In what has been described as the single biggest broadband deal of its kind in Ireland, Esat BT has inked a deal with Microsoft to provide broadband connectivity to more than 500 Microsoft teleworkers.
The agreement will see Esat BT’s ADSL technology installed in the homes of an initial 500 Microsoft employees. Work connecting employees has already commenced and will continue over the next few months.
The initiative will enable Microsoft’s Irish workforce to access and send data securely and quickly, which the company believes will help them to work quicker and smarter.
Microsoft’s teleworkers will be using Esat BT’s residential ADSL service, which gives users an “always on” internet connection at speeds of up to 512Kb/s – 10 times faster than standard dial up.
Microsoft Ireland’s general manager Joe Macri commented: “”As the single biggest corporate broadband deal in Ireland we believe it will have a significant impact. Not only is it an important investment in broadband roll-out in Ireland, but it will also have a very positive effect on Microsoft’s business in terms of employee productivity and flexibility. It’s faster, richer and more interactive user environment will be of enormous benefit for our field-based and flexi working Microsoft employees.
“To corporate Ireland I would reiterate the message that widespread demand and the consequent roll-out of broadband will contribute significantly to increased national competitiveness.”
Both Macri and Esat BT’s CEO Bill Murphy said they hoped the deal would spur other organisations to embark on similar initiatives.
Murphy said: “The utilisation of teleworking is a win-win situation for employees and employers because it enables staff to have a better work-life balance and because businesses benefit from increased staff retention and productivity.
“Ireland does lag behind in teleworking, but with flat-rate Internet access available nationwide and ADSL coverage increasing, everyone can now work from home cost-effectively.”
By John Kennedy