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Hybrid work is predicted to continue into 2024 as employers acknowledge the advantages of flexible work setups, with The 2023 HP Work Relationship Index1 finding that 72% of knowledge workers are willing to be paid less in favour of workplace flexibility, and 67% value a workplace that enables an easy and seamless transition between multiple work locations. Technology serves as a crucial enabler in this transformation, and today, the need to stay connected across multiple devices and locations is essential for remaining innovative, collaborative and productive in the workplace.
Given the evidence that the future of work is undeniably here and the transition to a more flexible, digital-first working environment is inevitable, how can organisations stay connected and relevant in this evolving work environment? One solution that organisations are leveraging is virtual desktops. This provides their hybrid workforce with increased flexibility, security, collaboration opportunities whilst also providing the organisation with cost-effectiveness, scalability, disaster recovery options, and centralised management. Virtual machines without question foster a more efficient, adaptable, and robust work setting.
What is Cloud PC
Windows 365, a subscription service from Microsoft, seamlessly generates a unique Windows virtual desktop, known as Cloud PC, for each user. This Cloud PC is dedicated to an individual user, functioning as their personal Windows device, yet provides a familiar experience to traditional Windows environments, with the ability for the physical device to be shared across multiple users. By fusing the robustness and security of Microsoft’s cloud with the convenience and straightforwardness of a PC, Cloud PC offers a personalised, seamless, secure and transformative user experience, providing a great way to enhance the connectivity of your team, boost productivity, and refresh workplace culture.
Five benefits of Cloud PC in the modern workplace
1. Anywhere access
With Cloud PC, you can access your desktop from anywhere, on any device, as long as you have an internet connection. Cloud PC offers a comprehensive Windows desktop experience, allowing users to access their familiar applications, settings, and files irrespective of the device they are using. This service supports a wide range of devices, including Windows PCs, Macs, iOS, and Android devices, providing seamless accessibility from any location.
2. Cost efficiency
Since Cloud PC is cloud-based, you don’t need to invest in high-end hardware. The predictable cost model of Cloud PC lowers upfront costs, improving your company’s cash flow and capital allocation. Since processing power and storage are centralised, employees can use less powerful individual devices, reducing hardware and software costs, along with ongoing maintenance expenses.
3. Increased flexibility and agility
Virtual desktops allow businesses to scale up or down their resources as needed, making it easier to adapt to changing business needs. With Cloud PC, scaling the virtual desktop infrastructure based on user demand is simple and efficient. This feature facilitates quick onboarding and offboarding of employees, making it an agile solution for growing or restructuring organisations.
4. Improved security and compliance
Cloud PC integrates robust security features such as multi-factor authentication, data encryption, and Microsoft Defender for Endpoint. Sensitive data and applications are centrally managed, enabling consistent security measures and access controls. This approach simplifies compliance auditing and ensures data protection aligns with industry regulations.
5. Centralised Management and control
With Cloud PC, you can manage your devices from a single console. With Microsoft Intune, central management of the Cloud PC environment becomes efficient and effective. IT administrators can deploy updates, security patches, and software installations from one central location, maintaining control over the entire desktop environment. In the event of a hardware failure, work can resume on alternative devices without significant downtime, ensuring business continuity.
Security in an increasingly hybrid future
Security is paramount in hybrid workplaces. However, how to protect sensitive data with people working remotely with varying endpoint security, patching inconsistencies, and unsecured public WiFi, can often challenge IT leaders. Powered by Microsoft 365, which is secure by design, Cloud PC will become the mainstay of secure hybrid workplaces. By storing data in the cloud, Cloud PC provides a safer and more productive experience for employees and assists in maintaining customer specific compliance requirements, all while having a comprehensive security framework in place. Compliance assurance is essential for financial services and government organisations that must meet regulatory requirements.
Implementing Cloud PC
Experteq offers a comprehensive Managed Cloud PC service, leveraging the power of Windows 365. This cloud-based virtual desktop solution provides secure access from any location, hosted in Microsoft Azure. It’s backed by modern management tools via Microsoft Intune and fortified with end-to-end security management through Microsoft Defender.
Experteq’s Managed Cloud PC service delivers a personalised desktop experience, granting users access to essential business applications and cutting-edge collaboration tools like the Microsoft 365 suite. This approach ensures seamless and efficient business operations, fostering productivity in a secure digital environment.
Businesses must continue to reimagine ways to remain relevant and productive. Employees need more avenues for connection and communication than ever before, and Microsoft has recognised this need. Microsoft aims to bridge the gap by offering a seamless user experience with Windows 365. Adopting Cloud PC can streamline your business operations, enhance security, and provide a seamless, personalised user experience. From evaluating technology needs to implementing innovative solutions like Cloud PC, we partner with our clients to create a modern workplace that fosters innovation, collaboration, and productivity.