Quick start to meetings saves money, improves efficiency for Intel

Intel says it has improved employee productivity with 'wireless' conference rooms

Getting meetings under way faster and more efficiently can contribute to cost savings and productivity gains, as Intel highlighted in its annual IT performance report on Monday.

Intel has established over 500 "wireless" conference rooms where meetings start within seconds of everyone gathering. The collaboration and sharing tools are instantly deployed wirelessly and that has helped save time and money, said Steve Sciarappo, vice president at Intel's information technology group.

That wireless concept will be expanded this year, Sciarappo said. The underlying technology behind wireless conference rooms is Intel's homegrown Unite toolset, with which users can also share room resources like whiteboards and monitors and invite remote participants to meetings. The Unite technology is available on Intel PCs with vPro chips.

Unite also saves time otherwise lost from connecting cables to projectors and monitors. Intel didn't provide the productivity hours or money saved as a result of the wireless conference rooms so far. However, the company hopes to improve productivity by 112,000 hours when the Unite technology is deployed to 2,300 meeting rooms worldwide in 2016, according to a company spokeswoman.

Overall, Intel spent roughly 2.5 percent of its annual 2015 revenue on IT, down from 2.6 percent in 2014. Other contributing factors also helped reduce Intel's IT costs.

Intel is using sensor and Internet of Things technologies to improve factory efficiency. Large volumes of data are collected from the factories and then analyzed, which has made it easier to spot faults and defects. Manufacturing defects can be spotted and analyzed in 30 seconds versus four hours previously, and glitches can be fixed faster.  That has helped save 160 hours per quarter, and by 2017 Intel hopes to reduce related spending by $100 million.

The company has 144,040 servers in data centers, up from 84,379 the previous year. Intel also reduced cooling costs while managing to process more data. Advanced analytics and machine learning have improved sales, maintain inventory, speed chip development and improve factory efficiency.

The company has moved to in-memory processing for analytics. That has helped speed up data collection and transaction processing. In-memory processing has resulted in 62 percent faster data warehouse queries, Intel estimated.

Intel also deployed 238 mobile apps, among them an app to find the closest available conference room, which could save time in large campuses. There were 50,100 smartphones and 4,800 tablets issued to Intel employees last year.

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Agam Shah

IDG News Service
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