- Managed DaaS
- Happy End Users
Despite the rise of remote working and employee preferences for using their own devices, 99% of organizations issue company-owned laptops and desktops, according to a recent survey by Spiceworks.
This means that organizations also have to maintain, and eventually replace, these endpoint devices. Spiceworks dove into this topic and the data suggests that many organizations aren’t as progressive as they could be when it comes to managing desktops – and that might be hurting the company overall.
Phones, tablets and other smaller devices might dominate our home lives, but in the corporate world desktops still reign supreme. Spiceworks found that desktops are the primary device used by 68% of employees and only 29% of organizations have employees primarily using laptops.
Organizations are pretty evenly split between buying higher end and lower end desktops and laptops, but in either case the devices today are expected to last at least five years. Seventy percent of organizations use desktops for five or more years before a refresh and nearly a quarter rely on desktops for seven or more years. Laptops don’t last quite as long, with 48% of organizations relying on the 5-year lifespan and less than 10% using laptops for seven or more years.
With companies relying on the same devices for half a decade or more, it’s perhaps not surprising that the number one reason for replacement when it does happen is hardware failure (84%). Despite the fast pace of technology today, end of support concerns and compatibility issues only account for 50% and 45% of replacement drivers, respectively.
While companies like to prolong the lifespan of laptops and desktops for financial reasons, waiting too long can have negative impacts.
If device support ends or operating system updates are no longer compatible with the endpoint, the organization (and all its data) faces increased security risk. Organizations may also find that critical software and applications can no longer be updated or will not work on the endpoint, creating both a productivity issue and a potential security risk (depending on the application).
Older equipment can also take a toll on employee morale and productivity. If applications don’t function correctly or the endpoint runs slow, employees will become frustrated and cannot get as much work done. Sixty percent of IT professionals think that older hardware leads to lower employee productivity. The issue as a whole can, in some cases, even drive employees away from an organization. Spiceworks found that “59% of IT pros believe older devices cause employees to feel negatively about their employer.”
While it may seem like there’s no escaping the hardware refresh cycle, companies can get creative with the endpoints they provision.
Plan Around Use Cases
Assess your use cases to determine the type of machine that’s best for each situation. For instance, customer support teams won’t need the same computing power and resources as a development team, so why would you give both teams the same endpoint. By carefully evaluating different users and their needs, companies can potentially save money by not investing in over-provisioned devices. You may even find that more affordable thin or zero clients will work for some use cases.
Odds are that even if you’ve issued company-devices, employees are still using personal devices for work purposes – a smartphone to check email, a home computer to work on the weekends, etc. If this culture is already forming, the company may be able to take advantage of it by offering an opt-in BYOD program. Rather than replacing endpoints during a refresh cycle, the organization can instead implement virtual desktops that allow the organization to maintain security, compliance, control and compatibility while allowing employees to use their personal endpoint of choice.
While desktop virtualization may not seem cheaper than buying new endpoints, over time and with an in depth cost-benefit analysis, it can often lead to major savings.
Prolong the Life of Existing Endpoints
While using desktops or laptops that are no longer compatible with operating system and security updates is a bad idea, many organizations do so because the endpoints seem otherwise fine and usable. If this is the case in your organization, consider converting your existing hardware into secure, usable thin clients.
Conversion options like Dizzion’s zLlink solution help companies avoid costly hardware replacements and allow them to continue using the desktops and laptops that are already on hand. By using the endpoint as a thin client accessing a virtual desktop, the device’s native computing power and update compatibility become non-issues.