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User virtualisation: Transforming organisations and aligning IT goals with business needs

This article was originally published on Technology.Info.
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It's no secret that the majority of IT teams in large organisations today are being challenged to deliver greater performance and a better user experience while working with reduced resources and budgets. At the same time, IT is also responsible for major, and incredibly time consuming, projects such as desktop management and migration. User virtualisation is a technology which has a significant role to play in helping an organisation transform and modernise themselves, and this is a trend that is set to grow.

Virtualisation has developed in recent years in response to the increasing trend of user-centric thinking, which calls for IT to put the end user at the heart of everything they do. Virtualisation allows IT managers to manage a set of user settings instead of each individual device, and helps businesses to expand and chase new opportunities more efficiently. It separates user settings - such as application usage permissions - from the system, thereby allowing individuals to choose the device and operating platform that suits them, instead of the application settings forcing the device choice on them. By allowing flexibility and easy desktop management, businesses enable their employees to work more efficiently and allow their business to grow.

Virtualisation also enables cost efficiency, through smart working, desktop virtualisation and time savings with employees. This allows the business to be more efficient and help it achieve its goals in a more resourceful way. It also means that time poor IT managers only need manage a single layer of an individual's digital existence, instead of an exploding number of devices and applications, with millions of potential user configurations.

These factors help IT managers achieve their goals, as virtualisation technologies can have a huge role in helping an organisation to transform and modernise itself. But for it to work, IT must help the business to ask the right questions and make sure it gets what it is looking for – without losing focus on the individual.

Because of the rapid proliferation of mobile devices, IT management has fundamentally changed and forced IT departments to rethink how they manage the end-point. Furthermore, IT has had to completely restructure how it manages and controls the end-user as well. More and more enterprises are turning to virtualisation as a solution to rising IT costs and security concerns, combined with user demands for a personalised desktop experience and the ability to work from anywhere, at any time, from any device.

In terms of the future, the end-point environment will continue to evolve and user management will become even more important. Aside from the fact that virtualisation and cloud projects will continue to increase, there will be even more emphasis on the user layer. The growth in mobile devices used in a given environment will play a role in that. Better infrastructure management, increased user visibility, and more control over the devices will help organisations align their IT goals with the needs of the business.