Your organization wants to unleash the power of a completely mobile workforce. Your users want to hop between corporate or personal devices, access their apps, data and desktops at any time and work from anywhere—home, public transportation or their favorite cafés—as easily as their desks.
In IT, you want to reduce the risks of thousands—if not tens of thousands—of endpoints and simplify the way you manage it all. Your organization is experiencing a growing need to enable a totally mobile workforce…but how?
Many are implementing a software-defined enterprise (SDE) and digital workspaces. Digital workspaces provide a single place for you to manage your resources, as well as a single place for your users to find the apps, data and desktops they need no matter where they work.
Although everyone agrees on what you need, it’s harder to know how to get there. Various solution providers promise to help your company build a digital workspace, but how do you choose the one worth the time and budget you’ll invest?
This whitepaper, Five Important Buying Criteria to Enable a Totally Mobile Workforce, discusses the essential capabilities to look for when building your digital workspace solution. For a quick overview of these features, see below.
5 Important Buying Criteria to Enable a Totally Mobile Workforce
1. Consumer Simple Experience, Seamless User Interface
Employees want a simple, easy-to-use digital workspace: the same password at home and work, the same apps on their desktop and phone, apps they can download or access without a call to IT and personalized customization options. In IT, you need a way to support these requests for ease of use and customization without overwhelming your team or letting user changes affect core infrastructure. Make sure your digital workspace solution supports features like single sign-on, native-device integration and isolation of user customizations.
2. Enterprise App Store
Enterprise app stores take cues from highly successful consumer app stores, gathering all your company’s apps and services into one easy-to-find place. Enterprise app stores empower users, letting them download and access the apps they need without making calls to your help desk. Good enterprise app stores also simplify IT management by allowing automated app provisioning, detailed authentication policies, workflows for app licensing and automated auditing and reporting of app usage.
3. Ensuring Secure Access
Not every user takes security seriously. Even users that do care about security may unknowingly leave endpoints unprotected as they access work apps and data on unlocked mobile devices, compromised home computers or unsecured wireless networks. Good digital workspace solutions take advantage of current and upcoming integration points provided by OS developers to ensure the safety of corporate data. In addition, good solutions should take advantage of the safety offered by virtualized networks and micro-segmentation. Secure digital workspaces provide many kinds of multi-factor authentication (including methods invisible to end users), including detailed security policies that allow you to choose how much control IT has over user devices.
4. Agnostic Platform with Broad Ecosystem
After implementing a digital workspace, you may decide you want to add new systems and features. Some solutions, however, suffer from vendor lock-in: your solution only works (or only works well) with other systems sold by that same vendor. You can avoid this problem by choosing a solution that plays nicely with multiple other vendors. To ensure you have an open solution, make sure your digital workspace has support for multiple authentication standards (e.g. Microsoft Active Directory, Kerberos, RSA SecureID, RSA Adaptive Authentication and Certificate User Authentication Models) and various network gateways (e.g. F5 and Citrix application delivery controllers).
5. Software-Defined Enterprise
IT departments are being asked to do more. Users want more apps on more devices in more places. Though these trends seem unsustainable, many IT experts see a way forward: the software-defined enterprise (SDE). SDE brings together your company’s server, network, storage and end-user computing into one common framework. IT can deploy SDE on premises, in the cloud or as a combination (hybrid) that virtualizes network and storage across cloud and on-premises in much the same way that companies already virtualize physical servers.
The SDE allows you to provide IT-as-a-Service (IaaS), giving you the flexibility to meet current and future user demands while taking advantage of your investment on premises and the flexibility of the cloud. Make sure your organization is prepared for mobile workforce adoption by moving your infrastructure, end-user computing and management to a totally software-defined enterprise.
Selecting the Right Digital Workspace Provider
If your digital workspace provider meets all the requirements listed above, you’re well on your way to giving users the flexibility they want while ensuring and enjoying increased security, lower operating costs and easier management. To get an in-depth look at the requirements listed here, check out our digital workspace buyer’s guide.
New blog series! The Digital Workspace Checklist from industry analyst Ovum: