In the People at Work 2022: A Global Workforce View report by ADP, two thirds (64%) of the workforce surveyed responded suggesting they would consider looking for a new job if they were required to return to the office full time. The University of Limerick’s Research Insights into a New World of Work report showed that 73.8% of employees were informed a blended approach will continue into the future and a PwC study found 72% of Organizations Offer Hybrid Work Schedule. It is clear, remote work is here to stay. IT must now establish a strategy for how to best manage a hybrid workstyle and provide the best possible employee experience.
When many workers rushed to work from home, they were not equipped with the necessary tools to do their work. Unfortunately, organizations did not have the luxury of time to perfect hybrid or remote work solutions. They had to give their best effort and learn on the fly. For virtually every organization, a big obstacle to enabling people to suddenly work from home was their applications.
Those relying on virtual desktops instead of VPNs were the lucky ones. However, many organizations did provide support for a majority of their employees on these virtual desktops and were suddenly required to enable their entire workforce to utilize VDI and DaaS solutions. Those who had been installing applications locally onto virtual desktops and servers had to quickly provide applications that were not in their images or even available to the team responsible for managing the virtual desktops. It was chaos and everyone just did the best they could.
Now is the time to look at how best to manage applications to suit hybrid workstyles permanently. We believe we have the perfect solution: Cloudpager.
Cloudpager Conquers the Challenges of Application Management for Hybrid Workforces
Maximize Application Compatibility
Cloudpager is the first and only container management platform for Windows desktops. Cloudpager enables you to provision and manage applications to any Windows desktop, including published desktops running on Windows Server OS, physical endpoints, and virtual desktops. We integrate with the most widely used platforms in the enterprise, including Azure Virtual Desktop, Windows 365, Citrix Virtual Apps & Desktops, Amazon WorkSpaces, and more
Deploy to Any Windows Desktop, Anywhere
Not only does Cloudpager integrate to the most widely used platforms in enterprise, but it is perfect for consistently delivering applications to desktops running in different cloud platforms. From an intuitive, cloud-native web console you can rapidly provision applications to all desktops across your enterprise. That’s right, manage all your applications on physical endpoints and virtual desktops running across multiple cloud environments all from within a single pane of glass!
Instantly Modernize Application Management
Enterprise IT has been in desperate need for a change in how applications are packaged and deployed. Traditional MSI and Setup.exe installs can lead to failed installations, corrupted uninstalls, application conflicts, complete system crashes and more. Some organizations turned to App-V in the past but found it challenging. Microsoft now supports a container format called MSIX. MSIX does not currently work for all applications but has incredible potential. Containers like MSIX provide the ability to run applications self-contained on a Windows desktop removing the chances of conflicts, failed installations and corrupted uninstalls. Deploying applications in containers provides a better user experience.
While the successor to App-V is MSIX, not all applications can be packaged and deployed with it yet. In fact, at the time of writing this the compatibility rate for MSIX is lower than it was in App-V. Unfortunately, not a lot of vendors supply their applications in the MSIX format today. Thus, there is a need to bring forward some App-V packages while ensuring you can deploy and manage MSIX containers as more vendors embrace it for their applications.
Modernize All Your Applications Regardless of Their Original OS
Cloudpager also supports deploying Cloudpaging containers which have an unparalleled compatibility rate, making application packaging with Cloudpaging Studio relatively easy. Cloudpaging containers can help migrate legacy applications to modern Windows operating systems and even to migrate applications designed to be 1:1 to multi-session operating systems. Cloudpaging can package applications App-V or MSIX cannot, and be deployed with Cloudpager. This ensures all of your applications can be modernized and deployed from the cloud.
Utilize Flexible Application Deployment Options
Applications can be published for self-service access via a Storefront or automatically deployed to the Start Menu or desktop, providing IT with the flexibility to deliver applications in whichever manner is best for their users.
Software License Policy Enforcement and Offline Usage
Cloudpager enables administrators to automate license enforcement, allowing you to limit the number of concurrent sessions an application can be run in, limit the number of devices a user can access an application from, set an expiration date to automatically remove access on a certain day and time, and more.
With the upcoming Windows 365 Offline feature and the nature of laptop users going offline at times, you may want to consider whether some of your organization’s applications should
not be permitted for offline use. Cloudpager can require users to only use certain applications when online, while enabling IT to permit use of other applications offline as they deem appropriate.
This is extremely useful for employees who travel for work. The optimal scenario would be continuing to use their Cloud PC on flights or traveling between locations. Soon they will be able to, but your organization should think about what that means. Are you okay with losing line-of-sight on all your applications on those Cloud PCs? There will be some applications you don’t want to enable offline access for or need to set time constraints for how long they can be offline. Cloudpager policies can help you manage the offline usage of your applications as you see fit.
Report on Application Usage and Activity
Cloudpager reports provide comprehensive application utilization data giving administrators information to help determine whether an application can be retired due to it no longer being used, whether fewer licenses are required at renewal time, and more. Administrators can also check the level of usage an application received during the UAT phase to determine confidence levels for upcoming go-lives.
Cloudpager can help reduce the number of application-related incidents by enabling administrators to quickly roll back changes or remove applications at the individual desktop level. By the nature of managing containers, which are not as susceptible to application conflicts or corruption, applications do not require reboots during installation, making them much less intrusive and potentially damaging compared to traditional locally installed applications.
Hybrid workstyles are here to stay. Now is the time for IT to focus its long-term strategy to delivering the best employee experience possible whether they work in the office or remote. This requires a consistently great application experience over corporate networks and over the internet. Cloudpager offers the perfect solution for deploying applications to any Windows desktops, anywhere. It helps IT modernize application management with Azure Active Directory integration, quick seamless net-new deployments and updates, rapid roll backs and all the great features discussed in this article.
The future of work is hybrid. The future of application management on Windows relies on containers. Cloudpager is the key to truly modern application management for your hybrid workspaces.