Digital Workspace: Preparing For The Next Technology Shift

by Poonam Mondal    Sep 29, 2016

VMware

Businesses of all sizes are creating a digital workspace, delivering anytime, anywhere access to all applications, services and resources across all devices including desktops, tablets and smartphones. The digital workspace is the defining model for end-user computing in the mobile cloud era. It securely delivers anytime, anywhere access to any application on any device. This new paradigm sees enterprises embracing the concept of a digital workspace, which in turn creates an environment of engagement between employees, partners and other stakeholders. In a recent conversation with CXO today, Ramesh Vantipalli, Director EUC – Systems Engineering, VMware shares how digital workspaces will continue to boom in the days to come.

What are current trends in the digital workspace? What are the opportunities in the adoption?

In the mobile cloud era, employees, devices, apps and data increasingly live beyond the physical walls of the workplace, the datacenter, or the network. Digital enterprises are struggling to deliver a unified digital workspace due to disjointed technology and teams. VMware defines digital workspace as the virtual environment that IT creates and delivers to end-users and the environment that end-users leverage for anytime, anywhere access to business critical applications and desktops using any device running on any platform (i.e. an IT outcome). A digital workspace can give IT a more efficient, simplified way of managing users, devices and applications. It can provide end-users with a consumer simple way to seamlessly access all business resources regardless of device type and provides line of business a secure and powerful platform on which to build and rebuild business processes that enable a more effective mobile workforce to compete in the market.

For years, businesses have struggled to address the proliferation of mobile devices, playing defence against employees with their own devices and customers with mobile-driven expectations. CIOs very often rank mobility at the top of their list of priorities, but mobility is not just transforming business – its transfixing business. While the potential for business transformation is huge, very few companies have begun leveraging mobility to its full potential. A recent survey of 1,200 customers conducted by VMware found that as of today only 17 percent of global companies have shifted a core business process to a mobile model.

Tell us more about the newly launched digital workspace? How it works and what are the benefits?

In the mobile cloud era, employees, devices, apps and data increasingly live beyond the physical walls of the workplace, the datacenter, or the network. Digital enterprises are struggling to deliver a unified digital workspace due to disjointed technology and teams. VMware defines digital workspace as the virtual environment that IT creates and delivers to end-users and the environment that end-users leverage for anytime, anywhere access to business critical applications and desktops using any device running on any platform (i.e. an IT outcome). A digital workspace can give IT a more efficient, simplified way of managing users, devices and applications. It can provide end-users with a consumer simple way to seamlessly access all business resources regardless of device type and provides line of business a secure and powerful platform on which to build and rebuild business processes that enable a more effective mobile workforce to compete in the market.

For years, businesses have struggled to address the proliferation of mobile devices, playing defence against employees with their own devices and customers with mobile-driven expectations. CIOs very often rank mobility at the top of their list of priorities, but mobility is not just transforming business – its transfixing business. While the potential for business transformation is huge, very few companies have begun leveraging mobility to its full potential. A recent survey of 1,000 customers conducted by VMware found that as of today only 17 percent of global companies have shifted a core business process to a mobile model.

VMware’s vision is to enable organizations to achieve new levels of business process transformation. The company’s strategy aims to free businesses from more than a decade of client-server focused IT designed to enable a limited number of productivity applications and deliver a more user- and application-centric experience for the enterprise.

What is your expectation through digital workspace?

A digital workspace can give IT a more efficient, simplified way of managing users, devices and applications. It can provide end-users with a consumer simple way to seamlessly access all business resources regardless of device type and provides line of business a secure and powerful platform on which to build and rebuild business processes that enable a more effective mobile workforce to compete in the market. The digital workspace is emerging as the new end-user computing platform, securely delivering anytime, anywhere access to all apps, services and resources across all devices.

In 4-5 years what are the latest technology do you think will take over in the digital ecosystem?

The digital workspace is the defining model for end-user computing in the mobile cloud era. Business is changing. Ownership models, mobile work styles, cloud computing and expectations of ever greater consumer style of computing within the enterprise have disrupted the traditional model for end-user computing. As users increasingly leverage a portfolio of heterogeneous devices and applications through wireless networks and unpredictable security environments, today’s mobile-cloud era is rapidly rendering the previously dominant client-server model obsolete. This technical and cultural evolution creates unique challenges for IT, while simultaneously generating new opportunities for businesses and their users.

According to Global Mobile Workforce Forecast, 2015-2020, the global mobile workforce is set to increase from 1.32 billion in 2014, to 1.75 billion in 2020.

Tell us about the market for Digital Workspace in India.

India as a market defines a lot of the latest trends globally when it comes to end user computing technology. This is because India has a large number of users who are working in a dynamic and demanding workplace. We have seen some of the largest number of use cases coming out of India for VMware, in fact it is the third fastest growing market for us globally. Hence, we are bullish about the digital workspace market in India and expect it to grow at a good pace in the coming year. 

What are the challenges in the business mobility program? How is VMware contributing to this space?

To understand the mobility market better, we surveyed nearly 1,200 organizations, globally, to probe their level of comfort, gauge how far they’ve come, and understand the obstacles that are holding them back. The survey yielded interesting insights which were compiled in VMware’s Business Mobility Report (BMR).

No surprise, security and data loss remain top concerns for organizations as they look at business mobility. Mobile and security are strongly connected in any IT conversation. Mobile email, applications and browsing have their own risks. Shifting revenue generation and business operations to mobile carries even greater risks, along with greater returns. In addition to this, end users are becoming increasingly concerned with securing their own privacy and how their personal information and actions may be exposed to their employer. Hence, trust in enterprise mobility management solutions is crucial for employees to utilize the software and gain access to business critical information.

To cite an example from our own portfolio, VMware AirWatch, an enterprise mobility management solution, is a simple yet scalable way to get business-critical data, email, applications and content onto users’ smartphones, tablets and computers in the most secure way. Before investing in a proposed application, it is important that employers assess the level of their workers’ trust in the application solution in order to download it to their personal devices and grant permissions for management. And in order to gain this trust, AirWatch puts user privacy first. Most recently at VMworld, EUC announced innovations to the digital workspace with new a unified endpoint management technology that combines enterprise mobility management with traditional PC lifecycle management for comprehensive Windows 10 support. Going forward, we have more innovations in the areas to manage and secure digital workplaces.