How SHI helped this international pharma company take its iPad refresh to the next level

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An international pharmaceutical company was ready to refresh devices used by its field sales force – more than 1,500 agents. The organization didn’t just want to replace the devices, it wanted to upgrade them.

The company still wanted to outfit its field agents with tablets, but it wanted to provide additional accessories that delivered the functionality of a laptop while still maintaining the mobility the agents had become accustomed to. The devices also needed to be enrolled into VMware Workspace One, the company’s mobile device management (MDM) system.

It didn’t end there.

The company wished to make the transition as smooth as possible for its sales force. That meant delivering ready-to-use devices and extras in a single shipment and providing a hassle-free method for returning the older assets.

Here’s how the pharma company made it happen, with SHI’s help.

Upgrading 1,500 iPads without missing a beat

The first step: Build a device for today and tomorrow – one that’s more than a laptop replacement and provides the versatility, security, and app ecosystem of a modern platform.

After consulting the organization on its needs, SHI presented several solutions that combined the mobility of a tablet with the power, usability, and flexibility of a laptop. The 12.9-inch iPad Pro with Wi-Fi + Cellular offered the functionality of both a laptop and an iPad, and its slim design made it ideal for remote workers.

Once a device had been chosen, SHI then worked to ensure the pharma company had the third-party accessories it needed, from cases and privacy screen overlays to keyboards and wireless mice.

To ensure field agents could hit the ground running, SHI also paired both the keyboard and mouse to the iPad before shipping the devices. By having all their accessories connected when they received them, field agents had one less thing to worry about.

Balancing MDM, security, and compliance

MDM can be challenging. This engagement was no exception.

SHI had to make sure each device was properly set up for a specific field agent. This can be daunting on traditionally managed devices. When coupled with HIPAA regulations and strict, company-specific network security requirements, you’re looking at an even taller order.

But even under these circumstances, in a heavily regulated industry where data security is especially vital, SHI was more than up for the job.

After considering and testing various options, the pharma company decided to leverage SHI’s configuration services, choosing Apple Business Manager, Apple Configurator, and VMware Workspace One as the key components of the overall solution. With this MDM solution, administrators could lock down a device, design rules to enforce compliance requirements, structure password complexity, and more.

Using this staging method, SHI could connect to the company’s network and set up the device on behalf of the individual field agent. With their MDM profile already installed directly on the iPad, sales agents could simply turn on the device and start working.

The result was an efficient, secure, and streamlined solution that could manage these devices remotely, making it easy to roll out new apps and services.

Shipping and return without hassle

The pharma company wanted a complete soup-to-nuts solution. That included a straightforward shipping and return process.

As part of the deployment, the SHI Configuration Center consolidated the cased iPad and all accessories into a single, custom-kitted box for streamlined shipping, tracking, and waste reduction. When agents opened the packages, they found the devices ready to use.

Additionally, SHI made returning and recycling the older devices as simple as possible. Each custom package also included a return tag and packaging to send back the older iPad through SHI’s lifecycle services. Agents just slipped their older device into the pack and dropped it in the mail.

Fulfilling customer needs and looking toward the future

The project was split into four phases. As of this post, SHI has completed the first three, delivering 1,245 iPad Pros and accessories to field agents. The final phase, which includes the remaining 345 units, is now underway.

The client wanted flexibility. It wanted an overall solution that wasn’t limited to just a tablet. That’s exactly what it got – and now, it may even open this creative solution to other use cases outside of field agents.

Following the success of this job, SHI and the pharma company have begun discussing the company’s overall mobility strategy, including cellular activation, SIM card sourcing, and more.

Whatever the job entails, you can expect the same result from SHI: upgrading users to the technology they need to do their jobs without stress.