Because of their size, margins, and competition with larger organizations, small enterprises have a lot to gain from cloud-based scale and extensibility. This is why so many successful small enterprises are often early (and successful) adopters of new technologies that empower their business and allow the core workforce to focus on the fundamentals of the business.
Small enterprises rely heavily on BYOD to keep their workforces optimally productive (and therefore competitive), and this means that they need easy to use and powerful management, as well as protection. These management and protection solutions also need to avoid being a major line item on the budget since a small company’s resources need to go a lot of other places besides infrastructure maintenance. The infrastructure expenditures that are made need to not just be easy to use but ready to use quickly (preferably in an hour or less). This is one of the reasons why I believe so strongly that SaaS offerings are the perfect solution for small organizations. There are no up-front infrastructure costs and no heavy setup and configuration. Right now we’re seeing broad adoption of our Intune management service in this segment – with well over 10,000 unique small organizations subscribed and actively using Intune to manage PCs and mobile devices.
In a small enterprise, lost time and money can be disproportionately damaging to the bottom line, and this means that small organizations need their workforce to be able to consistently connect and stay productive no matter where they go, no matter which device they use. These organizations also can’t afford downtime anywhere in their infrastructure – whether that’s the result of a disaster or the time spent updating the software when new device/platform updates are available.
Everything in the last two paragraphs is proactively addressed with the Enterprise Mobility Suite. Any organization currently using Office 365 already has access to many of the functionalities needed for a widespread mobility management solution due to the fact that Intune is built on top of Azure AD (just like O365). To see just how thoroughly you can tie together SCCM, Intune, AD, Azure AD, and Office read all the good news in this post from earlier in the Success with Enterprise Mobility series. Intune can be up and running in just an hour.
This means that small enterprises get the simplicity and efficiency they need by having a single solution for MDM and PC management. It’s a solution that’s powerful, fast, seamless, and thorough.
Whenever I travel to speak at conferences or visit our offices around the world, I always set aside time to meet with customers in that region, and the feedback I get from the small enterprises I meet with is pretty unanimous:
- They benefit from our continuous innovation in our services (and how we quickly share this value in the form of updates).
- Their organizations and people keep getting more efficient because cloud-based solutions offer a rapid and continuous delivery of new value.
- They no longer need to deploy or maintain expense on-prem infrastructure.
- They can still get huge value from their existing investments in SCCM while also taking advantage of the cloud.
- Microsoft is seen as their preferred long-term partner.
To see for yourself the value I’ve described in this post, there are a couple great “Getting Started” resources you can check out right now to help set up a pilot of your own. This overview is a step-by-step guide to setting up Intune for device management, and this overview helps with the next step of configuring Intune for the needs or your organization, and how to automate device enrollment, identity management, etc. I really encourage everyone to take the time to test drive these tools and evaluate just what you can do with these things at your disposal.
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If you’re a small business, Intune offers a really big value. With Intune you can deploy and manage all of your organization’s personal and corporate devices – and, if you combine it with the SCCM deployment you already own, the value of that investment grows exponentially.
This is something that’s really unique and really exciting about the solutions Microsoft has put into the market. Our customers and partners benefit from layered protection (discussed here), enterprise-grade management, and control over everything going on within those apps and devices.
With this “Managed Everything” approach, enterprises of any size can empower their end-users to use the apps they love, and the IT team can implement the right controls to ensure that the data going to and from those devices is secure and within policy. This is a huge benefit, and, as I’ve said many times before, it’s one more reason it’s a great time to be in IT!