As organisations are increasingly adopting flexible working methods, their technology must also adapt to suit. Beyond just adopting solutions for communication, modern businesses need to keep their data secure and their employees safe from threat in a way that suits their budget and resources.
Microsoft’s Windows Virtual Desktop (WVD) has proven uniquely placed to cater to new methods of working. By providing employees with a cloud-based virtual machine, they can benefit from the same experience regardless of the device they are using. WVD enables IT teams to provide a secure desktop with sanctioned apps while ensuring data never travels outside of the business-controlled environment.
In the financial and healthcare sectors, WVD offers particular value. It allows business-critical applications and services to continue running regardless of the situation or environment. An Azure-hosted machine can run 24/7, 365 days a year without the on-site support required to prevent damaging downtime.
Businesses that subscribe to Microsoft 365 or Windows 10 can also greatly simplify and optimise licensing through WVD. Desktops for new or existing hires can be created at no extra charge and scale to meet hardware demands at the drop of a hat. A single virtual machine can host multiple sessions, further increasing cost efficiency.
During this uncertain business climate, the above advantages can be vital. That said, many organisations are intimidated by the setup process, regardless of their size or sector. Thankfully, a recent update to the software has made implementation of virtual desktops easier than before.
In April 2020, Microsoft announced a new deployment and management experience that sits directly within the Azure Portal, where all of your virtual desktops are managed. With the new experience, admins can deploy and manage desktops, apps, users, and diagnostics much more efficiently. While knowledge of Azure is still required to be able to run the system, the bar has lowered from expert level to intermediate knowledge.
Microsoft has also added capability to WVD to better suit flexible work environments. WVD now seamlessly incorporates Microsoft Teams, a huge draw for many businesses that use Teams and have considered virtual desktops. The camera and audio functionality on personal devices can now be easily linked to the cloud-based desktop without the traditional latency pitfalls.
While enabling app access through WVD is important, so is ensuring those apps stay secure and compliant. Recent WVD developments mean that admin users can now store metadata within a specific Azure region or reduce attack surface through reverse connect technology. Additional features include support for static or dynamic conditional access policies and the ability to mandate multi-factor authentication.
Unfortunately, while the new Windows Virtual Desktop portal makes it faster to get to a usable state, there’s no denying that WVD set-up takes time and effort. Getting virtual desktops running smoothly with unique combinations of collaboration and industry software can be tedious. We can provide a helping hand with the set-up and relieve you of the ‘heavy lifting’ so that you can focus on what you do best. Contact us here to get some initial advice.