Collaboration is a necessary and critical component of Tamarack’s workflow processes, yet the company has struggled to find a way to collaborate easily. Operating two separate locations in Sandpoint, Idaho, as well as having almost a fifth of its employees on the road at any given time, means Tamarack employees are rarely in the same room. Everyone brings their own device, which means some employees are on iOS devices and some are on Android — so they don’t all have the same applications to collaborate on.
Additionally, the company wasn’t using the cloud to allow employees to access their work environment from abroad. Instead, they had a typical client server environment with backend file servers, which limited their mobility from an infrastructure standpoint. For example, if employees were traveling and had an issue with their laptop or device, they would have to wait until they returned to have the issue resolved because the IT manager needed physical access to the device.
“They had a disconnected work environment,” says Chris Ploessel, president of RedNight, the IT consulting firm that helped Tamarack integrate its mobile cloud-based solution. “They thought they were in the cloud with Microsoft OneDrive, but what we found is that there were many files on individual workstations that weren’t on OneDrive and many files that weren’t being properly backed up.”
Another pain point was having to drag around laptops on every trip to gain access to the company’s network. “I’ve been packing around a computer to access our mainframe when I’m away,” said Guida. He knew there must be a better, easier and more productive way to work.
Even getting small tasks done, like signing off on a work order while traveling, could be challenging and create delays. Having previously worked on a Samsung Galaxy Note5 device, Guida wanted his team to experience the added productivity they could get by having a device with an S Pen — such as the Galaxy Note8 — which could make these sorts of tasks easier. He also wanted to bring over some of his key employees that were on iOS devices to the Android environment. “I wanted our folks to know what it’s like to use a mini computer on a mobile device,” said Guida.