Copeland Borough Council
Copeland Borough Council is the governing council responsible for the western Cumbria borough of Copeland.
As councillors’ demanded greater flexibility in their choice of devices, it became clear that the Council’s aging VPN infrastructure was holding it back. With the help of Phoenix Software, Copeland Borough Council was able to deploy Office 365 to meet the demands of its users, while also providing the foundation for significant innovations in the future.
As has become commonplace in organisations across the private and public sector, users increasingly want – and expect – to use the very latest technologies at work. Whereas barely a decade ago users would have been content with the device they were given by IT – because that was the only device approved and configured to work on the network – today they want to use the same devices at work that they use at home, and they don’t want to be limited to one device. They want the iPad experience, but they want IT to support and manage it.
For Copeland Borough Council, this was a demand he was facing every day, when the borough’s 52 elected Councillors would ask for greater flexibility in the devices they could use so they could be more productive and work more easily from different locations.
The Council wanted to provide its Councillors with the flexibility they wanted, but it’s existing VPN-based IT infrastructure rendered such demands impossible to meet. Each of the Councillors were already provided with a laptop with a Juniper SSL-VPN client. While this enabled them to work remotely if they wished, they were limited to using the one device provided by IT, and any change or new device needed significant work from IT before it could be used. This was a far cry from the iPad style experience they craved.
At the same time, the Council’s IT Team was facing pressures of its own, least of all a shrinking IT budget in the age of austerity. The small team also spent most of its time just managing the existing IT infrastructure. How could they find the time or the budget to provide the flexibility his users were demanding? They needed a solution that not only freed their users to use the devices they wanted to, but did so without increasing the burden of management on the team or costing an arm and a leg. And last but not least, the new solution had to be compliant with all of the regulations that UK Council’s must abide by, such as IL2 classification for personal data protection and PSN classification.