Hosted desktops are designed to make everyday business processes simpler and more efficient, this is a useful improvement for any type of business. Some key industries are detailed below:
8.1 New Businesses
The main reason that a small or start-up company would choose to implement a hosted desktop service is to keep costs low. As mentioned in the previous section, on-site servers are a significant upfront cost, and ongoing upkeep, maintenance, and the running energy costs would be cost-ineffective for smaller businesses. By using a hosted desktop service upfront server costs, and the need to hire on-site support staff would be eliminated as both are outsourced at a fixed monthly price from the hosted desktop provider.
Hosted virtual desktops also benefit newer businesses by allowing them to scale up or down the service during sustained periods of growth, or slower months. This removes the added pressure of getting new starters up-to-date with complicated business software, or paying for such software if staff leave.
Lastly, the accessibility of a hosted desktop suits the potential movement of a smaller organisation. There may not be a need to have a fixed premises for staff to work from with start-up companies, and hosted desktops mean staff can work from home, or at customer sites and still have access to all of their important business files at the click of a button. This also means staff have constant access to files if the business needs to relocate to bigger offices or a different geographical location.
8.2 Large Corporates
Large Corporates tend to have a significant number of employees, who all need to be able to communicate effectively and work collaboratively. By using a hosted desktop as a communications tool, larger companies can connect their staff with centrally stored business data. This means that working on team projects is easier as staff do not have to wait for their colleagues to share files stored on their personal devices.
Perhaps the biggest reason that a larger organisation would choose a hosted desktop service is data security. Larger companies have often spent decades building a reputation that has allowed them to grow as big as they have, this can all be tarnished by a data leak. Hosted desktops use data encryption technology and the most innovative protection protocols to ensure data is safe. Some providers will also store data in the UK, meaning that no matter where employee logs in in the world, the provider adheres to strict UK data protection laws to ensure data is safe.
8.3 Multi-site and Franchise
When a multi-site or franchise organisation implements a hosted virtual desktop, an initial benefit is a major reduction in costs. Rolling out servers at each site, and hiring support staff to maintain those servers would be an extremely high capital expense. Because providers usually offer support and centralised off-site server storage as standard, this typically high setup cost would be drastically reduced. Additionally, the outsourcing of support means that multi-site businesses choosing a hosted desktop would have access to an entire team of support staff. This would allow them to tap into the expertise of several people as opposed to the knowledge of one internal support technician, and allows employees to work towards business goals, as opposed to trying to fix IT issues.
Accessibility and mobility is a major benefit for companies operating from several sites. Staff all need to be able to access important files, and work together if need be. A hosted desktop, being utilised via an internet connection, means that employees can access their desktop and the files within at any office or location that the business operates in.
Security is a frequent concern for franchise organisations because staff will be required to move around, and the business can never be certain of what networks staff are connecting to, or where their crucial files are going. Hosted desktops use internet encryption and the latest innovative software to ensure that data is safe no matter where it goes. They often allow for certain files and folders to be locked down so that only certain sites or staff can have access to them.
Companies that employ an army of sales staff usually expect their office to be vacant whilst those staff are away at customer sites or at meetings. A hosted desktop service allows staff that work in the field to access business files on any of their devices, such as laptops, tablets, and mobile phones, removing the need for them to come back to the office at inconvenient times for paperwork.
Furthermore, most hosted desktop providers will offer tiered or partitioned storage plans ideal for companies with a lot of mobile workers. This means that a personal storage allowance would help staff with storing customer details, presentations, or quotes, and a larger shared storage allowance would be given for shared projects.
The healthcare industry, from small doctors’ surgeries to large multi-campus hospitals, has patient confidentiality at the heart of anything they do. It is for the purposes of data security then, that they may wish to use a hosted desktop service. Whether it be at various hospital buildings, or the homes of patients, a hosted desktop would allow medical staff to access their files from any device and at any location. Because staff may be connecting to unsecure networks, the secure technology used by virtual desktop providers protects data from unauthorised people, allowing them to lock down files so that internal data breaches cannot occur.
Additionally, medical staff can drastically reduce their paper trail, or even the need to carry heaps of paperwork around campus or to consultations at all with a hosted desktop. Doctors can simply log in at any computer and have instant access to their files, removing the need to move around site to access personal computers.
8.6 Professional Services
Companies that offer professional services, such as financial or legal, can benefit from hosted desktop software in several ways. Firstly, important industry-specific applications such as Sage, Digita, or IRIS for accountancy firms, can be migrated into the hosted desktop software, making normal working practices easier than ever, and conveniently all in one place. Most providers will also automatically update software and applications meaning that professional organisations can use the most up-to-date technology on their devices without having to consciously remember to upgrade manually.
Accountancy and law firms handle sensitive client information from day-to-day, if that data was breached or leaked in any way then it could be detrimental to a reputation that could have taken decades to build. Some hosted virtual desktop providers will store data in UK data centres, so data is near impossible to steal due to strict UK data protection laws before security measures are even brought into the equation.
The software used to protect data stored in hosted desktops is usually the most innovative, and is automatically updated to remain ahead of the latest data security threats. Important business files can also be locked down, so professional firms can grant files or folder access to solicitors or accountants, but keep office staff out to reduce the likelihood of breaches.
Charities will often require volunteers to work flexible hours and from various locations. Hosted desktops provide charities with an unprecedented level of accessibility to their files by letting them use business documents from anywhere in the world, and at any time on any of their personal devices.
The fact that charity workers will use personal devices can be a security concern in itself. Data saved insecurely on individual devices is at a much higher risk of theft than that stored on a hosted desktop because the files are not on the hard drive of the device.
Lastly, most hosted desktop providers will offer a discounted rate for charities, so the software can be cost effective for non-profit organisations. Additionally, the need to hire support staff that ensure business processes and devices run smoothly is removed with a hosted desktop, as charities will have access to the provider’s team of support personnel.