Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs (Defra)

Case Study

Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs

Case Study

“We’re very pleased with boxxe’s mobile device management service. To date, the system has fulfilled all of our expectations, and boxxe has proved to be a responsive and supportive service provider. They are quick to adapt to new requirements and have delivered all projects on time and within all agreed performance parameters.” Graham Wells, Cloud Service Manager, Defra

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The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs is the government department responsible for environmental protection, food production and standards, agriculture, fisheries and rural communities in the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland.

The Challenge

The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) required a technology provider to manage its vast fleet of mobile devices. Defra wanted a cloud-based solution, with no hardware housed in its own premises. At full capacity, the service would need to manage up to 35,000 mobile devices used by Defra, Environment Agency (EA) and Rural Payments Agency (RPA) employees.

Each of these agencies had its own data centre and first-level helpdesk, provided by their respective system integrators, and the new mobility management service would need to integrate with all of these.

The Solution

boxxe proposed VMware Workspace ONE as the preferred Mobile Device Management Management (MDM) solution. The rich functionality provided precisely matched the needs and aspirations of Defra and its stakeholders. VMware Workspace ONE simplified the management and monitoring of large numbers of mobile devices, whilst ensuring the security of those devices and the data accessed and stored.

VMware Workspace ONE enabled all Defra mobile devices, of any type, to be managed from a central console. This included enrolling new devices, managing all apps used by field personnel through secure access to central servers at Defra, managing email access and encryption, and allowing content sharing and collaboration across devices.

It also enabled both boxxe and Defra to access a vast array of reports and information, which could be collated and presented to help monitor service performance and keep track of user activities and requirements.

The Delivery

Our technical consultants began designing and building the infrastructure for the hosted service, integrating it with existing service providers through a central network hub, with Defra’s recently implemented Identity Management System (IDM).

boxxe built a highly available and resilient, active-active architecture, hosting the service across two geographically dispersed data centres. This allowed the load to be shared between the two sites and, and meant that all services could be switched to one data centre in the event of a fault, to the other. This gave Defra assurances about the continuity of its mobility management service. boxxe carried out full penetration and security testing before the system was launched.

boxxe proactively monitors all connections to ensure the availability of the overall network and to respond to any events or loss of connectivity, either at the hub or any of the connected data centres. The service provided by boxxe includes 24-hour second and third-line service desks, which interact with and support the three existing first-line helpdesks.

boxxe runs the second-line service desk, which manages device enrolments, device support, request fulfilment and fault identification. The third-line desk is managed by VMware Workspace ONE, responsible for solving any related issues.

boxxe also developed detailed enrolment guides, and provided training for existing first-line helpdesk operators. The company provides ongoing support to the user enrolment teams, as well as 24-hour major incident management.

The Results

During the project initiation phase, boxxe established clear metrics with the project stakeholders from all parties to ensure that assessment processes were in place. These metrics are reviewed on a regular basis to ensure the service continues to meet Defra's changing requirements.

In the first four weeks, following the launch of VMware Workspace ONE, boxxe needed to migrate 1,800 devices onto the system before an existing Blackberry hosted environment expired, achieving all enrolments on schedule.

In the first five months of the project, boxxe registered 6,000 devices onto VMware Workspace ONE and enrolled 5,000 active users. Enrolments continue at a rate of approximately 250 per week. boxxe also handles up to 800 access requests monthly through its service desk.

Availability has been maintained at more than 99% since the service was launched, and boxxe has answered 99% of calls to its service desk within the time agreed in its SLA.

Project Numbers:

32,000 devices registered to VMware Workspace ONE

active users

25 new weekly enrolments 

800 monthly access requests handled by boxxe service desk

99% availability across the board since launch

Why choose boxxe?

Expertise and experience in deploying and managing VMware Workspace ONE on a large scale

As an SME, boxxe is flexible and responsive to changing requirements 

All elements of the VMware Workspace ONE system can be hosted by boxxe in secure data centres – keeping all hardware out of Defra premises

boxxe offers a cost-effective solution, with capabilities to react quickly to events and requests

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To learn more on how boxxe can help with your mobile device management requirements, please get in touch.
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