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Launching the Next Generation of Desktop Management

Microsoft Managed Desktop Service with IT Lab

    The Challenges of Traditional IT 

    Are your office-based people equipped to do their best work, and do your remote workers and road warriors enjoy parity with them? Does your IT team have time to focus on value-added activities?

    Many organisations are hindered by ageing, poorly performing desktops and dated technologies. The negative impact on their workforce has far-reaching consequences, such as reduced productivity and even talent retention. Besieged IT teams burn time on maintenance and updates, and cybersecurity is an ever-prevalent concern. Seven Business Signals that Mean it's Time for Change

    At IT Lab, we believe a modern desktop estate should be easy to run, secure and scalable. The Microsoft Managed Desktop (MMD) delivers unrivalled user-experiences and releases IT teams from the bind of support. MMD is ideal if your organisation is:

    • Stuck in the legacy operating system trap and looking for a fast way forward.
    • Concerned about cybersecurity; perhaps you’ve already been breached by a phishing email.
    • Feeling the effects of an ageing, sub-par desktop estate.
    • Struggling to support the demands of your remote workers and road warriors.
    • Taking too long to set up new users and issue their devices.
    • Experiencing a high number of IT support tickets, which is impacting efficiency and morale.

    Sounds familiar? Follow the stories of two very different worlds: a traditional IT department and a contemporary one. How do new start Joe's experiences compare when he gets a new laptop? The Journey of a New User Device - IT in the Traditional and Modern Worlds

    So what if

    Your people could work from any place at any time and enjoy the best software and hardware experience? What could they achieve with Microsoft’s latest productivity and collaboration tools always at their fingertips? What could your IT pros deliver if freed from the grind of backend maintenance and software updates? A new modern desktop service has arrived, guaranteeing premium support for your organisation in a secure, evergreen, environment. 

    What You Get with Microsoft Managed Desktop: An Overview

    Delight Users and Free Up IT


    The Microsoft Managed Desktop delivers a complete and secure desktop management service through modern devices. It combines Office 365 ProPlus and Windows 10 and even deploys your custom line-of-business applications – all from the cloud.

    For a quick tour, catch A Beginner's Guide to Microsoft Managed Desktop and read the experiences of a new user.  

    With the latest hardware and software technologies at their disposal, your users are empowered to do their best work. Meanwhile, your IT team can focus on value-added activities.  As one of only five approved Microsoft Managed Desktop partners in the world, IT Lab’s service includes our round-the-clock IT support for your end-users and operational support for your IT pros.

    Microsoft focuses on keeping you current: not only do your users start with current software - they stay that way. For an optimum experience, the service is delivered via a growing list of specified devices.

    Resolve Your Legacy Headaches with Microsoft Managed Desktop

    With Windows 7, Windows Server 2008 R2 and other Microsoft products going end of life or end of support in 2020, what’s your plan to modernise in time? If you have old technology that’s ready for  replacement - or if many of your devices are still on Windows 7 - leveraging Microsoft Managed Desktop is a fast and effective way to get current.

    Catch our blog – Microsoft End of Support – What You Need to Know, where we talk more widely about addressing legacy issues.

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    You're Always Up-to-Date with Microsoft

    Microsoft Managed Desktop keeps your approved devices up-to-date with the latest versions of Windows 10 Enterprise edition, Office 365 ProPlus, and Microsoft security software. Patch planning and management are a thing of the past!

    Monthly quality updates and semi-annual updates are done for you. In-place upgrades preserve settings, data and user apps during updates.

    All your endpoints are connected to modern, cloud-based infrastructure, keeping Office, Windows, drivers, firmware and Microsoft Store for Business applications current. Windows updates won’t break your line-of-business applications (LOB); we’ll manage your LOB updates safely with Desktop App Assure.

