Microsoft claims Windows XP Professional can save billions

Redmond, WA—'We're so convinced of the value of Windows XP Professional to enterprise customers that we'll prove it at our cost,' said Microsoft's vp of Windows client group, Rogers Weed, to Control Engineering editors on Oct. 9, 2002.


Redmond, WA— We're so convinced of the value of Windows XP Professional to enterprise customers that we'll prove it at our cost,' said Microsoft 's vp of Windows client group, Rogers Weed, to Control Engineering editors on Oct. 9, 2002. 'We will underwrite the business case study of the first 40 enterprise customers with 5,000 or more PCs to show whether Windows XP Professional will save them real dollars. We estimate that the cost of the study is around $25,000, so the investment we're making in this initiative is around $1 million.'

The company announced the results of recent studies that show how, cumulatively, enterprise customers may realize savings of billions of dollars by replacing their old Windows 95, Windows 98, and Windows NT 4.0 Workstation desktops with the Microsoft Windows XP Professional operating system at the Gartner Symposium/ITxpo

'As I talk with IT managers, I'm hearing that they must justify their technology investments more than ever before,' said Steve Ballmer, ceo of Microsoft, at the symposium. 'With budgets tight, enterprises need to be confident of real returns before they invest in IT. Companies still on the Windows 95 or Windows 98 platforms are missing out on the incredible benefits that come with the combination of Windows XP and Office XP. Together they deliver more business value to our customers than any other solution available. And we'll prove it!'

The company cites improved security and reliability technologies; better deployment and management tools; and mobility and productivity-enhancing features in Windows XP Professional for the cost savings potential for enterprises. Data from recent Microsoft business-value studies reviewed by BearingPoint Inc., formerly KPMG Consulting, demonstrated Windows XP Professional provided customers with an average return on investment of more than 200% and an annual savings of from $187 per desktop to $387 for mobile users as calculated over a three-year period.

To further prove its point, Microsoft touted examples of several customers.

To date, Siemens AG has migrated more than 180,000 employees, or about 40% of its workforce, to Windows XP Professional.

'Our goals are to make better products and exceed our customers' expectations, so that they can do business with us more easily and quickly,' said John Minnick, Siemens' principal of corporate IT. 'In evaluating Windows XP Professional, we can already see that it's good for productivity; it's good for business; and it's allowing us to realize our Any4 vision of access to any resource, by anyone, anywhere, anytime.'

Pella Corp. is in the process of upgrading its 2,200 desktop and laptop PCs from a mixed environment of Windows 95, Windows 98, and Windows NT to Windows XP Professional and Office XP. With 75% of its deployment complete, Pella anticipates an overall savings of $250,000 annually in IT support and administration.

'Simply stated, using Microsoft Windows XP helps Pella deliver our high-quality windows and doors to our customers faster and more efficiently,' said Jim Thomas, Pella' s senior business systems manager. 'Compared with our old mix of Windows 95, Windows 98 and Windows NT desktop operating systems, Windows XP is more stable and reliable, and easier to maintain, which allows our workforce to focus its attention on making great products and providing superior sales, installation and service.'

How to calculate
Microsoft, using a Gartner model, contends that managers should look beyond just IT department cost savings and consider total business benefits. The company contends that benefits accrue from 'a dependable, connected client platform.'

The Gartner model is called Total Value of Opportunity (TVO). 'The TVO model evaluates how a technology investment will contribute to business success,' said Michael Smith, Gartner's senior research director. 'It's as dependent on the business performance levels and management accountabilities as it is on the technology. TVO provides a more complete view of the effects of IT-enabled business initiatives and bridges the language barrier between business executives and IT professionals to more clearly demonstrate how a technology initiative benefits their overall business objectives.'

Business Value Proposition specifics
The Microsoft Desktop Business Value Proposition will be open to qualified applicants that have more than 5,000 PCs running previous versions of Microsoft Windows (Windows 95, Windows 98, or Windows NT 4.0 Workstation) or competing products as their primary client environment, and that want to base their decision for adopting the Windows XP Professional and Office XP client platform on business metrics. The million-dollar set-aside by Microsoft will fund studies using the TVO methodology. The studies will be reviewed by Gartner to ensure accuracy and objectivity.

Each Microsoft Desktop Business Value engagement will last from one week to three weeks, depending on the complexity of the customer's IT environment, and will include a value study based on Gartner's new TVO methodology as well as a two-day consulting review of deployment recommendations focused on areas identified in the study. Enrollment will start immediately, and Microsoft Desktop Business Value Proposition engagements are expected to be scheduled by Nov. 1. Customers can obtain enrollment details by sending a request to .

Control Engineering Daily News Desk
Gary A. Mintchell, senior editor

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