Kraft Foods adds new support for employees choosing Macs

Posted:
in macOS edited January 2014
Following the general trend away from top-down, centralized corporate computing monoculture, Kraft Foods has initiated a "Bring Your Own Computer" program for its employees, providing new support for employees who want to use a Mac.



The new program, detailed in documents obtained by AppleInsider, notes that, "everyone works differently. For some, a standard computer or laptop is just the right tool to get their work done. For others, a computer with a little something extra ? a different operating system, custom hardware, more memory, etc. ? is the best fit for their job."



Kraft's new employee initiative "gives you the freedom to choose the right computer for your lifestyle," according to the fact sheet the company distributed to employees. The program is described as "best suited for employees who want to use a particular type of computer that isn?t currently supplied or supported by Kraft Foods, such as a Mac," and prefer to take their work system home, "have the experience and know-how to take care of their own technical support," and "work out of the office on a regular basis."



As a new benefit for Kraft Foods employees, "Bring Your Own Computer lets you purchase the computer of your choice, giving you the flexibility to accomplish your work on your own computer in your own way, when and where you want. Kraft Foods helps pay for the costs with a stipend. In return, you agree to maintain your own computer and follow certain guidelines," the fact sheet outlines.



The new benefit is currently available to Kraft's salaried employees in the US, with future plans to expand the program globally, "where it makes business sense." Participating employees must comply with company policies regarding software, security and data requirements, which includes installing Microsoft Office and appropriate anti-virus software and turning on disk encryption.



The company outlines minimum system requirements for the program that effectively limit it to PCs running Windows Vista/7 Ultimate (employees can't use the Home, Business, or Professional editions) or any Intel Mac running Snow Leopard with at least a 2GHz processor and 2GB of RAM.



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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 85
    mr.scottmr.scott Posts: 124member
    Well isn't that cool!! Work on your Mac while eating your Mac and Cheese! Was that to cheesy? Okay, time to go home...
  • Reply 2 of 85
    That would certainly keep the IT department busy...

    Big challenges ahead!
  • Reply 3 of 85
    spotonspoton Posts: 645member
    Microsoft Office, it´s the cheesiest!
  • Reply 4 of 85
    aybaraaybara Posts: 27member
    I wish they would do that where I work.



    My company provided computer is an IBM ThinkPad that IBM officially stopped supporting two years ago. It has a whopping 1 GB of RAM, Pentium-M chip (predates the Centrino that came out before Single Core chips) and a 1024x768 15-inch screen.



    It struggles to run the company image of WinXP.
  • Reply 5 of 85
    nasseraenasserae Posts: 3,153member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by ZorrowQc View Post


    That would certainly keep the IT department busy...

    Big challenges ahead!



    Based on the article each employee who decide to use his own Mac must do his own support. I think the IT people couldn't be much happier.
  • Reply 6 of 85
    rhyderhyde Posts: 294member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by NasserAE View Post


    Based on the article each employee who decide to use his own Mac must do his own support. I think the IT people couldn't be much happier.



    Is it just me, or does this sound like a way to get the employees to pay for their own computers? I got the distinct impression from the article that the Mac users were buying their own computers (in addition to providing their own tech support).
  • Reply 7 of 85
    sfoalexsfoalex Posts: 22member
    I've been doing this for years. I have bought my own PCs and Macs, my own software licenses, etc. Letting your employer pick your software and hardware is easily one of the biggest mistakes in corporate america today. There is no such thing as a one-size fits all approach. And those that don't realize this can expect to pay for it dearly in lost productivity.



    It's not even a PC or Mac debate. I have bought both. It's a question of letting the person who actually has to do the work pick what will best accomplish that work. Who could possibly know better than the person doing the work?



    I'll ask it another way. Would you want your heart surgeon to pick the tools needed for open heart surgery, or a hospital administrator who never went to medical school? I think we all know the answer. So why does IT for a second believe they somehow know better than I do what tools are needed. They don't. They couldn't. And to believe otherwise is simply ridiculous.
  • Reply 8 of 85
    veblenveblen Posts: 201member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by NasserAE View Post


    Based on the article each employee who decide to use his own Mac must do his own support. I think the IT people couldn't be much happier.



    I've found that quasi-technical people "doing their own support" makes for more work for IT folks not less. When things break the IT person has to figure out what kind of bee-bop setup each user has. It sounds like an IT nightmare to me.



    People being able to run macs sounds cool though. I know if I worked there I'd like it.
  • Reply 9 of 85
    I wonder if they're using the Mac XenApp client to connect to a XenApp server... this is how Citrix does BYOC... and sells it.
  • Reply 10 of 85
    veblenveblen Posts: 201member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by sfoalex View Post


    I've been doing this for years. I have bought my own PCs and Macs, my own software licenses, etc. Letting your employer pick your software and hardware is easily one of the biggest mistakes in corporate america today. There is no such thing as a one-size fits all approach. And those that don't realize this can expect to pay for it dearly in lost productivity.



    It's not even a PC or Mac debate. I have bought both. It's a question of letting the person who actually has to do the work pick what will best accomplish that work. Who could possibly know better than the person doing the work?



    I'll ask it another way. Would you want your heart surgeon to pick the tools needed for open heart surgery, or a hospital administrator who never went to medical school? I think we all know the answer. So why does IT for a second believe they somehow know better than I do what tools are needed. They don't. They couldn't. And to believe otherwise is simply ridiculous.





