Supporting BYOD: Is It Time for Your Help Desk to Draw the Line?

Supporting BYOD: Is It Time for Your Help Desk to Draw the Line?

One of the promises of BYOD is that it reduces help desk tickets, which allows IT to spend less time fixing problems and more time driving business value.

However, as more employees bring their own devices to work, IT departments are seeing an increase in tickets. These tickets – which cover everything from device compatibility to security – increase the burden on already overworked support teams.

Does this mean it’s time for your help desk to draw the line when it comes to supporting BYOD?

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7 Technologies That Make BYOD a Reality

seven technologies to enable a BYOD strategy

Let’s start with the obvious.

There is no silver bullet, one-size-fits-all checklist for creating the perfect Bring Your Own Device strategy. Every organization is completely different.

But it’s not as bad as it sounds. Many of the technologies necessary to support a strategy are probably already in your ecosystem. It’s just a matter of knowing what’s missing, and how to leverage what you’ve already got.

To give you a hand, we’ve assembled seven tools and technologies that make planning and executing your BYOD strategy a reality.

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Don’t put all your eggs in the Desktop Virtualization basket

It is extremely important to avoid the pitfall of an “all-or-nothing” approach when creating a desktop delivery strategy. You want to take the time to develop an in-depth view of diverse use-cases and chart out the best course of action for each one. This is the only way to ensure delivery of an optimal desktop experience to users across the entire organization.

A survey released by the Enterprise Management Associates in September found that companies with desktop virtualization projects in place or underway were almost all using more than one method of delivery, ranging from traditional terminal services to server-based applications accessed through a Web browser, according to Andi Mann, VP of research for the Boulder, Colo. consultancy. This CIO Magazine article explains the 5 most popular flavors of Desktop Virtualization and the advantages and disadvantages of each.

But how do you really know which method is right for which user? Or which users that Desktop Virtualization isn’t a fit for at all?

Specific user groups within your organization have unique requirements, each demanding their own approach and treatment. So it’s not a one-size-fits-all solution. Softchoice has created a step-by-step guide to help you understand the stages you need to go through when determining if Desktop Virtualization is truly the right fit for your organization. Each stage contains questions that you need to ask yourself WAY before moving towards the Proof of Concept stage that so many manufacturers want you to start with.  You can find this guide at along with a forum full of desktop virtualization advice from others that have already gone down the DV road.  We figure when it comes to big technology decisions, there’s always room for a second opinion. And a third, and a fourth… so we’re hoping that the value of collective wisdom will be better than any one expert.

The benefits of Desktop Virtualization are many. With most of the computing happening in the data center you get greater performance, easier manageability, tighter security and lower operating costs. But,it is not a cure all. You need to take a methodical approach when assessing how it will work in your unique environment. For us, desktop virtualization provides an opportunity to help clients effectively navigate a ‘high-risk high-reward’ proposition – and we take that responsibility very seriously. OK, not that seriously…check out the below fun video that we put together on the topic.


Desktop virtualization: look before you leap

At a recent Softchoice-hosted conference in Toronto, customers turned up in droves to learn about one thing – the virtual desktop.

If the popularity of this event signals one thing it’s that interest in virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) has reached a tipping point. And for good reason. A look at the average desktop environment will tell you why so many are giving serious consideration to this shift in computing.

A recent Softchoice study of over 900,000 PCs paints a startling picture: in the average corporate environment 38 percent of system warranties have expired. That number will climb to 54 percent within six months suggesting PC refresh cycles have been stretched to their limit. On the software side, 98 percent are still running Windows XP – an OS about to celebrate its 10th anniversary.

Simply put, companies are at a crossroads. Today, there are more choices for how to deliver the desktop to end users– from upgrading to Windows 7 and replacing aging fat clients, to combining application virtualization with some local computing power, to deploying VDI or, more realistically, a combination of all three. The question is no longer “Should I refresh my infrastructure,” but “How?” [Read more…]