Economy Guide for Education Institutions

A recurring theme that comes up a lot when I speak to customers is the effect the economic downturn is having on their budgets at a local level.  Many have been asked to plan for significant percentage cuts in the light of budget freezes in this current financial year ending in June, and others are staring at further cuts in the new financial year.  I am sure this is the same the world over right now.  Ironically at a time when budgets are being cut, institutions, especially those in the higher education sector, see their enrollments go up.  As workers retrain for the jobs that may be required in the ultimate economic upswing, they will get the required skills at academic institutions.  In the light of this, education customers that I speak to are leaving no stone unturned in extracting the maximum value from their IT investments.

At Microsoft, we believe that, by taking a proactive approach, you can not only sustain your institution through these trying times, but also make progress toward achieving your objectives.  It doesn’t always require major new investments on your part to improve your IT infrastructure and efficiency – from the server room to your workstations. I encourage you to take a look at the steps you can take to reduce IT and organizational costs and enable your people to work smarter—by leveraging the products you already have, and by looking at programs like Live@edu.

You can find some good examples of ideas (including Live@edu, of course) on our new website http://www.microsoft.com/education/economy/default.aspx. You can also join Rod Gode for a Webcast on January 28th at 10:30 Pacific focusing on how customers can save with solutions from Microsoft. To register Click here or visit http://www.educationwebcasts.com/Webcast.aspx?i=4182

Topics will include:

· Saving with Virtualization technologies

· Maintaining and expanding IT services with software you may already own

· Saving by spending less time managing and deploying IT infrastructure

I hope this helps.

Jonny

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