    I'm sure you haven't had any issues. Your probably pretty computer savvy. I can see that for a small company. Things get more difficult as organizations grow larger. 10-15 different computer setups is no big deal. When you start talking about 1000's things get more difficult. People end up having different versions of software. This makes it incredibly difficult to patch for security and bug fixes. People start buying rogue software that works for themselves but not for the company as a whole. People end up splintering off and you end up with 15 solutions for a simple problem. People purchase software and leave with noone else knowing what tools they've been using because they are non-standard. I'm a big fan of individualized access, but company wide, wow.



    IT is supposed to be the experts on technology. Business users are supposed to be experts in business. They need to work together. In the more successful environments I've been a part of people business people and tech people work together not in silos. I think siloing is a huge problem in business today.
  • Reply 11 of 85
    veblenveblen Posts: 201member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by JasonQ13 View Post


    I wonder if they're using the Mac XenApp client to connect to a XenApp server... this is how Citrix does BYOC... and sells it.



    That would make the most sense. Deploying from a central location would solve the software compatibility and versioning issues inherent with so many dissimilar systems.
  • Reply 12 of 85
    nasseraenasserae Posts: 3,153member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by rhyde View Post


    Is it just me, or does this sound like a way to get the employees to pay for their own computers? I got the distinct impression from the article that the Mac users were buying their own computers (in addition to providing their own tech support).



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by veblen View Post


    I've found that quasi-technical people "doing their own support" makes for more work for IT folks not less. When things break the IT person has to figure out what kind of bee-bop setup each user has. It sounds like an IT nightmare to me.



    People being able to run macs sounds cool though. I know if I worked there I'd like it.



    It helps to read the article:



    "Kraft Foods helps pay for the costs with a stipend. In return, you agree to maintain your own computer and follow certain guidelines,"



    Meaning, buy your own Mac/Linux if you want and we will help you pay for it. However, don't come asking us for support. Sounds fair to me.
  • Reply 13 of 85
    cgc0202cgc0202 Posts: 624member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by ZorrowQc View Post


    That would certainly keep the IT department busy...

    Big challenges ahead!



    I do not have the links offhand, but there are other companies (e.g., IBM. a number of biotech companies) that opted for or investigating the use of multiple sources of computers for use in the office. What some actually found was that the Mac users used the IT department resources much less; thus saving costs for the company. As important, it improved employee productivity, especially those using the Mac systems.





    Quote:
    Originally Posted by rhyde View Post


    Is it just me, or does this sound like a way to get the employees to pay for their own computers? I got the distinct impression from the article that the Mac users were buying their own computers (in addition to providing their own tech support).



    If Kraft were providing the same subsidy as other companies, they provide a certain budget usually including an option for Apple care, at the discretion of the employee.



    Note that such programs are not mandatory, but employee option. The bottom line is that the employee must decide whether the subsidy provided will work to their advantage (see below).



    What companies found was that there was decrease in their budget usually alloted for IT services and personnel.



    Many Mac users would prefer to use Mac than PC, for many reasons already stated here in various threads. Thus, usually these programs are initiated or lobbied by Mac users within the company. As noted above, there are claims of increased productivity and satisfaction.



    There might be other advantages too for Mac users. You may use the computer for personal use -- especially at home. Usually with the subsidy, Mac users may be able to afford a higher end Mac that they can then use also for personal purposes (at home).



    Companies replenish their computers at defined cycles. Since Mac computers are known to last longer, the old computer bought by the employee with subsidy from the company, I assume might become the property of the employee (speculating here).





    CGC
  • Reply 14 of 85
    chris_cachris_ca Posts: 2,543member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by NasserAE View Post


    Based on the article each employee who decide to use his own Mac



    It's anyone who decides to use their own computer as their work computer, PC or a Mac.
  • Reply 15 of 85
    sheffsheff Posts: 1,407member
    Always good to hear about a Chicagoland company other then Moto on a tech website.



    I hope more companies would start doing this because having a crappy old machine that you can't upgrade makes for a terrible work experience. (I work on p4 windows xp machines)
  • Reply 16 of 85
    Kraft & Mac?



    Poison the body, nourish the mind?
  • Reply 17 of 85
    Hmmm...I can't think of one healthy food product Kraft or any of its subsidiaries make!
  • Reply 18 of 85
    veblenveblen Posts: 201member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by NasserAE View Post


    It helps to read the article:



    "Kraft Foods helps pay for the costs with a stipend. In return, you agree to maintain your own computer and follow certain guidelines,"



    Meaning, buy your own Mac/Linux if you want and we will help you pay for it. However, don't come asking us for support. Sounds fair to me.



    In my experience when there are business reasons to fix the broken system you broke it you fix it doesn't fly. That might be the stated policy for minor issues. However, if the person who's computer it is can't fix it and there is a critical reason to fix it, the IT person will be fixing it.
  • Reply 19 of 85
    cubertcubert Posts: 728member
    I wonder why the requirement for Snow Leopard and not just Leopard.



    It can't be THAT much different for their IT department to support.
  • Reply 20 of 85
    eriamjheriamjh Posts: 1,113member
    I wish I could bring my Macs to work. It would be faster than what I'm using now. Even my four year-old MBP...
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