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Communications for SMEs


November 1, 2010
by Deana Rosolen

For many small to medium size enterprises (SMEs), simplifying technology environments is often the last thing to receive attention and resources. Across Canada, SMEs focus on stretching their IT dollars as much as possible.

That often means they lack a dedicated IT person, or they have one who ends up functioning as more of a generalist (putting out basic IT fires) than a specialist (who can design and implement IT solutions).

At an event in June, HP launched a suite of new solutions to help give SMEs access to the same IT capabilities that large enterprises have at their fingertips. The aim is to help SMEs manage, protect and grow their businesses.

Communication

When it comes to communication, HP’s latest offerings are centred on helping smaller companies capitalize on mobile devices and the flexibility of interactive online work environments.

One new option is the HP and Microsoft Unified Communication & Collaboration solution, which combines servers, storage, networking and software to streamline operations across messaging, video and voice applications.

HP also offers virtual rooms, software that enables SMEs to cost-effectively connect employees, partners and clients in one virtual online location. There’s also HP 48Upper, which can enable IT professionals to manage everything from project planning and operations to service management across all the processes that make up IT.

Infrastructure

For SMEs looking to create an innovative environment that speeds innovation to market at a reduced cost, HP has developed solutions that advance the convergence of servers, storage, networking and management.

Those include the HP V1410 Switch. With eight-, 16- and 24-port gigabit options, it can deliver plug-and-play connectivity among client PCs, servers and storage devices.

There’s also the HP StorageWorks X310 Data Vault, which offers local and remote file access for up to 10 PC clients in addition to Macs. The HP StorageWorks X1000 Network Storage System can improve storage capacity by providing up to twice the drives of previous generations in half the space.

And the HP StorageWorks P2000 G3 SAS Modular Array (MSA) features the latest 6Gb Serial Attached SCSI (SAS) technology to provide shared storage consolidation without the additional networking cost or expertise traditionally required to run a storage area network (SAN).

Internal operations and productivity

To help SMEs focus on their priorities—retaining customers and improving employee productivity—HP also offers HP PC Helpdesk and Windows 7 Onsite Upgrade Service. HP says the service can simplify operations with onsite, remote technical installation support and operating system migration.

There’s also HP Insight Remote Support software that can reduce risk by discovering potential issues during software installation or operation.

The HP Business Support Center Forums can improve communication and collaboration among business professionals through an enhanced one-stop online support experience.

There’s the HP Proactive Select Services, which can reduce the risk of infrastructure downtime with expert resources available on demand at variable prices.

And there’s the HP Sustainability Reporting: An Essential Marketing Tool, which allows SMEs to communicate their environmental practices, sustainability efforts and results to stakeholders and clients.

The suite of products was announced at an event in Toronto on June 2.