Zespri has been able to create a 1950s style drive-in movie-themed meeting room in the space created by getting rid of its physical servers and migrating 95 per cent of its global computer infrastructure into the cloud.
The Server Room Reboot was a collaboration between Zespri, Microsoft and creative agency Y&R, and highlighted one of the benefits of cloud computing.
Zespri's global manager of information systems Andrew Goodin said migrating the majority of its global SAP platform and other applications to Microsoft Azure meant Zespri could meet the growing IT demands of its global business. Azure gave Zespri the scalability and flexibility to handle more work seamlessly, requiring less regular maintenance and interruptions, as well as freeing up space.
"After moving to Azure, we had the opportunity to refurbish an old, tired, windowless room into a unique space for staff to take a break or have a meeting."
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The drive-in themed room features a convertible car retrofitted with swivel seats, and a Smart TV so it works as both a high-tech meeting room and breakout area.
The drive-in theme evolved from a Dragons den-style pitch process where Zespri employees were put into teams to come up with and present ideas to a panel of judges.
The winning team then had a workshop with Y&R's production team to finalise the idea, look and feel.
Y&R managing director Steve Kane said the agency was blown away by the level of engagement and the range of creative suggestions submitted by Zespri staff for rebooting their extra space.
"It was fantastic to see so many outrageous and outlandish suggestions for how the space could be used, everything from a yoga bar, to a petting zoo to some kind of zero gravity buffet."
A Zespri spokesperson said the company had yet to decide whether the themed meeting room would be transferred when it moved in 2018 to new premises on a site in Mount Maunganui.
Microsoft's cloud and enterprise lead Dirk Develter said he believed the growing use of the cloud was inevitable in the future workplace.