DD2103 JAMF Casper suite

Type of decision: 
Director's decision
Date signed: 
12 April 2017
Decision by: 
Martin Clarke, Executive Director of Resources

Executive summary

The majority of GLA staff and Members use Windows PCs for their day to day work. However, the use of Apple laptops, tablets, mobile devices and desktops have steadily increased. The GLA Technology Group has software systems (mainly a software called System Centre Configuration Manager or SCCM) that can centrally manage the Windows operating system and software that runs on Windows. SCCM can, amongst other things, install software, security updates etc remotely and ensure that all PCs at the GLA are the same. No such capability exists for Apple devices. Through a competitive evaluation, a software system called Casper has been chosen as the Apple device management software. 


That the Executive Director of Resources approves:

1.    the appointment of JAMF Software following a competitive procurement carried out by TfL Procurement.

2.    the expenditure of up to £80,051 over three years for the following:

a.    100 Casper licences; 
b.    initial installation;
c.    technical support and maintenance services;
d.    training GLA’s Technology Group on the use and management of the Casper software; and
e.    9 additional days of onsite service 

Part 1: Non-confidential facts and advice

Introduction and background

1.1    The GLA has used Microsoft Windows based software and PCs since its inception. However, the use of Apple desktop, laptop, tablet and mobile devices has steadily increased in the past few years and is set to continue.  Whilst Windows devices are fully capable of being managed remotely by the Technology Group using an administration software called SCCM, the GLA does not have the same capability with respect to Apple devices and requires each device to be individually and directly managed (e.g. installation of software, operating system updates etc). Given the growth in Apple devices, the Technology Group needs to procure an Apple device management system to provide the same level of services as is the case for Windows devices. 

1.2    A desktop based study was used to compare products on the market. The Technology Group identified the following requirements:

1. Apple operating system (OS) security patching (Install software updates including security patches) 
2. Apple OS software upgrades (ability to upgrade Apple devices to latest supported version – e.g. El Capitan, Sierra).
3. Apple OS builds (ability for the Technology Group to compile and roll out standard Apple builds including Office 2016, Anti-virus software, Fonts, etc).
4. Apple OS Packaging of Software (e.g. Microsoft Office 2016 & Kaspersky). 
5. Remote device management (ability to manage GLA Apple devices that are not connected to the internal network).
6. Apple software reporting (to remotely identify software and versions, performance etc.).
7. Apple hardware reporting (to identify what Apple hardware the GLA has and the technical attributes of each - memory, hard drive capacity, processer type, age etc).

These requirements were used to evaluate the range of market leading software products currently available. The products evaluated included: AssetStudio, Casper, Jira, Touchdown and Snow. This evaluation led to Casper being chosen as the most appropriate Apple computer management software for the GLA.

1.3    The vendor for the Casper software suite is JAMF Software., based in the US. There are a number of UK resellers of the product, all of whom were requested to quote against a standard requirements specification (as summarised below): 


Licensing for 100 devices for three years. 
Licensing includes:
•    One perpetual or subscription software license for each managed device. 
•    Casper software Server licence 
•    administrator licences
•    documentation 

•    Installation of Casper software 
•    System Administration overview of the Casper suite 
•    Creation of common policies and software permissions 
•    Inventory management and workflows 
•    Packaging and imaging 
•    Software and OS updates and deployment 
•    Documentation and access to knowledge base materials. 

•    Account management
•    training for administrators
•    6 service days per year
•    24/7 technical support

Objectives and expected outcomes

•    To procure the CASPER suite through a competitive exercise between UK based resellers; 
•    To enable the Technology Group to fully manage the growing number of corporate Apple devices;
•    To train Technology Group engineer staff to a sufficient level of competency in the use and management of the Casper software.

Equality comments

This procurement has no impact on groups with protected characteristics.

Other considerations

4.1    Mayoral strategies 

The integration of an Apple device management system fully supports the work of the Mayor and the Assembly in utilising the latest in new technologies to maximise modern capabilities that provide increased flexibility for GLA staff.

4.2    Risks 

There is a risk of delay in covering the entire Apple estate at the GLA owing to staff (and therefore device) availability.  This risk will be mitigated by the Technology Group Service desk being given the capability to liaise with customers directly to get their device covered by Casper.  The Technology Group will also maintain a list of users and devices to manage the rollout of the coverage.

There is a risk of disruption on devices as a result of incorporating them into the Casper management regime.  This risk will be mitigated by through testing of a sample of all Apple devices and models currently in use.

Financial comments

Approval is being sought for expenditure of £80,051 and this will be fully funded from the TG budget for 2017-18. The services are covering 3 financial years up until 2019-20. These costs are broken down in the table below;

Financial year










Planned delivery approach and next steps



Procurement of contract [for externally delivered projects]

February 2017

Delivery Start Date [for project proposals]

April 2017

Delivery End Date [for project proposals]

April 2017

Project Closure: [for project proposals]

April 2017

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