob Gill, Systems Application Specialist at Surrey School District, remembers first-hand the true up process of the past: “Before, 10 to 15 of my colleagues would spend a month and a half—from mid-May to late-June—visiting each and every school in the district looking at all the computers to get inventory counts of hardware configurations and installed software titles.
Surrey School District wanted to find an endpoint security solution that fully supported Apple’s Mac OS X. Simultaneously, it wanted to replace the manual process of physically touching every computer to perform inventory checks with an automated method. Finally, as a means to ensure software license compliance and avoid regulatory penalties, Surrey School District was looking for an endpoint security solution to perform regular and accurate checks of every device.
“With Absolute,” Turner explains, “the manual true up has become a thing of the past. Each day a computer is booted up, Absolute sends any changes to the hardware and software data points. We find out exactly what each computer is running, how much hard drive space is available, whether memory cards are missing, and more. It’s a critical tool for lifecycle management, because now if we want to know if a piece of hardware can support more powerful software, we don’t have to visit the school and sit down at the computer to find out; we know automatically, every day.” Now that Absolute has completely automated the true up process, Gill and his co-workers can dedicate more time to student and teacher issues, rather than administrative.
Another benefit is helping the District stay onside with software compliance issues. At Surrey Schools, the majority of software licenses are purchased by the District, but some belong to individual schools.
“Absolute has been a great investment for our School District and saves us money in many ways: it helps keep us onside with software compliance regulations, thus preventing us from having to pay fines, and it has enabled us to automate processes that were labor-intensive and inefficient. I would strongly recommend Absolute to any school district,” says Turner.