Implement Desktop Virtualization and Transition to Everything as a Service

From VDI to DaaS, desktop virtualization is back. Choose the right solution, then develop an implementation plan that balances user experience, infrastructure complexity, and total cost.

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Your Challenge

  • There isn’t necessarily one desktop virtualization deployment method for all; unique evaluation of each user-group for fit with each deployment method is required in order to deploy a solution that is right for your organization.
  • The push for businesses to be mobile is driving desktop virtualization adoption. As legacy PCs are reaching end of life, many businesses are looking for a solution that will support a mobile workforce.
  • Desktop virtualization options abound. VDI, DaaS, app virtualization? Each has strengths, drawbacks, and costs that should be considered. 

Our Advice

Critical Insight

  • Desktop virtualization technology has caught up to the dream. The last few hurdles are being overcome, and the value is higher than ever in a mobile, cloud-based world.
  • Focus on user experience. If the new user experience is not equal to or better than traditional desktops, the project will fail at the pilot stage.
  • The virtual desktop is only part of the device-agnostic workspace. A workspace that enables users from any device can involve desktop virtualization, but it’s only a piece of the puzzle.

Impact and Result

  • Establish and align your IT goals with the solution requirements. Successful desktop virtualization involves implementing a solution that fits with the organization’s vision, but equally important is implementing it at a reasonable total cost, which can only be accomplished by establishing and aligning the goals and solution requirements.
  • Follow Info-Tech’s process for implementing the right desktop virtualization solution to create a project plan that will help ensure that you not only choose the right solution but also implement it effectively.

Contributors

  • Christopher Bilbro, Systems Architect, Veterans United Home Loans
  • Tom Howarth, Infrastructure Architect, Cap Gemini
  • Andrej Golebiowski, Independent Citrix Consultant
  • Sean Ebeling, Manager of Infrastructure Architecture for Endpoint Engineering, Health Care Industry
  • Lucinda Davidson, VP, Login VSI
  • Scott Stanley, IT Manager, Calgary Public Library
  • Eric Pierson, IT Manager, City of Durango
  • Dan Salinas, VP Business Development, Lakeside Software
  • Steve Anderson, President/Consultant, The Anderson Network
  • Carlo Castagnino, IT Infrastructure Manager, Calgary Public Library
  • Ivan Sabados, Senior Project Manager, Region of Peel

Additional interviews were conducted but due to privacy and confidentiality requirements, they are not listed 


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Get to Action

  1. Launch the desktop virtualization project

    Assess the value and identify the organization’s fit with desktop virtualization to structure the implementation project.

  2. Analyze virtual desktop requirements and pilot the solution

    Gather and analyze desktop virtualization requirements, then pilot the solution.

  3. Plan the desktop virtualization implementation

    Plan the implementation based on evaluation of the pilot and a carefully crafted communication plan.

Guided Implementation icon Guided Implementation

This guided implementation is a nine call advisory process.

    Guided Implementation #1 - Launch your desktop virtualization project

  • Call #1: Identify drivers and goals

  • Call #2: Create the project plan

  • Call #3: Assess your user-groups & strategy

  • Guided Implementation #2 - Analyze requirements and pilot the solution

  • Call #1: Gather requirements

  • Call #2: Outline RFP & evaluate options

  • Call #3: Plan your pilot

  • Guided Implementation #3 - Plan your implementation

  • Call #1: Evaluate pilot results

  • Call #2: Create implementation rollout plan

  • Call #3: Monitor and communicate your DV solution to end users

Onsite Workshop

Module 1: Launch Your Desktop Virtualization Project

The Purpose

  • Identify the scope and objectives of the workshop.
  • Identify the drivers behind your desktop virtualization project.
  • Determine and prioritize the business, end-user, and IT project goals and success metrics.
  • Understand the needs of end users to create user-group profiles.
  • Explore which applications are critical to virtualize.
  • Develop a high-level budget based on the estimated cost to deliver desktop virtualization.
  • Understand the high level risks and how to mitigate them.

Key Benefits Achieved

  • Determine workshop scope.
  • Determine project resourcing.
  • Evaluate your current environment: infrastructure, project drivers, and opportunities for improvement.
  • Identify the goals and success metrics.
  • Detailed creation of user-group profiles.
  • Document the critical applications in your environment to virtualize.
  • Outline a high-level budget for your desktop virtualization project.
  • Create a list of risks and mitigation strategies for each.
  • Match the user-groups to the appropriate desktop virtualization delivery method.

Activities: Outputs:
1.1 Develop the scope and objectives of the workshop
1.2 Review the current state environment
1.3 Identify the drivers behind your desktop virtualization project
1.4 Determine the business, end-user, and IT project goals and success metrics
  • Completion of the first section of a project plan
1.5 Understand the needs of end-users through a user-group profile creation and analysis
  • Documented user-group profiles
1.6 Determine desktop virtualization delivery method fit with user-group profiles
1.7 Inventory and analyze critical applications to virtualize
1.8 Determine the high-level budget and total cost of ownership (TCO)
  • High-level budget and desktop virtualization appropriateness assessment
1.9 Assess the high level risks and strategies to mitigate them
  • Launched desktop virtualization implementation project

Module 2: Analyze Virtual Desktop Requirements and Plan to Pilot the Solution

The Purpose

  • Identify functional requirements for the organization’s desktop virtualization solution.
  • Determine technical requirements for the organization’s backup solution.
  • Assess the responses from vendors to determine which vendor is the best fit to pilot your solution.
  • Plan the pilot: select who will be in the test group and which applications will be supported.

Key Benefits Achieved

  • Documented functional requirements.
  • Documented technical requirements.
  • Identified the appropriate vendor to host the solution that best fits the organization’s requirements.
  • Developed a plan to conduct the pilot.

Activities: Outputs:
2.1 Develop technical and functional requirements
  • Completion of section 2 of the project plan
2.2 Test out the products in the market (PoC) to further refine requirements
  • Documented requirements for the future solution
2.3 Create the Request for Proposal (RFP)
  • Scoped RFP
2.4 Assess the responses from vendors to negotiate a service contract
2.5 Plan the pilot: select the test group and critical applications
  • Completed pilot plan
2.6 Draft an end-user satisfaction survey
  • Customized end-user satisfaction survey

Module 3: Plan Your Desktop Virtualization Implementation

The Purpose

  • Discuss the milestones and initiatives required to implement desktop virtualization.
  • Build a roadmap of initiatives mapped on a timeline.
  • Discuss best practices around an implementation plan.
  • Develop a communication plan.

Key Benefits Achieved

  • An action plan for implementing and communicating the desktop virtualization solution.
  • Creation of a roadmap of initiatives to implement desktop virtualization.

Activities: Outputs:
3.1 Brainstorm milestones and deliverables
3.2 List the project initiatives
3.3 Consolidate the initiatives into a project roadmap/timeline
  • Completed roadmap of initiatives to implement desktop virtualization
3.4 Discuss best practices around implementation
  • Completion of section 3 of the project plan
  • Implementation plan
3.5 Develop a communication plan
  • Communication plan

Workshop Icon Book Your Workshop

Onsite Workshops offer an easy way to accelerate your project. If you are unable to do the project yourself, and a Guided Implementation isn’t enough, we offer low-cost onsite delivery of our Project Workshops. We take you through every phase of your project and ensure that you have a road map in place to complete your project successfully.

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