    Your Quick Tour of the Microsoft Managed Desktop

    Alongside IT support to your user-base and operational support for your IT pros, with this comprehensive service you will:

    Keep Your Users and Devices Secure

    Stay safe with device security monitoring and remediation services. Features supported by the Microsoft Managed Desktop service include:

    • Windows Hello Biometrics-based technology enabling Windows 10 users to authenticate secure access to their devices through facial recognition, a fingerprint or iris scanning.
    • BitLocker Data encryption protecting your data in the event of a lost or stolen device.
    • SecureBoot Ensuring your devices boot using only software that is trusted by the OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer) in line with security standards developed by members of the PC industry.
    • Virtualisation-based security (VBS). A ‘virtual secure mode’ for hosting security solutions and affording increased protection, in line with Microsoft best practices.

    Keep Your Users and Devices Current

    Benefit from a cohesive update management strategy and avoid updates knocking over other applications. For a seamless and secure Office experience, updates for Windows 10 and Office 365 ProPlus apps happen automatically. We can manage your line of business upgrades, so you’ll never need to worry about the potential side effects again.

    Enjoy Support for Enterprise Grade Features

    These include Cortana – Microsoft’s digital assistant helping your workforce get things done, analytical data on device and app usage, and device health analytics.

    Save Time for Your IT Team

    Microsoft Managed Desktop services include device configuration and simplified enrollment of new devices. You can also check the compatibility of your apps through Desktop App Assure.   

    As the  Microsoft Managed Desktop is a relatively new service, it’s understandable that there are misconceptions around what you do – and don’t – get.

    Our blog clears the mists and explains some of the logic behind this revolutionary managed service from Microsoft and IT Lab. To bring things to life, we’ve included some real-world scenarios of Microsoft Managed Desktop in action. Catch it here: Microsoft Managed Desktop - What Do You Actually Get? 

    Get Microsoft Managed Desktop Ready 

    Microsoft Managed Desktop Resources

    Your Modern Workplace Starts With Modern Devices

    You don't tend to keep your private mobile for five years, so why would you do the same with your corporate IT assets? In Undervaluing Device Management is Bad for BusinessBill Karagounis of Microsoft explains why sweating your old corporate devices is not good for productivity. 

    In the modern workplace, great user-experiences begin with devices that meet Microsoft enterprise support and security standards. To assure end-user satisfaction, Microsoft Managed Desktop supports only specific endpoints.  See the list of models here, which includes Dell and HP and Surface devices, and is growing all the time.

    We can take care of your device procurement and arrange financial leasing. If it helps to pay for your devices per user per month, you can.   

    New starters? No problem. We’ll give your people what they need right out of the box - quite literally. Typically, they’re up and running within 15 minutes, with zero-touch by your IT team. Windows 10 and Office 365 ProPlus are pre-installed, and Windows Autopilot automatically configures settings, security baselines, policies, productivity tools, and your custom line-of-business applications.

    Furthermore, modern devices are stateless, meaning your users’ data, configuration and settings, profile and identity reside in the cloud. If a device is damaged or lost, work continues seamlessly with a new one. 

    What's it like to use a Microsoft Managed Desktop? Catch our blog sharing a new user's thoughts: My Experience of Using Microsoft Managed Desktop


    What Else Do You Need to Get Started?

    As well as keeping things simple for your employees, the Microsoft Managed Desktop service is designed to make things straightforward for your IT team. Here are the core requirements and remember – our accredited team is ready to guide you and do any heavy lifting.

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    Microsoft licencing for your users – you’ll need Microsoft 365 E5 licenses or Microsoft 365 E3 licenses with the Microsoft 365 Security E5 add-on. For more advice, see Prerequisites for Microsoft Managed Desktop.
    LSArtboard 14ITL_PILLAR There’s a set of endpoints the Microsoft Managed Desktop service must reach. Connectivity to them is necessary. Network configuration for Microsoft Managed Desktop lists the proxy requirements, endpoints, and the allowed list of URLs.

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    Azure Active Directory (Azure AD) identity services – as the source of authority or synced to your on-premises Active Directory.
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    Then you need to migrate these services to their cloud equivalent:

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    Sync your files to OneDrive for Business for data backup and recovery.


