Toyota builds virtual desktops for its workforce with Nutanix

Has introduced a work-from-home program for about 13,000 employees.

Japanese car brand, Toyota Motor Corp has adopted the Nutanix cloud platform to build a virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) environment that can run 3D CAD software, delivering a new way of working for its Engineering Design Group.

The car manufacturer with approximately 360,000 employees worldwide was quick to announce its commitment to work style reform in 2016 and has introduced a work-from-home program for about 13,000 employees.

However, there were varying degrees of adoption among different departments. For example, the Engineering Design Group was not able to support a remote-work model for all employees. Team members had to work from their physical workstations in the office whenever working on design projects using 3D CAD software. In addition, the DX Promotion Division was facing challenges with workstation maintenance and procurement costs.

To shift gears and solve the issue, Toyota decided to leverage hyper-converged infrastructure (HCI) to build a VDI environment that can support high-performance applications and run 3D CAD software. The Nutanix cloud platform stood out for its ability to support Virtual Graphics Processing Unit (vGPU) functions required to render 3D graphics in HCI virtual environments. In addition, Nutanix’s flexibility and scalability were important factors to help the team quickly respond to changing business demands.

The Nutanix cloud platform enabled a VDI environment for approximately 1,000-devices and was up and running far ahead of Toyota’s initial schedule to expand its VDI environment. Employees in the Engineering Design Group also said the move enabled them to work in a new way, and this became even more important when they were forced to work from home due to the spread of COVID-19 but were able to continue performing design work without interruptions.

“Moving forward, our plan is to roll out similar systems not only to Toyota Motor but also to Toyota group companies,” said the DX Promotion Division’s Masanobu Takahisa. “In the future, we hope to also support CAE software on the VDI environment, and continue to promote work-style reform in the Engineering Design Group.”

In addition to expanding work-style options for employees in its Engineering Design Group, the move to Nutanix enabled Toyota to consolidate shared and underutilised workstations into its VDI environment, with the aim of eventually cutting the number of workstations to approximately half, which would also result in significant cost reductions.

“Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the elementary school that my child attends was closed in March 2020, and I was also forced to work from home,” said Naomi Tsuji of the Advanced Body Technology Development Division. “Thanks to the 3D CAD environment on VDI, I have been able to perform design work at home without any inconvenience.”





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