With its launch in 2009, Microsoft Windows 7 became one of the most adopted end-user operating systems since Windows XP. Shortly after its launch, companies started tweaking Windows 7 to accommodate the changing needs of their employees’ workplace habits. The result of those workplace changes is what we now call the digital workplace.
Today, the need for digital workplace solutions is increasing exponentially. Employees commonly use multiple devices to complete daily tasks, which often includes a combination of personal and company devices. On average, companies have 4.3 devices per user, which according to Gartner will translate to 21 billion connected devices by 2020.
The main takeaway from these trends, and the impending end of support for Windows 7, is the urgency for organizations to migrate to Windows 10, sooner rather than later. While upgrading from Windows 8 to Windows 10 is an easier process than moving from Windows 7 to Windows 10, both transitions require a comprehensive review of a company’s operational and business requirements, as well as an examination of the organization's vision for the future.
Choosing the right time to implement a company-wide infrastructure change is not an easy task. Two key elements in successfully migrating to Windows 10 are a strong understanding of the trends and a focus on the bigger picture with regards to the digital workplace.
Understand the Future
The traditional office, often associated with assigned desk space for every employee, is being replaced by the digital workplace — flexible working arrangements that include home and remote offices.This environment includes shared or public workstations for employees that travel to a local office. According to Deloitte, “flexible IT policies such as the ability to use technology to work from home or use social media play a major role in overall employee satisfaction and retention.”
Despite the fact that the digital workplace of the future depends on cloud IT services, changes exist on how that cloud technology will be used. Forrester predicts that cloud computing will advance from a simple, cost-effective storage option, to an enablement mechanism for fast delivery of innovative IT infrastructure solutions in a constantly evolving virtual working environment.
Focus on the Big Picture
A successful digital workplace requires multi-vendor compatibility. Windows 10, with Office 365, offers the same applications for Apple and Android devices, and provides security and cloud storage options to seamlessly support various hardware devices. With this platform, employees have the ability to start working on a document on their desktop PC and then continue working and collaborating from their tablets, phones and other personal devices. The following are Windows 10 features that are compliant across multiple platforms:
- The ability to separate business and personal applications easily on an employee’s personal device
- Access to virtual office assistant functions over multiple devices
- Project presentations from a cellular phone to a large screen, or access files in different formats compatible to their hardware host
- The ability to share files easily and securely for video conferencing
- Run and manage multiple desktops on one device
- Operate in tablet or touchscreen mode, or switch to desktop mode by adding a keyboard and mouse
The benefits of migrating to Windows 10 includes several factors that increase employee satisfaction. Many of these advancements can promote collaboration from any physical location, and provide a greater feeling of being more connected to the company.