    Enquire: Microsoft Managed Desktop Service

    How to Revolutionise the Management of Your Desktop Estate

    Our Condensed Guide to the Microsoft Managed Desktop Service sets out the guide to help you simplify and transform the management of your desktop estate. Our free eBook content includes discussions on topics such as:

    • The benefits of Microsoft Managed Desktop to your IT team and end users
    • The challenges of traditional IT
    • The signs that say you need Microsoft Managed Desktop
    • The radically different steps of device deployment in traditional and modern IT
    • A helicopter view of the Microsoft Managed Desktop
    • How Microsoft Managed Desktop reinforces your cybersecurity

    Download our guide and learn how you can Revolutionise the Management of Your Desktop Estate.


    MMD eBook mockup 1 with download button


    Let the Facts Speak for Themselves

    Let the Facts Speak for Themselves Infographic Stats on the Microsoft Managed Desktop

    1 & 4 A commissioned study conducted by Forrester Consulting. The Total Economic Impact™ of Windows 10 and Office 365 ProPlus with cloud-connected management. July 2018. 
    2 A commissioned study conducted by Forrester Consulting. The Total Economic Impact™ of Windows 10 and Office 365 ProPlus with cloud-connected management. July 2018. Base: 34 IT decision-makers using Windows 10, Office 365 ProPlus, and/or EMS.

    3 Juniper Research. “Cybercrime will cost businesses over $2 trillion by 2019.” Hampshire, UK. May 12, 2015
    5 A commissioned study conducted by Forrester Consulting. The Total Economic Impact™ Of Microsoft Windows Defender Advanced Threat Protection. July 2017

    Transform Your Cybersecurity

    Shrinking the Threat Protection Gap


    How quickly could you identify a breach attempt or security breach in your network? How rapidly could you respond? How many different bolt-on security vendors and applications are you running on top of your desktops today? How many tools are you juggling to secure and manage your pcs?

    Threat actors are always looking for new vulnerabilities they can exploit to blindside your organisation. To hackers, your data, user identities, intellectual property and financial accounts are their playground.  

    Determined and sophisticated cybercriminals must be met with greater determination and sophistication. Microsoft invests over $1 billion USD a year on security engineering and is named a leader by Gartner in its 2019 Endpoint Protection Platforms Magic Quadrant.

    Microsoft Managed Desktop: An Enabler for Security

    Your devices are protected 24/7/365 by dedicated experts and automated defences against current and emerging risks. Microsoft deploys battle-ready technologies to safeguard your data and managed endpoints, reducing the time gap between a new threat and a security patch.

    With roughly 90% of passwords proving to be hackable, the service includes biometric recognition with Windows Hello, affording front-door identity protection locked to the device.  

    You’ll have peace of mind with Windows Defender Antivirus protection built-in, alongside advanced threat protection (ATP) to rapidly detect and remediate serious threats: Microsoft Defender Advanced Threat Protection

    You can explore how the service protects your information, devices, network and identity and access management here: Security in Microsoft Managed Desktop.

    Your Streamlined, Cloud-Based Commodity Service

    The rate at which Microsoft releases new features across its product suite is tremendous, but it’s also dizzying. With Microsoft Managed Desktop, you no longer need to worry about keeping your favourite products up-to-date and missing out on the latest bells and whistles.

    Shrinking the Productivity Gap


    Delight your users with new Microsoft 365 features as soon as they’re available, instead of waiting for your IT team to prepare, test, deploy and troubleshoot system updates.  

    Accelerating Your Digital Transformation with Microsoft

    To thrive in this digital world, Microsoft had to become a powerhouse of innovation, speed and efficiency. Billions of dollars are year are pumped into product development, IP and security.

    Microsoft is the largest manager of devices on the planet with over 850 million Windows Ten monthly active devices. By combining its management capabilities with modern hardware and the Microsoft 365 suite, it has created a genuinely end-to-end, cloud-based reality.

    Because the modern desktop embraces native Microsoft enterprise products and tools, adopting new technologies is frictionless. Moreover, as the tech giant continuously evolves its people, IT and processes, you’re empowered to meet contemporary workplace challenges and future-proof your business. 

