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    Preparation for Last-Minute Windows 10 Migration-Procurement 

    On January 14, 2020, standard support for Windows 7 will end. Since many companies have already done so, demand for migration is declining, but there are still some companies seeking help just ahead of the end of the support. As such, project leaders of IT teams may be in a haste searching the right consultant and project management specialist after they perform the initial planning. In this column, we will discuss some things you should be aware of in terms of procurement, OS configuration and deployment doing business in multiple languages and with multiple countries.


    Procurement for Global Companies
    There are two options to accomplish OS migration; upgrading the OS on the existing PCs or procuring new PCs on which Windows 10 is already installed. If you choose to procure new PCs, there are two additional options: purchase the new PCs or lease them. The price and time to deliver will differ depending on which you choose. It might seem that by just signing the quotation, procurement will go smoothly and the new PCs will arrive to your office within a month or so, but there are times when this is not the case.


    We have had a case where the headquarters of a multinational company made a global procurement contract with a PC manufacturer, but the contract details were not shared with the Japan office. After our Tokyo team requested a quotation from one of our distributors, we found that there was already a global procurement contract between their overseas headquarters and another PC manufacturer. In this case, they should have contacted their headquarters to confirm the details of the global procurement contract and learn where they should place their order: on their own or through the head office. If ordering must be done via headquarters, you can expect the time to deliver to increase dramatically. It is important to keep this in mind, especially because in recent years, the number of M&As between Japanese SMEs and foreign companies has been increasing.


    Another example is a client for whom we were providing technical support. They needed to procure 100 laptops with English keyboards. Their procurement desk was at their headquarters overseas which had full authority to arrange orders and did not allow local partners to support procurement. The headquarters however misplaced the order and 100 laptops with Japanese keyboards were delivered instead of ones with English ones. It was already too late, and the laptops were impossible to return. As a workaround, they tried to replace the individual keys on some of the laptops, but they ended up putting most of them in storage. As a result, they had to reorder the laptops with English keyboards through the headquarters, taking even more time.

    Delays do not happen only due to miscommunication and human error. Some PC orders require more about 3 months to deliver. One of the reasons for this is insufficient supply of Intel CPUs, a situation which has been ongoing. Also, in some cases, distribution may suddenly stop due to natural disasters and political turmoil. In 2011, Thailand, which accounted for about 60% of the world’s hard disk production, was hit by a devastating typhoon and the production line was shut down, severely affecting the global supply of HDDs. Additionally, last year while working on a project in China, we experienced an unexpected delay in hardware delivery due to the impact of the US-China trade war. Luckily, the project timeline was not too heavily affected.

    As you can see, there might be unforeseen delays in the procurement process due to many reasons beyond our control, so it is essential to make a plan with sufficient room for adjustment.

    In our next article, we will discuss things such as OS editions and language-related settings.


    Please contact us for more details.

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