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Windows 10: enabling the digital journey

  • Posted on July 29, 2015

After months of buzz, today marks the official launch date of Windows 10. But what does Windows 10 mean for enterprises trying to boost worker productivity and collaboration and enable the digital workplace. And why is it relevant now?

Windows 10 Will be a Game Changer for Businesses

Windows 10 is a huge release for Microsoft, you and your end-users, representing a fundamental shift in Microsoft’s new cloud-first mobile-first priorities. The new operating system is built in a modular fashion that lets you integrate with your existing cloud technologies such as Office 365 or Azure, while still protecting your existing on-premises investments and maintaining a secure environment easily with unified management tools.

The user experience is superior to Windows 8.1 with careful focus spent on balancing new features such as tablet mode and more useful gadget side-menu with old familiar ones like the Start Menu.  But it’s more than that- it’s designed from the ground up to be more secure and easier to use, to separate business from personal data, and let users enable themselves in a more mobile and cloud fashion.

It’s also generally a lot faster than Windows 7, is designed to be compatible with over 90% of your existing Win7 applications and run on the same hardware you have today.

But, one of the key areas that is critical to understand is how much more secure Windows 10 is than previous versions. With enhanced auditing, hundreds more group policy objects, more security from boot time, tighter integration with UEFI (Unified Extensible Firmware Interface), SecureBoot boot loader authorization, and using DeviceGuard device lockdown, Windows Hello, and Windows Passport authentication processes, Windows 10 represents a much more secure platform.

Windows 10 also allows you to start enabling users’ productivity and freedom with less risk of user authentication issues, pass the hash authentication weakness attacks, and rooted devices. It means that in the current time of almost monthly public hacks that it’s easier to provide a platform for your users to collaborate with less risk, which is especially critical as more and more personal devices and data sources enter the workplace beyond the traditional walls.

Users can leverage Windows Hello facial recognition to addition to or in lieu of complex passwords to actually make logins easier and more secure. The security enhancements offer greater piece of mind for users and IT alike while reducing the impact of lost or stolen devices with more selective data wipe and tighter control over specific data in a mobile world.

Develop a Windows 10 Strategy to Meet Your Business Goals

You should seriously consider how Windows 10 fits into your overall workplace strategy and holistically how it would fit into your larger digital workplace that should enable not only your business but also your customers.

This is not just about migrating to a new operating system - it’s about taking the opportunity to see how new technologies like Windows 10 and their supporting cloud ecosystem including Azure and Enterprise Mobility Suite with InTune, Azure for AD, and RMS (Rights Management Services) can provide a better and more secure user experience while laying the groundwork for higher productivity.

You should review existing BYOD processes and self-support systems to determine how functional and secure they really are and consider evaluating your applications and web applications to validate their compatibility in the new world. The journey to becoming a high-performance digital workplace starts with a robust digital workplace platform but it’s critical that platform is stable and well founded.  Only then can your company be successful in rolling out a digital workplace platform.

Avanade is helping clients understand how Windows 10 and its new ecosystem can empower IT to be enabler through new self-service models and expanded device offerings. We have helped thousands of businesses realize increased productivity, faster innovation and reduced costs through the use of our extensive digital workplace infrastructure experience, proven methodologies, proprietary tools, and digital strategy studios.

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