Your organization may have already integrated Macintosh computers into your environment or you are ready to start. You want to maximize the benefits of easy of use, longer lifecycle management, improved security, and the unique ability to run Windows and Macintosh software on a single computer.
Like any technology used in corporate America, it takes a disciplined approach requiring strategy, education, testing, and deployment planning to make the most of your investment.
Here are some items to consider:
Planning For Mac Integration
Whether you are adding more Macintosh computers to your environment or just starting out, answering these questions during planning will help you better achieve the goals of your technology plans.
- What company resources will users need to access?
- How will training for end users and technical staff be implemented?
- How will end users receive technical support? What departments will be rolled out first?
- Do we need outside Macintosh IT assistance?
While this is by no means a definitive list, questions such as these will provide a framework to assist in the planning phase.
As the number of Macintosh computers increase within your organization, there will be a need for IT staff to better understand the Apple ecosystem. Like most vendors, Apple offers certifications and training that could assist your IT staff. These programs cover support and troubleshooting of Macintosh computers, integration and management of Macintosh into Windows environments, and Macintosh repair options. Certifications like Apple Certified Support Professional and Apple Certified Mac Technician provide training that will build on your IT staffs abilities.
Testing New Mac Integration
Planning is a key tenant, but testing is where the rubber meets the road. A ‘test run’ provides valuable input for evaluating critical systems and resources within your existing corporate environment. The idea is to resolve any challenges such as access to resources, security, and user input before rolling-out to entire departments or teams.
Now that your pilot deployment and been completed and you have addressed any outstanding challenges, it is time to deploy you Macs to the organization.
- Do you have extra staff available for the initial deployment?
- Is your help desk ready for handling an increase in tickets during the deployment?
- How will you handle the transfer of user data?
- How long will it take to complete each team or department?
- What resource can you make available to end users for support, like Apple support documents?
Your IT team is the frontline for deploying Macs across your organization. Providing your team resources from educational training to outside IT assistance, will provide the steps necessary for a smooth introduction to Macintosh in your company.
If you do believe you need outside assistance, what types of questions should you ask to evaluate vendors and choose the right Mac integration consultant? Check out this post for a list of questions.