Methodist Ladies’ College

Services expertise for smooth, school-wide Surface deployment at Methodist Ladies’ College Perth

The Surface Pro and Surface Go deployment, as a joint Compnow and MLC IT Department project, was to provide a current, versatile and productive computing solution for the College’s student cohort.

The focus of Methodist Ladies’ College (MLC) Perth, is on best practice learning experiences for the 1,045 girls, ranging from pre-primary to Year 12.

The Challenge

The selection and deployment of 500+ student laptops, with an absolute deadline of day one of the new school year.

The Solution

Compnow’s managed rollout and comprehensive after-sales services.

The Benefits
  • Efficiencies from single device and common platform
  • Compnow’s deep understanding of education environment needs and solutions
  • Exemplary pre- and post- sales service
  • Compnow resource dedication for on time rollout
  • Bespoke customer portal for streamlined, pre-approved purchasing and repair

It’s difficult to manage a rollout like this - when we had to be ready from 8:30am on Day 1 of the new school year. By accomplishing it, with Compnow, we sent a very important signal to the girls and their parents about the importance of our linked pedagogy and technology strategy.

Vanessa Smith Director of Academic Operations
Methodist Ladies’ College

The Challenge

“In looking at technology adoption, our focus is always on how to meet best practice requirements of teaching and learning,” says Vanessa Smith, Director of Acadmic Operations at MLC.

MLC is committed to the Microsoft environment and the productivity gains from its single ecosystem. This includes a policy of having students and teachers using the same equipment.

With the arrival of the latest scheduled device upgrade, MLC trialled a number of laptops and premium stylus and docking options.


The Solution

In selecting a project partner, Dave Belson, ILT Manager at MLC, says, “We did our due diligence beyond just price checking because, for us, it’s not simply a dollar figure transaction. Compnow delivers extra value.”

An order was to be placed for 519 units, combining the latest Surface Go for junior school students, and Surface Pro 8s for senior school students. But as step one of the rollout, teachers were given the new devices, and trained in their use and how to best support students. Vanessa says,“This period of review was to make absolutely certain the Surface devices would be the best fit for our learners.”

The staff deployment was the first major project with Compnow and “when we were placing our order it was in the context of device shortages. Compnow helped us sleep at night as they used their national buying power to pull together the numbers we needed. They communicated with us all the time about how they would make things happen if there were delivery delays.”

“We couldn’t have been happier with the alacrity of the service and support. It gave us full confidence to fulfil the student rollout,” Dave says.

The 12-business day implementation project saw Compnow enrol and monitor the deployment of the devices. Using Microsoft’s Intune cloud-based endpoint management solution, all devices were asset tagged and scanned into Compnow’s automated deployment system for registration. The AutoPilot feature in Intune was used to pre-configure each machine and install the MLC environment’s software. An onsite test verified the AutoPilot enrolment could be replicated at Compnow’s Engineering Department.

The sealed and re-boxed devices were delivered to MLC in time to hand to students on day one of the rollout.

“They do an inordinate amount of work to ensure ‘out of the box’ means exactly that. From the ordering and financing arrangements, to the device setup and provisioning, and on-time delivery — it could not have gone any smoother,” Dave says.

“It should be emphasised how supported our team felt leading up to deployment.” At rollout, Compnow was onsite to assist with any unforeseen issues, “They’d done such quality work behind the scenes, we didn’t end up needing them.”

A support and maintenance agreement was put in place to ensure continued lifecycle success. To efficiently capture the project’s details, for both Compnow and MLC’s ongoing management of the new fleet, the deployment process was fully documented and a checklist created.

The warranty and onsite repair arrangements work seamlessly. A Compnow bespoke portal has streamlined end to end customer needs. “I don’t have to phone or email, I don’t have to get sign offs or raise purchase orders. Anything I need from repairs and finances through to purchasing is a click away on the portal,” Dave says.

“And now, its Compnow’s after-sales that really tells the story. Their account manager drops in and hot desks with us once a fortnight. We throw bits at him and he uses the opportunity to check on how we’re going. He tells us what other schools are doing and suggests things to us ­— but doesn’t push.”

The Benefits

Vanessa says, “All Compnow’s hard work through the entire process was outstanding! Everyone involved in the overall coordination, as well as the Engineering, Deployment and Warehouse teams, went so far above and beyond to work in partnership with the College, to make the rollout such a total success.”

“Compnow makes us feel as though we’re their only customer.”

In building the relationship with Compnow, Dave says, “We’ve come to understand the amazing breadth of their services. They know schools inside out. They know the vendors inside out. Compnow knows how join the dots, to offer relevant services to get you to your goal.”


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