Creative ideas are needed to develop the best functions. A workshop room is available to all our colleagues for this purpose. But to ensure that creativity can flow here at all times, the equipment must also be suitable. That’s why the entire IT equipment has been given an update. In this interview, Sebi reveals exactly what is now possible and how we are also focusing on sustainability.
Hello Sebi, a lot has happened in your IT department this year in terms of general IT equipment. Many workstations have already been equipped with USB-C monitors and more will be expanded soon. What improvements are you currently working on, or will you work on in the future?
Sebi: We are currently working on the modernization of our existing mobile phones, even for VAIVA users only without Audi MDM. Protective lenses and VAIVA phone cases will soon be available for everyone. Furthermore, we modernized our workshop room after the old TV was unfortunately defective. That’s why we decided to completely re-equip the room’s IT technology.
What modernizations have taken place or are still taking place?
Sebi: At first, we thought about getting a new, large TV and hanging it on the wall. Steininger, Helmut (VAI-T1) then came up with the idea of a modern ultra-short throw 4K laser projector, as he himself owns a home cinema. When we took a closer look at his solution and estimated the costs, we decided on his idea. In addition, there was a good offer for a combination package with projector and 120 inch screen at that time, which we then ordered directly. Unfortunately, the electrical and janitorial work is still missing here, but these will follow in the coming weeks. In addition, we have set up a USB-C docking station (USB-C is currently our big topic 😉) so that we can ensure compatibility for everyone, including external ones.
That sounds great. What memory of the construction still sticks in your mind the most?
Sebi: When we first looked at the big picture, of course. That was very impressive and we immediately received positive feedback. But there was a long way to go: Since the ultra-short-throw projector requires special distances from the floor and the wall, a normal living room sideboard was not an option. The only option, which is also cost-effective, is to build it yourself. For this purpose, Andreas, had the great idea to use two more KALAX shelves, which harmonize with the already existing ones. Since a delivery from IKEA is always quite time-consuming and expensive, I spontaneously bought the shelves on vacation and brought them with me. It was a bit tighter in my camper on the way home 😉. We bought the rest of the materials here at the local hardware store and Andreas, Helmut, Alessandro and I then assembled the piece of furniture.
Will there be any other innovations in the workshop room?
Sebi: To replace the clutter of cables, another USB-C docking station is planned. Unfortunately, wireless solutions have not achieved the desired success and are not supported in the Audi environment without the installation of drivers. Soon there will also be a tablet on which you can take part in meetings in the room. This is intended to make it possible to show things up close. Writing notes and filming with your mobile phone is now a thing of the past. However, we are currently still waiting for delivery.
Will other meeting rooms get such a great upgrade as well?
Sebi: Unfortunately, not to this extent. The workshop room should retain its unique selling point. But all meeting rooms will soon get a second display for the remote participants. In addition, USB-C docking stations are now set up everywhere to ensure compatibility across devices.
How did you come up with the idea of switching everything to USB-C?
Sebi: Since 2021, all of our newly ordered laptops, whether HP Elitebook or ZBook, have had USB-C ports. With the switch to mobile working and flex workstations, working with the new devices in existing places became difficult. Since we will continue to modernize and replace our devices in the future, a switch to the universal and sustainable USB-C port is indispensable.
Do you have any other points about sustainability?
Sebi: Rather small things, but even those make a big difference. For example, I recently changed our inventory labels to a smaller format. This allows us to use larger rolls, which have reduced the price per label by a third. Since we use fewer rolls overall, there is of course less packaging waste. Soon there will also be hardware donations for non-profit associations, but you will learn more about that in another article by Andreas. 😊