Desktop Virtualization Cuts Costs and Improves Social Services

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Gary Bateman, CIO of Iowa Workforce Development, was able to turn a budget desktop virtualization project into a hugely successful expansion of state services for the unemployed--and he lowered operating costs to boot.

When 2011 budget cuts forced the state of Iowa to close 36 of 55 employment offices, government officials looked for ways to keep providing services to residents, 90,000 of whom were out of work.

Using desktop virtualization tools, the state equipped schools, libraries and other public buildings with secured online applications for residents to get help with filing for unemployment, writing resumes, searching for jobs, and accessing state programs. The project has been so successful that a year later, Iowa provides more services in more places than ever before--for less than it used to spend.

"We were reacting to necessity at first. But we're able to keep services and still save money," says Gary Bateman, CIO of Iowa Workforce Development, a state agency that oversees employment services. "We feel pretty good about that."

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