    Why Choose IT Lab as Your Microsoft Managed Desktop Partner?

    “Microsoft’s ultimate end-user service offering – the Microsoft Managed Desktop, brings the power of the cloud down to the hands of the user through a modern, secure, up-to-date, highly performant and actively managed desktop environment.”

        -  Dan Coleby, Director of Business Performance

    With IT Lab and IT Lab Group company Content and Code, you’ll encounter a confident, eminently qualified and service obsessed partner.

    Our team takes pride in offering insightful, independent advice and delivering services that exceed expectations.

    As one of only five approved Microsoft Managed Desktop partners in the world, we can help you realise your ambitions faster. And if you’re in the public sector, you can engage with us through the G-Cloud Framework.

    We’re already helping clients develop their business cases for the Microsoft Managed Desktop and evidence the ROI the service provides. We understand the underlying technology inside-out and believe the value of the service spans the following areas:

    IT Lab and Microsoft Managed Desktop – Delivering Value Across Your OrganisationModern Desktop Pillar Page Image

    Modern services replacing legacy hardware and software. By shifting the control of your users, identities and devices to the cloud, you’ll save on the associated hardware and software you’re running on-premise. Direct benefits are delivered through:
    1. Reduced infrastructure hardware, plus related internal management costs.
    2. Time savings for your IT team, as they’re freed from mundane tasks.
    3. Your IT pros are released to deliver value-added activities.   

    Your users will enjoy performance advantages, and new starters will get a fantastic onboarding experience.

    If you have multiple locations, you may have different types of connectivity (e.g. WAN or MPLS) between sites. With modern infrastructure, all you need is an internet connection. 

    IT Lab clients already benefiting from this service have said goodbye to System Centre Configuration Manager (SCCM) in favour of its cloud-based version – Microsoft Intune. Similarly, Azure Active Directory replaces an on-premise Active Directory.  Another client we help had an expensive VDI estate. We substantially reduced its size, resulting in significant  hardware and software savings.

    Services and Resources. By shifting the management of your desktop estate to the cloud with Microsoft’s Managed Desktop service, there will be things you no longer need to do or buy. Potential benefits include:

    • Savings in third-party services and hosting.
    • Your IT function will spend less time fretting about security.
    • The desktop is secure by default. Security is actively managed meaning your SOC team has a lot less to worry about.
    • User-training is simplified.
    • Remote support is straightforward.
    • Overhead and management time savings as things break less.
    • No more energy expended planning for upgrades.
    • Your support tickets will reduce.

    If you still have a large Windows 10 upgrade on the horizon, Microsoft Managed Desktop is your best accelerator for a Windows 10 roll-out and will migrate management to the cloud at the same time.

    Soft Benefits. Advantages include:

    • Greater user-productivity with contemporary productivity and collaboration tools.
    • High-performing modern devices extend battery life and boot up time is quicker. This isn’t just about the hardware: minimising the agents running on a device, and the background processes eat battery. A Microsoft Managed Desktop device will idle at 1% or 2% CPU usage.

    We build business cases for our clients; even if users only save 10 to 15 minutes a day, the result of a cumulative productivity increase is material.

    Risk Avoidance. Fundamentally, Microsoft’s advantage as the provider of the operating system means that the Microsoft Managed Desktop service will be better at managing your desktop security than your existing controls. The service:

    • Reduces the likelihood of a data breach and all its potential implications: regulatory fines, reputational damage, loss or interruption to services, and operational upheaval.
    • Simplifies compliance, business continuity and disaster recovery.
    • Maintains the uptime of services, minimising the business impact of downtime.
    • Lowers the risk around systems changes and upgrades. For example, passing ownership of patching Windows to Microsoft is safer than doing it yourself - software is less likely to break.  

    In one risk avoidance business case we produced, we estimated a client saving of £20 million a year as the chances of a cyber incident lowered by 17%.  

    Be among the first to free your people and revolutionise your workplace; enquire below. 

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    Microsoft Managed Desktop Resource Library


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