While 2014 was the year of security concerns following the Windows XP migration (which saw nearly 30 percent of organizations still using the OS after its end-of-life), 2015 is shaping up to have a similar focus on security given the flurry of massive data breaches in recent months. IT security will continue to be top of mind for companies of all sizes.
Virtualization will be another major focus for 2015, as IT departments will need to embrace BYOPC and BYOD in a way that doesn’t jeopardize the organization’s security. While last year was a big year for the virtualization market, this sector is yet again poised for changes in 2015 as growing BYOD demand continues to push IT departments to evolve their positioning and policies to satisfy employees. Virtualization technology is finally beginning to reach its maturity, and we look forward to the launch of Windows 10 and further development of the virtualization software industry.
Drawing on his team’s expertise in IT efficiency, Ambareesh Kulkarni, VP, 1E Professional Services, highlights the seven critical considerations for IT professionals who are looking to optimize their operations in 2015 to ensure a secure and efficient enterprise.
Creating a Secure and Efficient Enterprise
Click through for seven critical priorities IT pros should consider for 2015, as identified by Ambareesh Kulkarni, VP, 1E Professional Services, 1E.
Trend #1: Security and OS migrations go hand-in-hand.
Organizations of all shapes and sizes will need to improve security measures. In 2015, Windows will release operating-system updates on a regular basis, but the average migration currently takes more than six months, so businesses could be at serious risk and exposed to security issues for long periods of time. To avoid this, organizations should consider automation via zero-touch methods that will cut down on desk-side visits and can help migrate as many as 30,000 PCs in just 30 days.
Trend #2: Demand for BYOD will shift to demand for BYOPC.
Employees are leading the next wave of bring your own device (BYOD): bring your own PC (BYOPC). This is spurred by their demand to use the PC of their choice, often a Mac. While the advent of BYOD was a revolution in the way that employees access corporate resources on their smartphones and tablets, for most users, these devices are purely consumption devices. For real work, users revert to using their PCs, and in most organizations, they will need to use Windows.
Throughout 2015, we will see consultants, marketing executives, product managers and other employees wanting to use their own computer. As this takes hold, companies will realize that they can save a small fortune by not providing computers for employees. According to research by Gartner, by 2017, half of the world’s companies will have a percentage of their employees individually provide devices for work.
Trend #3: The frequency of software audits will increase.
Audits have become a habit and solid revenue stream for software vendors, so organizations can expect to see them more frequently in 2015. To get ahead of these audits and effectively push back on vendors, companies will turn to data-driven IT initiatives that will help identify overspending in software licenses. By referencing the data available to them, companies will be able to use 2015 as a year to move from checkbook compliance (writing a check for each question of compliance) to smarter IT budget management.
Trend #4: Organizations will limit their control of employee-owned devices.
In 2015, we will start to see a widespread shift in organizations where they limit their control over employees’ personal devices to solely the corporate information and data on those devices. Currently, the majority of BYOD security solutions access everything that is on an employee’s personal cell phone or tablet – including pictures, applications and email – allowing them to completely wipe the device to protect corporate data if needed.
Crucial to the long-term success of BYOD, this shift will bring the ability for an organization’s IT department to solely monitor and control corporate data downloaded onto an employee’s device with no access to personal material on that device. With an organization’s access to employees’ personal devices limited to securing and wiping corporate data, BYOD will become increasingly popular.
This is a paramount shift that has been demanded by employees. A major indicator of the viability of this market need is demonstrated by the inclusion of enterprise data protection solutions, as in Windows 10. After the Windows 8 debacle, Microsoft has listened to its users and is implementing controls to secure corporate data individually from personal data on a user’s personal device.
Trend #5: IT systems will need to ‘plug-in’ to ‘play’ in enterprises more than ever.
Organizations will need to make sure they don’t create data and application silos by deploying technologies that can seamlessly integrate with existing and other IT systems. With fewer moving parts, there is less risk of failure, so organizations should integrate, rationalize and consolidate IT efforts where possible.
Trend #6: Companies will focus on eliminating servers.
Innovative tools now eliminate the need for 95 percent of servers from SCCM architectures by eliminating the need for site-specific distribution points. This approach to software distribution boosts efficiency further through the intelligent use of bandwidth throttling to ensure network capacity is utilized but business traffic is never compromised.
Trend #7: VDI growth will remain stagnant
Estimates vary, but compared with the 700 million or so enterprise PCs in the world, most analysts put the number of VDI users worldwide at anywhere between 10 to 15 million (or approximately 2 percent of the workforce).With such a low market penetration and the entrance of more affordable, flexible and secure virtualization solutions in 2014, the outlook for VDI in 2015 is bleak. While the market for VDI will likely not decrease, it is only positioned for small, incremental growth as companies are shifting their focus to mobility solutions to meet user demand. As the market moves toward a focus on mobile data and information management, we will continue to stray from total mobile device management, making VDI an even less attractive option for workers.