Why Desktop Analytics and Configuration Manager should be on your technology roadmap

By Harry Reid

Part three in my series of blogs breaking down Microsoft Endpoint Manager (MEM) focusses on Desktop Analytics and Configuration Manager. These two elements of MEM go hand in hand and the following blog post will explore why these too should be given extensive consideration when deciding whether to place MEM on your technology roadmap for 2021 or beyond.

To properly explain why Desktop Analytics should be on your 2021 technology roadmap we first need to discuss Configuration Manager. Configuration Manager is an on-premises management solution which is used to manage desktops, servers, and laptops. Configuration manager can integrate with Microsoft Defender ATP, Azure Active Directory (AD) and Intune. This makes it essential when looking into mobile device management solutions for a remote workforce. It also ensures that your MDM solution is tied in with the rest of your technology estate.

It’s also important to note that Configuration Manager can be used to deploy apps, software updates, and operating systems. This is key when the end users are working remotely without the support of an on-site IT Team. Configuration Manager can also be used to monitor compliance in real time which is essential when your workforce is working remotely.

In addition to Configuration Manager, MEM also includes Desktop Analytics. Desktop Analytics provides your organisation with company insight and data intelligence ensuring that you can see real time information about your Windows clients. Desktop Analytics goes hand in hand with Windows Autopilot as it will allow you to accurately view and report on the estate while all your end users are working remotely.

Data Analytics combines data from your organization with data collected from millions of devices connected to the Microsoft cloud. It provides real time information on applications, security updates your Windows 10 devices. Desktop analytics also and pinpoints compatibility issues with drivers and applications. This real time reporting can be displayed in a number of ways using Power BI and can be crucial in displaying actionable data that would otherwise have been missed.

One of the most forward-thinking technological advancements over the last year and looking forward to 2021 is the emergence of Artificial Intelligence (AI). A bit of an ambiguous term, AI in its simplest is intelligence demonstrated by machines. Data Analytics will explore your data and automatically find patterns or trends. The tools will intuitively understand what your data means, and predict future outcomes using the data harvested from your M365 environment (it also integrates with third party software). The new AI capabilities which were initially implemented in Azure are now available in Power BI. This is also a huge bonus for many organisations as they require no code. This enables Power BI users to discover hidden insights and drive more strategic business outcomes.

With working from home being the ‘new normal’ in many cases, or at least with working from home becoming much more common, it has become more important than ever to be able to extract organizational data and display it in a fashion that will allow the business to make strategically beneficial decisions.

There is no doubt that configuration manager and desktop analytics enhance the value of Microsoft Endpoint Manager and make the case much stronger for including MEM in your 2021 technology roadmap. The ability to gather accurate data throughout your organisation and then provide meaningful actionable reports will allow your business to flourish in the new remote working world. It will allow the business to remain connected to the end users and make strategic decisions that will provide benefit.

If you are wondering whether Microsoft Endpoint Manager is right for you, there is a very easy way to find out! Core are currently offering free technology strategy workshops which you can access through our website enquiries. Our free Technology Strategy Workshop are currently being delivered remotely over Microsoft Teams and can be delivered in a variety of formats. To get your free customized workshop please visit our website and contact us through the enquiry page by using the code HRBLOG. Please also visit our website for more blogs, podcasts, reports, case studies and virtual events as we kickstart 2021 with a bang!

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