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DIGITAL WORKPLACE TRANSFORMATIONWHITEPAPERBy Brian Madden and Benny Tritsch | Version 1.5 | August 2016

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WHITEPAPER DIGITAL WORKPLACE TRANSFORMATION

CONTENT

1. TodaysSituation ................................................................................................................ 3

2. TheDigitalWorkplaceChallenge .................................................................................... 4

3. DesktopoftheFuture ......................................................................................................... 5

4. TheDigitalWorkplaceinDifferentEnterpriseMarkets ............................................ 7

5. BenefitsofTransformingtheWorkplace ...................................................................... 9

6. FiveStepstoTransformyourWorkplaces .................................................................. 10

7. OpportunityandRiskAnalysis ...................................................................................... 11

8. FinalThoughts .................................................................................................................. 13

AuthorsandContact ................................................................................................................... 14

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WHITEPAPER DIGITAL WORKPLACE TRANSFORMATION

TODAyS SITuATION

Theres lots of talk these days about the digital workplace. While there are many different views of what that actually means, most agree that many job roles are changing quickly and that IT is struggling to keep up. In large enterprises, the digital workplace is centered around the enter-prise desktop. This poses a challenge since while the digital workplace is changing quickly, the enterprise desktop is changing slowly. Sure, we see smartphone and tablet use in enterprises skyrocket, and even enterprise workers make heavy use of native mobile apps and web apps. But these new types of apps are somewhat separate from the old desktops that enterprises are built around. (In fact the enterprise desktop hasnt really changed in the past 20 years!)

In the past year or two, weve started to see the pressure from the digital workplace transformation to change the enterprise desktop, even in markets that have been traditionally considered slow or conservative. Its our belief (as well lay out in this paper), that there are several root causes for the advent of a faster rate of change for the enterprise desktop.

First is that a growing number of enterprises (across a wide range of market segments) are demanding more flexible and cooperative work-styles in order to stay competitive. (Both with the products they offer and their ability to attract and retain employees.) Much of this is primarily driven as a response to disruptive strategies from new players in their market segments.

Second, modern context-aware work scenarios require workers to seam-lessly switch back and forth from mobile devices to large and interactive multi-screen setups, with new scenarios (augmented reality, etc.) around the corner. The digital workplace is about using the right form factor at the right time not simply switching to smartphones and tablets and new apps.

Third, collaboration between enterprise users across different office locations, time zones and geographies is not an option anymore. Today, its a mandatory success factor for many business cases, even in small and medium-size enterprises. Synchronizing users workflows with unified communications, conferencing, collaborative document editing, enterprise file sharing, screen and video sharing, instant messaging, shared calendars and smart email filters is not an exception anymore. It is clearly an integral cornerstone of the modern digital workplace.

Were also seeing technological advancements which are not traditionally associated with enterprise IT starting to affect the enterprise workplace. For example, artificial intelligence and machine learning are increasingly supporting the human decision processes (and, as a consequence, changing users workstyles). Natural machine interaction based on gesture and voice recognition has become a reality (again, even in the enterprise). Connected devices with a myriad of sensors and actors also known as Internet of Things (IoT) allow enterprises to create brand new use cases and business models that have not been possible before. Combining machine-collected and telemetry data with user-created data is leading to a growing relevance of big data processing, analytics, and visualization requiring massive centralized compute resources (cloud services) to handle the sheer amount of such data.

And finally, enterprise IT workers have grown accustomed to the rich user experiences of consumer apps and gadgets, meaning theyre less willing to accept poor user experiences in the enterprise than ever before.

The challenge for IT is that this is all happening against a backdrop of the perceived constant decline of conventional Windows applications (increasingly referred to as CWAs by analysts). We are undoubtedly in the middle of an IT revolution. All this raises the legitimate question as to whether the Windows desktop and conventional Windows applications will continue to be the preferred digital workplace. From an enterprise IT perspective, this is the key question that must be honestly answered when planning the next digital workplace generation.

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WHITEPAPER DIGITAL WORKPLACE TRANSFORMATION

ThE DIGITAL WORKPLACE ChALLENGE

Almost everyone with enterprise IT experience agrees that conventional Windows applications will not go away anytime soon. But with those appli-cations almost universally viewed as legacy, how does enterprise IT deal with this? There have been many attempts to modernize conventional Windows applications over the past few decades. For example, attempts have been made create tools which rewrite conventional Windows applications into more modern formats (native mobile, HTML5, Java, etc.). There are also various techniques to remote conventional Windows applications and desktops to modern devices and remove the dependency of Windows on users devices. Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI), Remote Desktop Session Host (RDSH, formerly known as Terminal Servers) and Desktop as a Service (DaaS) are the commonly used terms here.

More recently, technologies such as app refactoring (also called Rapid Mobile App Development RMAD) have striven to twist and squeeze the user interface of conventional Windows applications running in data-centers onto the smaller touch-based screens of mobile devices.

But while each of these technologies has its niche uses, none has emerged as the silver bullet enterprises need to solve the evolution of the conventional Windows desktop and power the digital workplace transformation. The reason for this (which we find that many enterprises dont fully appreciate) is that conventional Windows desktops and applications have been in place for decades. They are deeply ingrained in enterprise workflows and for years have just worked. Enterprises have evolved around the features and capabilities of these conventional apps, meaning that new-style replacement apps that dont 100 % replicate the features and workflows of conventional apps will not be able to fully replace them.

Conventional Windows applications in the enterprise are also highly co-dependent on each other. (App A pulls reports from App B, using a report generator from App C, sending to a printer from App D, etc.)

