Helpdesk managers downbeat on Vista

IT helpdesk and support staff are in no rush to see Vista deployed, with only 5 percent saying it will be rolled out in their organisation in 2007

Just a week after the launch of Microsoft Vista to businesses, the new operating system continues to attract mixed messages on its adoption.

On Thursday, the helpdesk and support software company Axios Systems published the results of a survey that suggests only 5 percent of IT managers are aiming to deploy Vista during 2007.

The survey — of 240 IT directors and helpdesk managers of large UK and international organisations — showed that while Vista has become a major focus for some companies, others are happy to play wait and see.

Tasos Symeonides, chief executive of Axios, said the survey showed that while some companies may be attracted by the new features in Vista, they are realistic about its impact on their organisation. "The hype around Microsoft Windows Vista does not appear to have turned it into a priority for many IT directors/CIOs and helpdesk managers," he said.

There are other major issues facing IT directors and helpdesk managers in the deployment of Vista, according to Axios. One is simply a lack of suitable infrastructure for supporting the OS, which 22 percent cite as a bar to upgrading sooner. Another is the time required to train users on the new operating system, which 20 percent of users think will take too much time.

The figures contrast with data collected by ZDNet UK. According to our online survey of 1,305 IT professionals, conducted last week, 46 percent of respondents have plans to upgrade their desktop operating systems and the vast majority of those, or 41 percent of all respondents, plan to upgrade to Microsoft Vista. Fifty-one percent of those who plan to upgrade to Vista said they would begin the process in the next six months, rising to 70 percent in the next 12 months.

Companies have other pressing issues to contend with apart from Vista, according to the Axios survey. Around 31 percent of companies said IT service management would be a big focus for them in 2007, while 35 percent said they were concentrating on knowledge-management projects. Implementing VoIP was a priority for 18 percent of companies, while around 13 percent were concentrating on security software and 12 percent on business-intelligence software.