A strong team in the crisis

IT makes home office possible for everyone within a few days

Deploying a software within a few days and using it productively is impossible? No, the IT teams at Corporate have proven this agility. In the middle of March, a group consisting of the Global Network Project team, the Global Network Services teams in Gdansk and Essen, Software Distribution, the User Help Desk, the Global Control Center and CO/GPI managed to do this within a very short time. Several thousand employees were technically enabled to work smoothly in their home offices.

The previous remote access solution was not designed for such large volumes of simultaneous access. "The rollout of the new solution was already planned. But by then a lot of things had become obsolete," says Sverrir Jonsson (Enterprise Architect at Corporate GPI), who has been preparing this technology for all Business Areas for months in close cooperation with Ralf Golfels, Head of IT Operations at Materials Services.

To avoid network bottlenecks, the IT service quickly distributed the new software "Zscaler" to the end devices, coordinated with the User Help Desk and the Global Control Center, as well as prepared and sent out the manuals. Employees were then able to install the new software independently and then use it. The new software is now being used by more than 8000 employees across the Group. The first few days were very challenging. In daily status meetings, the teams collated all problem cases, agreed on solutions, made adjustments and compensated for the high ticket volume by working overtime and increasing the night shift in the User Help Desk. In the first ten days alone, the ticket volume reached approximately the value of an entire month. "That was a pretty exhausting and intensive time. All units worked together extremely well and reliably. Everyone pulled together – even across hierarchical levels," says Karsten Jarzyna, Corporate GPI employee. Sverrir Jonsson adds: "The fact that we were able to react quickly to the new challenges is thanks to a strong team and a good, uncomplicated and pragmatic approach".

Now it is done. All employees have been able to work from home for more than two months. The IT teams have found a way to defy the restrictions imposed by the Corona crisis and to support the employees in their daily work on an ad hoc basis with the available resources.

"A good outlook for the future - technically and also for the way the new information management unit works," Ralf Sonnberger is delighted.

If you want to learn more about the Zscaler solution, go to globalnetwork.thyssenkrupp.com.