City of Sint-Niklaas sees workload for ICT Citrix management drop up to 40% due to new virtual environment

Sint-Niklaas in East Flanders has a population of ca. 75,000 inhabitants, making it the biggest city in Waasland. For the renewal of the ICT infrastructure, the city called on Raido/SecureLink.

The ICT department provides technical support to all municipal services and other services such as those of the Public Centre for Social Welfare (abbreviated as OCMW in Dutch).  

Cities and municipalities must digitise more and more.  Patrick Thierens, ICT department head at the City of Sint-Niklaas: “We are faced with a provision of service citizens expect to be available round the clock, year round. Conventional services are being automated and furthermore, citizens are requesting digital access to documents. Just as in the banking sector. Furthermore, they want online services so that they no longer have to go to the town hall in person.”

IT is consequently becoming increasingly more crucial for a city of this size.  That is a major challenge, because as an IT department you must always seek to strike a balance between maintaining existing applications in operation and making the necessary changes for digitisation. The configuration of the IT department was adapted recently to steer things in the right direction.  On the one hand, a nine strong ICT Operations team headed by Patrick Thierens is responsible for all technical projects and the daily running of IT.  The team manages all applications and the network, including security. Furthermore, there is a strategic coordination and digitisation team that considers the input of technology and the unlocking of applications for citizens in a qualitative manner.

Importance of the right partners

This has often to be done with fewer people. There are broader responsibilities and an ever increasing need for more specific knowledge which advancing rapidly. “That is precisely why it is important to be able to surround ourselves, as the IT department, with the right partners in specific fields such as virtualisation, security or networking.