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Management Strategies

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Standard Chartered Installs Desktop Support System

Standard Chartered Bank installs a desktop support system to manage the 31,500 servers, desktops and laptops it has scattered around the world.

London-based Standard Chartered Bank has installed a desktop support system to manage the 31,500 servers, desktops and laptops it has scattered around the world. Radia, an enterprise solution from Novadigm, Mahwah, N.J., will allow Standard to automate the management of its digital assets worldwide.

The bank runs a hybrid of Unix and Windows operating systems, linked by a range of networks from broadband fiber optics in urban locales to telephone lines in remote villages.

In order to operate effectively as a single institution, employees must have exactly the right software to do their jobs, when and where they need it, said Lee Allanson, senior project manager at Standard Chartered. "Due to diversity in our IT environment and rapid change in our business, we needed a solution that could ensure high reliability of software amidst such complexity and scale."

Novadigm's Radia met all of the bank's criteria. The product is a modular plug and play software suite that allows IT professionals to automate and manage servers, desktop and laptop computers, PDA devices and ATM machines, explained George Kellar, vice president of marketing at Novadigm.

About 30 to 40 banks have deployed Novadigm solutions. One of the leading uses is to allow marketing and promotion departments to automatically modify ATM advertising.

Radia detects the presence of new devices on the network and brings them under "automatic, adaptive management," Kellar said. The system is self-managing, so that when a company changes user preferences, hardware or software, Radia automatically adapts and reprovisions the devices under its management with the correct application versions and configurations.

Patches can be applied quickly to thousands of devices, and applications can be easily installed, updated or removed in response to changes in entitlement policy, personnel, and business roles.

Thus, Radia speeds transitions to new IT platforms, and allows IT personnel to better manage software across multiple platforms.

The product's flexibility was a key attraction for Standard Chartered, said Kellar. "It makes it possible for banks to better utilize people and implement operational effectiveness through a single strategy."

Financial institutions, he added, "are focused on extraordinarily high reliability and availability and can't afford a loss of productivity." Radia, he says, boasts close to 100 percent reliability, and by eliminating the need for help desks, it further reduces IT support costs.

Pricing is variable, depending on the configuration of the customer and size of the implementation. Kellar declined to say what Standard Chartered paid, but company marketing materials indicate a price of between $75 and $150 per client deployed, suggesting it was well into the seven figures. Neither Standard nor Novadigm would comment about the timing of the rollout.

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