On July 27th Google announced it will continue to keep up to 200,000 employees working remotely through July 2021. This announcement was quickly followed by other major corporations like American Express, Uber, and Airbnb who plan to implement similar extensions to their work from home policy. Navigating the coronavirus pandemic will influence how businesses structure their workforce throughout 2021.In some instances like REI, the shift towards a remote workforce will become a permanent aspect of their culture. They have announced their intention to sell their 8-acre main campus offices in Bellevue Washington.
Gartner analyst Brian Reed recently stated at the Gartner Security & Risk Summit, “Remote workforce security is the single greatest existential imperative for all organizations in the wake of COVID-19.” Remote workers are vulnerable to even more cyber threats versus onsite workers. Why? A few reasons. First, 56% of employees working remotely are currently using their personal computers — simply put they’re not operating within the secure infrastructure of their business. Second, 25% of work-from-home employees don’t know their device’s security protocols such as software patches and anti-virus updates. The rapid shift to work-from-home (WFH) has revealed security vulnerabilities within endpoints, VPNs, and conferencing software.
Our solution? A Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI). It’s a technology that takes a desktop operating system experience and delivers it from a central data center or cloud infrastructure. VDI will allow employees to use and interact with the operating system as if they were connected locally. How does that help you and your business? Below, we discuss four reasons why Sanity Solutions recommends VDI as a great solution right now and well into the future.
1. Successful long-term remote work environments
With COVID-19 cases on the rise and a vaccine still far out, work-from-home employees will likely continue to do so well into 2021 and beyond. Some companies like Twitter and Square have announced permanent work-from-home plans, citing numerous additional benefits like lower operational costs, eliminating commutes (less pollution as a result), and more flexibility for the workforce. VDI would allow remote work to continue long-term, affording employees a similar desktop experience without ongoing threats and costs associated with data breaches or additional training for employees.
2. Enhanced security
Because VDI environments are controlled from a data center, security updates can be implemented in a controlled manner. IT teams can deploy updates and configurations for all virtual desktops on a set of servers rather than manually updating in-office laptops and desktops that are connected locally. Another security benefit of VDI is the strict governance of data. The risks of stolen data can occur if a remote employee’s laptop or computer is taken. With the implementation of VDI, data can be kept within the confines of the data center. Policy based access will restrict data from being downloaded to a remote machine by keeping data in a read only format for organizations with strict compliance requirements.
3. Adaptable Work Environment
Another great benefit of a VDI environment is that it supports the simultaneous use of multiple applications, creating a mobile, web-based cloud experience. This creates a consistent and adaptable work environment across all remote devices. In other words, VDI seamlessly replicates the desktop experience that an employee enjoys while working on-premise. This helps maintain productivity instead of weighing employees down with things like accessing secure software, searching and saving links, re-entering all saved passwords, and re-downloading apps.
4. Reduced costs
VDI is server-based on-premise or as-a-service when cloud based. This means a small infrastructure footprint can accommodate a large workforce, who may need a varied array of performance demands. You can repurpose old, outdated PCs and use them as VDI endpoints. And since VDI can set your business up for long-term remote success, you can also reduce your overhead costs on things like:
- Rent or mortgage
- Utility bills
- Cleaning staff
- Catering costs, like coffee, snacks, and vending machines
- Lost productivity from meetings, desk talk, and office distractions
While VDI can cut costs in several beneficial ways, it’s important to remember to consider other, non-monetary costs it can’t necessarily fill, like team collaboration, in-person engagement, and overall company culture.
Ready to learn more? Sanity Solutions is here to help
With the remote workforce not seemingly going away any time soon, it’s time to consider a VDI for your business. It helps sustain a remote work environment while simultaneously protecting it — giving you more peace of mind. At Sanity Solutions, we work as an extension of your team to provide tailored security solutions and implementation plans — including a VDI. When you’re ready to take actionable steps to protect your business and employees, get in touch with our team. We’re standing by ready to help.