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You already know that with the right mindset and approach desktops can be turned into powerful business tools. The next question is, what sort of data should you gather?
Insights into virtual desktops serve two main purposes:
While these umbrella criteria make sense, it can be hard to imagine what those specific insights look like exactly. Here are five specific insights a success, impactful desktop virtualization solution should give you access to.
General knowledge about the overall health of your VDI is good, but getting to the micro level is more informative and helpful. For major impact, ensure you have the ability to dive deep into individual desktops and user environments.
This allows support teams to quickly and accurately pinpoint the root cause of issues, which saves time and allows users to return to productivity faster. Having the ability to look at individual users also gives business managers the ability to look for trends among the most productive employees. Are they using certain apps (or noticeably not using certain programs)? Do they multitask in a particularly productive way? Do they work at certain times of day? By having this information and identifying trends, business leaders can coach their entire team to be more productive.
This is one of the most basic measures for desktops, as it’s a major indicator of performance. By being able to monitor CPU usage within an environment and at the individual level, you can determine if the virtual desktop instance is optimally tuned per use case. In some cases, you may find that CPU is over provisioned, opening the discussion for optimization and potential cost savings.
Digging into this metric combined with individual user deep dives can also help teams determine if performance issues are caused by the virtual desktop or a user-created issue. For instance, is the employee trying to stream movies that are really the cause of the virtual desktop performance issues?
Applications aren’t always evaluated for effectiveness, efficiency and usefulness as often as they should be. This can result in applications going un- or underutilized, but still costing the company money in licensing fees and seats.
By monitoring application usage, you can see what apps end users actually use on a daily basis, which are most important to accomplishing goals and what apps need further evaluation for replacement or discontinuation. This information can also help you more accurately tune desktop resources to real world need and may even surface insights that drive employee productivity.
Active versus idle time insights allow companies to make sure their desktops and workforce is right sized. This is particularly important for organizations that have overlapping workforces that required slightly over provisioned desktop environments. Desktops that site idle for long periods of time after login may indicate that the changeover in staffing could be tighter.
It can also help organizations that deal with third party contractors who aren’t on site. By having insight into when their company-issued desktops are actively being used, organizations can judge staffing fit and even compare activity against billed hours of work.
For instance, one company using virtual desktop insights realized that its outsourced workforce was oversized. Using Active/Idle insights, the organization discovered that 100 of its 500 contracts were active for less than two hours a day. With this information they were able to reduce their outsourced workforce without negatively impacting productivity. Ongoing insights allows the company to also ensure the productivity of the remaining contracts meets expectations (and the hours the company is paying for).
Being able to continuously tune and optimize desktops, applications, resources and workforces helps organizations throughout the year, but when it comes to forecasting and making ongoing decisions, a larger picture is needed.
To take full advantage of the information from desktops (which are the portal to everything users do), organizations need a way to look at historical data to identify trends. By seeing when desktop usage ebbs and flows, staffing and on boarding adjustments can be made more accurately. By watching application trends over time, teams can make smarter decisions about future technology purchases. But you need access to this type of information.
With these insights on hand on demand, business leaders have real information based on their actual user environment. No more guessing, anecdotal decisions or succumbing to the loudest voice in the room. At the end of the day, reliable data is the loudest, truest voice.
Nov 08, 2018
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