2011 Winner Profile

H&R Block

Project Description:
Every year between December 1 and April 15, tax service provider H&R Block's headcount jumps from 7,000 employees to more than 100,000. The influx of temporary workers puts a severe strain on the company's business processes, including the deployment of software and updates. The company decided to make provisioning easier by moving to a virtualized desktop infrastructure, piloting thin-client desktops from Wyse Technology in December 2009. After what H&R Block says was a flawless demonstration, the company rolled out Wyse WSM and Cloud PC to 1,000 offices and 12,000 seats by April 2011, with plans to at least quadruple the number of seats deployed before the 2012 tax season. Instead of purchasing PCs every three years at a cost of more than $15 million annually the company plans to purchase thin-client computers every 7 years. Moreover, a thin-client system does not need to be manually set up by an IT technician; the employee can plug it in and it will be remotely configured. Finally, the central administration of tax data enhances its security.
Project type:
Enterprise architecture, Security, Desktop PC virtualization
Business Functions:
Asset management/maintenance, IT operations
Business Goal:
Rich Agar, CIO
William C. Cobb, President, CEO & Director
Kansas City, Mo.
Financial Services
Revenue (2010):
$3.9 billion
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