Virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) solutions are critical to advancing today’s hybrid workplace. However, pulling together the right IT professionals and vendors to create and manage a productive, transparent, simple, and secure system can be a challenge. Having a blueprint that can guide you on how to deliver a seamless virtual desktop experience is a good place to start.
Like all projects, it’s important to start by articulating exactly what your company is trying to accomplish with its VDI solution. It is crucial that you determine, and then clearly convey, what your business needs to be successful. Knowing how your organization uses tools day to day, during busy times of year, at home, while travelling, and in the office, is the most important part of the planning phase. Do you want to connect an existing remote workforce with a more secure and reliable solution or build such a team from scratch? Are you trying to find ways to reduce TCO, minimize risk to the organization, or offload or partner with an organization with experience managing regulatory and compliance tasks? Or are you trying to design a system that can manage a bring-your-own-device (BYOD) business model where employees can be easily scaled up and down throughout the year?
Although these solutions can help you with all those goals, it’s important to understand your primary objectives before designing an internal system or selecting a Desktop-as-a-Service (DaaS) partner.
Select Internal or Hosted VDI
Once you have established your goals, the next step is to determine whether you want to create an internally managed solution through your data center or opt for a hosted solution through a third-party, cloud-based provider.
Managing the virtual desktop infrastructure solution through an internal data center gives you more physical control and access to your hardware and network fabric but also requires a significant initial and ongoing investment. You’ll need to purchase and maintain not only all the software, operating systems, servers, other network equipment, and applications, but also be able to timely and effectively address ongoing developments for each of these layers to your VDI solution.
Outsourcing your solution to a cloud-based partner usually means a subscription-based pricing package based on the number of users as well as desired service levels. Your partner is then responsible for all the day-to-day management, maintenance, troubleshooting, and knowledge-gathering efforts.
How to Choose a Partner
If you opt for a hosted VDI solution, be sure you do your due diligence in selecting the right partner. After all, you’ll be turning over a key part of your business operations to this third-party company, and you’ll want to be confident that the organization you choose can deliver a seamless virtual desktop experience. Here are some things to look for:
- Dedicated expertise. Take a look at your potential partners’ track records. Find a partner that has the expertise to help you integrate, improve, solidify, and secure your essential workplace tools.
- Unified solution. Select a partner that can integrate contact center, collaboration, and desktop productivity tools, and dedicated server hosting into one browser-based solution.
- Strong partnerships. No solution can deliver everything you need. You’ll want a vendor that has established partnerships with industry-leading platforms like Microsoft, Cisco, Citrix, and VMware. A solution should enhance and optimize the products of these major tech players.
- Staff qualifications. The partner should provide experienced, highly skilled individuals that align with the know-how and responsiveness that your IT team needs to keep your enterprise running smoothly.
Key Components of a Seamless Virtual Desktop
Regardless of whether you’ll be establishing a virtual desktop infrastructure solution through an internal data center or with a DaaS partner, you want to include the following components to deliver a seamless virtual desktop experience to your team.
- Create a seamless interface. To maximize your employees’ productivity, you’ll want to make the user experience simple, seamless, and intuitive. That means you don’t want your team to need to log in and out of multiple systems to complete their work. Be sure to integrate workplace tools within a browser interface to make them perform simply and seamlessly.
- Centralize management. One of the key advantages of these solutions is to centralize the operating systems, applications, and software that needs to be used by a wide range of employees. Be sure you also centralize the management of the network, vendors, and IT staff with a cross-category approach.
- Integrate best-of-breed tools. Your solution should be able to harness the power and stability of industry-standard collaboration and communications solutions. You’ll need to be able to successfully integrate them with enterprise-level communications features.
- Establish business continuity. Create true business continuity across internal and external touchpoints so that employees, customers, contractors, and management can more easily work together productively.
Reap the Benefits
Once your organization has adopted a virtual desktop infrastructure solution, it’s time to reap the benefits that a seamless virtual desktop environment delivers.
First and foremost, you’ll discover that a VDI solution means a better work environment for your employees, which leads to a better experience for their customers. In a world where the hybrid workforce is here to stay, this solution helps companies stay organized around people, not buildings and technology.
Second, it’s clear that the pace of technological developments, as well as the growing competitiveness of most markets, will continue to accelerate, leaving the future open to new tools and solutions. With the right VDI choice, you’ll be able to manage the integration of these tools, regardless of which ones are involved or later developed.
Finally, the right solution simply makes life easier. A DaaS provider can ease the pressure on your IT staff by delivering the services you need and freeing up your IT team to focus on higher-level priorities instead of day-to-day maintenance or chasing multiple vendors. A VDI should also make life easier for all your remote employees who want access to the latest tools and data that they need to perform their jobs when and where they want. Providing this benefit through a virtual desktop infrastructure solution means happier, more productive team members who are more likely to remain loyal to your organization. In this day and age when top talent comes at a premium and is often in short supply, acquiring and holding on to high-performing employees turns into a significant competitive advantage.
Evolve IP is designed to support and advance today’s hybrid workplace. We partner with the world’s biggest tech companies to bring together their unified communications, collaboration, voice, virtual desktop, and contact center tools into a single, secure solution, fine-tuned for the hybrid workforce. By seamlessly integrating these disparate systems from leaders like Microsoft, Cisco, Citrix, and VMware, and filling in the gaps, we improve both productivity and security, increasing uptime to make the future of work better for everyone. Contact Evolve IP today to learn more about VDI and DaaS.