Established in 1965 and headquartered in Ireland, Kingspan Group PLC is a global leader in high-performance insulation and building envelope solutions. Trading in over 70 countries with over 100 factories, Kingspan employs over 13,000 people across its 5 divisions, Insulated Panels, Insulation Boards, Light & Air, Water & Energy, and Data & Flooring Technology.
What Kingspan’s requirements were
Kingspan Group PLC has grown through acquisition and a recurrent challenge for them has been at the point of onboarding newly acquired companies. There is frequently a disparity of IT which they must assimilate, particularly in the EUC space. The differing architectures between companies mean it is difficult for Kingspan to seamlessly onboard them into the wider network, resulting in extended periods of operational delays.
Kingspan Panels, a division of Kingspan PLC, required a solution that could alleviate the need to manage multiple architectures. The solution would be efficient and capable of managing this process in one, unified step, from the date of onboarding their new acquisition. Kingspan’s main requirement was to ensure also that its worldwide users had access to the business intelligence software, SAP. This included new users of the company acquired in Australia.
What HTG delivered
With Kingspan having decided they did not want to invest massive amounts of money in new infrastructure, the solution proposed was Windows Virtual Desktop (WVD).
WVD is a comprehensive desktop and application virtualisation service running on the cloud, in this instance Azure. Encompassing built-in security and compliance, it enables enterprises to rapidly deploy and scale Windows desktops and applications at any location, globally. Enterprises using WVD can not only give their employees access to those virtualised applications and remote desktops, but have the benefit of and ability to, provide multi-session, Windows 10 experiences.
HTG’s expertise in delivering successful WVD deployments means it now has users of the VDI solution in the UK, Dubai, and Australia. HTG was therefore well placed to deliver Kingspan’s requirement through WVD.
Microsoft subsequently engaged HTG to assist Kingspan Panels in deploying a WVD Proof of Concept (POC) environment in Azure. As a Microsoft Gold partner, HTG’s engagement with Kingspan arose through Microsoft’s WVD Lighthouse Program – an exclusive, early adopter initiative set up to enable large enterprises onboard quickly and more easily to new technologies, in this instance WVD. Effectively, through Microsoft’s funding, this initiative helps HTG to help its customers and prospects on their journey to deploying a WVD environment.
It was envisaged that WVD could improve technical, operational, and organisational efficiencies in the assimilation, onboarding, and aligning of the acquired company’s IT to Kingspan’s standards and strategies. The process would in effect be a case of either creating all the new user accounts and installing the WVD client on their devices or provide Kingspan with IGEL devices to act as thin clients to repurpose their existing kit, scale the WVD solution as necessary, and then give users access.
With Kingspan very reliant on conference calls, HTG implemented the WVD optimised version of Teams to help them continue to collaborate remotely and securely.
For the acquired Australian company to access SAP, HTG span up 4 WVD instances for its 40 users which could be securely accessed over the open internet. Their managers and field staff, who used Apple devices and BYOD, were able to gain secure access as well, and when the Coronavirus pandemic ensued, WVD was rapidly deployed for many more of its users.
Finally, to enable the WVD deployment to be extremely scalable and cost-effective, HTG ensured FSLogix Profiles hosted on Azure Files, were implemented. With Kingspan having a very mature presence in Azure, this would help them take what they have deployed in the PoC environment and roll it out globally.
Commenting on HTG’s involvement, Graham Wight, CEO at HTG said: “We are delighted to have been associated with Kingspan Group PLC in helping them move to a modern workspace incorporating Windows Virtual Desktop. This is a testament to the credibility and professionalism of HTG as a leading IT consultancy and is another addition to our list of global deployments of WVD.”
Dean Lawrence, HTG’s Principal Consultant continued, “It’s been really satisfying for HTG to work with Kingspan Group PLC in deploying a live Windows Virtual Desktop production environment. As mentioned by Graham, it’s pleasing to add them to our growing list of WVD customers.”
Interested in Windows Virtual Desktop for your organisation?
As a leading global IT solutions consultancy and Microsoft Gold partner providing disruptive digital technologies and best in class products, HTG has the capability to become your trusted advisor. If you would like to reduce overheads, maximise user efficiency, be compliant and secure, please contact us. For further information on WVD visit www.getwvd.co.uk