Citrix and IBM Address Critical Workforce Continuity Needs of Businesses to Maintain Productivity During a Crisis

IBM to Provide Citrix's "Project Kent" as Integral Part of New Virtual Workplace Recovery Service Product, Enabling Workers to Access Critical Applications When Displaced from the Office

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Orlando, FL - 23 Oct 2006: Today at its ninth annual business and technology conference, Citrix iForum™ Global 2006, Citrix Systems, Inc. (Nasdaq: CTXS), the global leader in application delivery infrastructure, and IBM (NYSE: IBM), the global leader in technology services, unveiled plans for a new offering code-named “Project Kent,” an end-to-end turnkey solution that provides dispersed workers the ability to connect to applications, data and people during a disruptive event. Citrix’s new workforce continuity solution will be offered as an integral part of IBM’s Virtual Workplace Continuity service product and is the only solution of its kind that integrates emergency notifications, employee updates, access to applications, and communications and collaboration within a single solution. Citrix’s solution will use USB sticks to simplify the access to business tools during a disruptive situation – a necessity during times of crisis. With Project Kent, medium to large enterprises will now have the ability to connect employees to the resources they need to remain productive during a disruption as well as provide them with the emergency information that they need to stay informed.

“IBM’s new Virtual Workplace Continuity service product helps clients focus on the human side of business continuity to ensure that employees can still remain productive when they cannot get to the workplace,” said Philippe Jarre, global vice president, IBM Business Continuity and Resiliency Services. “IBM and Citrix’s new solution directly supports the goals of the service — to help employees, partners and suppliers to communicate, collaborate and access vital applications and data in the face of a workforce disruption.”

The IBM Virtual Workplace Continuity service product will be available from IBM's Business Continuity and Resiliency Services unit and represents the latest step in IBM's strategy to deliver traditional labor-based technology services in a manner more similar to the delivery of technology products.

IBM is already a leader in traditional workplace recovery services for front-office and back-office operations and this new solution is a logical progression that offers customers additional choice and flexibility as they look at all dimensions of their continuity program. The new workplace continuity solution jointly announced today also directly supports IBM’s Contingency Planning Assessment – a pandemic preparedness service – and is a logical next step to “operationalize” a continuity strategy to allow people to work, communicate and collaborate from anywhere they have access to a PC and an Internet connection.

Only 25 Percent of Enterprises “Very Prepared” for a Major Workforce Disruption

A recent commissioned study on Workforce Continuity by Forrester Consulting on behalf of Citrix Systems found that although many of today’s enterprises have taken measures and implemented disaster recovery plans to safeguard their data centers, they have not taken the necessary measures to connect dispersed employees to the business tools they need to work away from the office as if they were at the office, such as such as e-mail, ERP and CRM systems, and end-user data1. The study indicated that only 25 percent of enterprises feel they are “very prepared” to reconnect the workforce in the face of a major workforce disruption2.

Business interruptions such as site closures due to fire, natural disasters, transit strikes, pandemics and severe weather potentially leave the data center unaffected, but can displace employees from their workplace – significantly impacting the productivity of the employee and in turn, financially impacting the company. The Forrester study indicated that a 5,000-person enterprise would suffer a $1.36 million productivity loss as a result of a three-day workforce disruption. Compound this by a recent survey of Disaster Recovery Journal readers, which highlighted that it takes up to five days for the workforce to return to normalcy after an event3, the potential financial loss for businesses is substantial.

According to the study, “Lost worker productivity can cost millions in this age of 24x7 operations, increased competition, and heightened customer expectation.” The study continues by identifying that, “Mitigating crisis-related losses involves maintaining the same level of uninterrupted customer service that customers are accustomed to. Reconnecting as many workers as possible (at a reasonable cost) to their applications, data, and communication tools is now the goal of workforce continuity.”

Operationalizing” Business Continuity Plans

The Forrester study indicates that, over time, enterprise spending on workforce continuity could approximate the current spending on data center continuity4. While enterprises may have the most robust disaster recovery strategy in place to protect data, that data is useless if people cannot access it during a disruptive event. The new workforce continuity offering from Citrix and IBM will provide an end-to-end solution that helps to “operationalize” a business continuity plan – in that it spans people, processes and technology:

“For today’s businesses, access to information is the foundation for survival. As the most comprehensive provider of solutions that deliver any application, to any user, in any location, looking at how to address the modern challenges of workforce continuity is a natural innovation for Citrix,” said Murli Thirumale, group vice president and general manager, Advanced Solutions Group, Citrix Systems. “Business continuity is about the business. Disaster recovery is about the data. Workforce continuity is about the people. By helping customers to operationalize their business continuity plans, Citrix and IBM are helping them to ensure the financial impact to their business is as minimal as possible during a disruption, while also securing the most valuable asset to the business – their employees.”

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1 1 A Commissioned Study by Forrester Consulting on behalf of Citrix “Workforce Continuity: Keeping People Productive During A Workforce Disruption or Disaster.” August 2006

2 2 A Commissioned Study by Forrester Consulting on behalf of Citrix “Workforce Continuity: Keeping People Productive During A Workforce Disruption or Disaster.” August 2006

3 3 Workforce Continuity Survey of Disaster Recovery Journal Readers. August 2006

4 4 A Commissioned Study by Forrester Consulting on behalf of Citrix “Workforce Continuity: Keeping People Productive During A Workforce Disruption or Disaster.” August 2006

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