The enterprise Windows desktop is really like a Rube Goldberg machine, which is popular term in the US describing an apparatus that was built to perform a simple task in a complicated fashion, generally including a chain reaction. Pulling just a single element out of such an apparatus (e.g. migrating or modernizing a Windows application) isnt really possible. This means that conventional Windows applications and desktops are extremely difficult to migrate away from. This is not necessarily a bad thing, however, keeping conventional Windows applications and desktops just because theyre so ingrained is not necessarily a good thing!

A lot of the new advanced technologies (machine learning, AI, sensors, gesture and voice recognition, etc.) do not apply to conventional Windows applications. Plus, as new versions of Windows keep coming out each seemingly focusing less on the conventional apps means that its getting harder and harder for IT to keep all of their conventional Windows applications running smoothly. (Just look at how difficult it was for enter-prises to migrate from Windows XP to Windows 7, and now that theyre there, Windows 10 is around the corner and the process has to be repeated again!)

The other downside to keeping conventional Windows applications is that it can be difficult to add new functionality to them. Many of these apps are commercial apps whose developers have their own roadmaps and visions which may or may not match what a particular enterprise needs. And new requirements tend to be amorphous it needs to work on mobile which is not a simple feature that an app developer can just add to an application.

That said, enterprises can still find value figuring out how to modernize conventional Windows desktops and apps, combined with new app types (native mobile, HTML5), devices (phones and tablets), and cloud services (storage, authentication, collaboration) as well describe in the remainder of this paper.

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WHITEPAPER DIGITAL WORKPLACE TRANSFORMATION

DESKTOP OF ThE FuTuRE

An often-repeated mantra about the Windows desktop is, Its all about the apps, stupid. Theres still a lot of truth in that, but in enterprise desktop environments, weve learned that applications dont live in isolation (unlike apps do on smartphones). Conventional Windows applications must be embedded in a Windows desktop OS which provides a runtime and communication environment that allows for intuitive user navigation, system management, automation, and seamless inter-process communi-cation. Most enterprise workflows rely on different line-of-business applications being able to talk to each other, so in essence, the enterprise Windows desktop becomes a container for a collection of connected applications while providing the best possible user experience. Even newer concepts like personas for different users (or groups of users) are mapped back to the Windows desktop metaphor.

When referring to the enterprise desktop of the future, many people (and some industry analysts) talk about how the desktop is dead or the keyboard is dead (or even that Windows is dead). Certainly were seeing this with gadget-oriented consumers in using non-enterprise apps. But when it comes to sitting down at a desk and doing real focused work, users still prefer to use devices with keyboards, mice, and large screens (or multiple screens). The reality is that its impossible to replicate this experience on a mobile touch-based device.

Certainly some of this is due to the fact that mobile apps have only been around for a few years versus a few decades for desktop apps so it makes sense that mobile apps are not as mature and dont have as many features as their desktop counterparts. Also, as weve eluded previously, mobile apps tend to run in isolated containers and dont have the rich cross-app integration as conventional Windows applications made possible by the Windows desktop. Finally, sitting down and focusing on an app requires a desk and a large screen the exact opposite of what mobile devices are designed for.

So we dont see mobile devices (both smartphones and tablets) replacing their desktop counterparts, rather, we see them augmenting desktops. Its all about the right tool for the right job. Use your desktop when youre at your desk. Use your tablet when youre in a meeting. Use your phone when youre in the field. But this is easier said than done. Since conventional Windows applications are based on decades-old technology which run on different hardware and different OSes, written in different languages, its

not really possible to compile a mobile version of a conventional Windows application. (Look how long it took Microsoft to release Office for iOS and Android. They had to write that from scratch.)

Some vendors and analysts have suggested that using Enterprise Mobility Management (EMM) is the solution to this certainly its possible to provision mobile apps based on existing Active Directory users and groups but the actual apps that go on mobile devices are wholly separate from the conventional Windows applications that run on the enterprise desktop that enterprises are built around. Sure, some enterprise apps have native mobile versions (Office, collaboration, file sharing, some line of business apps), but those represent a small subset of the applications users need to completely do their jobs.

This means that in order to get real work done on the road, enterprise workers still rely on conventional Windows applications even if they want to access those apps from a mobile device. This further means that enterprises will be stuck with conventional Windows desktops as long as they have Windows applications critical to their business. In fact, it only takes a single critically important Windows application in an enterprise environment, to require that Windows desktop infrastructure be part of the digital workplace. This is referred to as the long tail, as shown in the picture below.

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We believe the historical digital workplace for enterprises is the conventional Windows desktop running conventional Windows applications. So any discussion of the digital workplace transformation in the enterprise context has to begin with a discussion about the desktop of the future.

#oftheWindowsAp

ps

ACCEPTANCE OF WEb / MObILE PLATFORMS

100 %

15 %

50 %

48 MILLION

WIndoWs

APPs

Longtail

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WHITEPAPER DIGITAL WORKPLACE TRANSFORMATION

So even though theres lots of talk about how good native mobile and HTML5 apps are in terms of security, usability, design, etc., with millions conventional Windows applications out there, enterprises cannot throw them away even if were living in a world of Windows Day Zero vulnerabilities and spear phishing attacks. That said, its certainly possible to modernize conventional Windows desktops and conventional Windows applications in a way that provides them to users as they want them while still supporting the needs of the business.

For example, desktop virtualization technologies such as VDI1), DaaS2), and RDSH3) can be used to both enhance the security of conventional Windows applications while also delivering them to users in more modern ways. All of these technologies mean that enterprises can run their conventional Windows...

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