We currently find ourselves at the onset of a new revolution in IT. The last revolution began at the end of the nineties and was the introduction of the sophisticated utilization of client/server infrastructure and the advent of Active Directory, the predominant Directory service since then.
Today, we find ourselves at the next truly revolutionary phase in the IT landscape, encompassing two current game changing trends, Client Mobility and Cloud technologies. Each, depending on the viewpoint of the observer, represents the potential for unlimited increase in productivity and the potential reaping of benefits in terms of cost savings in regards to licensing and hardware infrastructure costs. Nevertheless, as in all revolutions, there are those who grasp and cling to the current status quo, and those who bend to the prevailing wind of change and reap the benefits earlier on. One only has to look at the vast amounts that are being invested by the major technological players in Cloud Datacentres, Microsoft, Amazon, Google to name but a few, to realise that The Cloud – with access from everywhere and irrespective of device – is here and will be the new accepted face of IT.
Last year, Microsoft released the last ever version of their Windows operating System, Windows 10. There are two firsts that took place with the release of Windows 10: it was the first time that millions of users were offered a completely free upgrade to a new flagship operating system, and the first time that an operating system has been delivered by means of Windows update, without practically any user input required, an “in place upgrade” so to speak.
There are major advantages to be realised in terms of increase in productivity and decrease in costs. Microsoft has not disenfranchised traditional IT departments, but has empowered end users and given IT departments the means to control and safely administer their users. The employee is more at ease with his own device and the employer doesn’t need to invest in hardware for his employee. Worldwide 43% of users admit to using a private device for work purposes without informing their IT departments.1 This essentially means that these devices are not part of the IT strategy of their companies and represent quite a large risk in terms of Data security for their respective employers. The use of mobile devices from smartphones tablets and notebooks is changing the face of IT. With Windows 10, companies have at their disposal an operating system that already comes bundled with security tools that make BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) a viable and logical alternative to a strict and inflexible IT environment.
According to a study carried out by the hardware giant Dell 2, there are quite a number of distinct advantages to allowing BYOD in companies, they have discovered that:
- 67% of users access private software and apps during work
- That in companies that had a BYOD strategy have achieved a 38% optimization of business processes
- There was a 34% increase in flexibility and mobility of the employee
- A 31% Increased productivity and efficiency of the employee
- 28% Increased cooperation among employees
- 27% increased decision processes
Windows 10 has massively increased security mechanisms in terms of hardware security, Identity security, Data security and management tools to administer and control these technologies. Let’s take the scenario of Mobile device management with Windows 10 as being a “fait accompli” what tools are at my disposal to control it?