Last year, remote working became a necessity due to the outbreak of the COVID-19. Many organizations quickly discovered that shifting towards working from home isn’t nearly as simple as allowing employees to use their personal devices for work-related purposes.
That’s because not all employees own a computer capable of running the software they need to do their jobs. Even if they do, someone still needs to install the software and keep it updated, which can be a major challenge for smaller organizations with no in-house IT staff. Then there’s also the question of security and the negative impact of allowing sensitive business data to be spread across the personal computers of employees who may not always understand the cyber threats they face.
Fortunately, Microsoft has a solution that makes it not only painless but also cost-effective for organizations to embrace remote working, and its name is Windows Virtual Desktop. Let’s talk about what it does and the benefits it can provide to your remote organization.
What Is Windows Virtual Desktop?
In September 2019, Microsoft announced a global launch of Windows Virtual Desktop, an Azure-based system for virtualizing Windows operating systems.
Before, organizations interested in virtualized desktop environments had two choices: deploy a Windows Server Desktop experience or deploy a single session in Windows 10. The former approach compromises the end-user experience because most employees are not familiar with Microsoft’s server operating system, while the latter approach isn’t cost-effective due to poor utilization of virtualized resources.
Windows Virtual Desktop erases the friction between user experience and cost by providing the only service that delivers a multi-session Windows 10 experience across Windows, Android, Mac, iOS, and HTML 5 clients, allowing employees to securely work from anywhere using familiar tools.
Top 5 Benefits of Windows Virtual Desktop
Some of the benefits of Windows Virtual Desktop are common for all desktop-as-a-service (DaaS) offerings. However, there are also advantages that no other similar solution currently offers.
1. Quick and Easy Setup
Getting started with Windows Virtual Desktop is really simple since all you need is the appropriate license. If you’re currently subscribed to Microsoft 365 E3, E5, A3, A5, F3, Business Premium, or Windows E3, E5, A3, A5, then you’re covered.
Because Windows Virtual Desktop clients are available for Windows, Android, Mac, iOS, and the web, employees can conveniently connect to their cloud-based virtual desktop environments from just about any device. And because Windows Virtual Desktops are hosted on Azure, they can be accessed from anywhere and at any time.
2. Centralized Software Management
One of the most important benefits of Windows Virtual Desktop is that it centralizes software management and allows administrators to deploy virtualized environments in minutes to quickly scale your infrastructure based on your business needs.
Each and every employee has access to the same (latest) version of Windows and Office apps, and additional software can be installed and maintained across all virtual machines remotely and in bulk. When a problem occurs, it needs to be solved just once, which translates into less downtime and better productivity.
3. Enhanced Security
Instead of allowing sensitive business data to spread across employees’ personal devices, organizations using Windows Virtual Desktop can securely store them in Azure, leveraging Azure Firewall, Azure Security Center, Azure Sentinel, and Microsoft Defender ATP for end-to-end security from the endpoint to the applications.
Windows Virtual Desktop can also help your organization meet regulatory compliance standards thanks to its compliance certifications, which include ISO 27001, 27018 and 27701, PCI, FedRAMP High for Commercial, and HIPAA.
4. Improved Disaster Recovery
Even in 2021, many organizations still don’t have a disaster recovery plan, which is especially worrisome considering that the chance of data loss dramatically increases when employees start working from their homes, often relying on aging computers with hard drives that may fail at any moment.
Windows Virtual Desktop helps in this regard because it keeps all data stored in a centralized location, on highly reliable servers managed by world-class IT professionals. Backups of virtual machines can be handled using Azure Backup, Site Recovery, and snapshots, giving you plenty of options on how to keep your data safe.
5. Cost Savings
Windows Virtual Desktop is an extremely cost-effective virtualization solution because you can access it with your existing Windows and Microsoft 365 licenses and pay only for what you use. It’s also the only solution of its kind that lets you increase virtual machine utilization by providing multi-session functionality, enabling you to consolidate many individual users onto a single virtual machine.
Of course, just like all other desktop-as-a-service solutions, Windows Virtual Desktop eliminates the costs associated with purchasing and maintaining physical computers. Employees can instead get the full Windows 10 experience on just about any device, even if the device itself doesn’t have enough power to run Windows 10 smoothly.
How Do I Get Started?
Getting started with Windows Virtual Desktop is easy, especially if your organization pays for a Microsoft subscription. To take advantage of the benefits Windows Virtual Desktop can provide to your remote organization, schedule your no-obligation consultation now.