A Migration Doesn’t End Until Worker Productivity is in Full Swing

shutterstock_271392632Tips To Getting Every User Productive on Windows 10, Faster

As Windows 10’s availability hit its year mark, enterprises seem to be feeling the pressure to get migration plans moving. It’s not surprising that organizations are using their Windows 7 migration as a benchmark, and in most cases, their main goal is improvement. For some, it’s the bar is set high in order to make amends for rather painful projects the last time around. I know of one enterprise that hit so many challenges and roadblocks that they report their last migration took more than three years, and the business wasn’t happy. Another large banking institution estimates that they spent 500 days of man hours on migrating user settings alone. And we’ve also heard companies dedicating an estimated 4 hours per user on preparing for their last OS migration.

For IT teams, these lengthy, delayed projects translate into long hours, skyrocketing service desk ticket volumes and frustration for their team. And for workers, these can result in hits on performance, productivity and the ability to get their jobs done.

It’s not hard to imagine why IT teams feel the pressure to demonstrate substantial improvement during this migration. But it does beg to question, do IT and the business measure these migration projects the same way? What do they consider as the beginning and, more importantly, the end of a major OS upgrade?

At RES, we strongly believe that the worker’s perspective should be at the center of any IT project, OS migrations included. Because of that, we propose that a migration is not complete until every single user in an organization is running in full productivity mode in their new OS. That means a seamless experience, no pending service desk tickets and no lost time trying to re-create their previous Windows setup.

This may sound like a lofty goal, but the reality is that with the right approach, IT can drastically improve the user experience of a migration. They can do this through:

  • Centralizing user settings and configurations, eliminating the disruption that’s typically placed on users when major hardware of infrastructure changes take place. With a digital workspace model that controls and manages user settings, data, personalization and more centrally, IT can instantly apply the configurations that help users be productive to new environments, minimizing the negative impact of migrations on the workforce and allowing them to benefit faster from new OS improvements. The log in from day one and can be just as productive, even if their environment looks different.
  • Predicting any new needs workers may have in their latest operating system, and delivering on those app, services or policies ahead of time.
  • For example, if members of a certain department still need to rely on an application that runs in a legacy version of Internet Explorer that’s not standard on Win 10, it’s important to make that browser automatically available within the user’s workspace, or offer an easy self-service option. By addressing user needs ahead of time using centralized policies and automated service delivery, IT can avoid user frustration and service desk tickets.
  • Considering any nuances to the new operating system that could confuse workers and introducing them in a user-friendly manner.
  • For example, Windows 10 will introduce a newly designed Start Menu. Why not provide the most relevant apps and items based on user groups to ease their familiarity into the new look and feel? By managing the Start Menu centrally, you can give users as much or as little flexibility as they need to be productive. So instead of trying to navigate the new OS, they have front and center access to the apps they need from the first time they log in.
  • Leveraging self-service to empower users as they dive into their new OS, so they can take productivity into their own hands.If you’re unsure if apps or services are being used or necessary by particular user groups, why not make them readily available via self-service to save on licensing costs without hindering them from getting their work done? Also consider the possibility of self-paced migrations or updates, so that workers can time these needed improvements with their working schedule and limit poorly timed disruptions. Look for opportunities to introduce self-service where you users can feel they have easy and immediate access to apps and services of their choosing. This will enhance their experience with the new operating system and allow them to feel more control over their computing experience.

At the end of the day, enterprise-scale projects like OS migrations will inevitably hit obstacles and challenges will arise unexpectedly. However, if the goal of a migration is centred around the time to user productivity rather than the technology changes taking place, IT puts itself in the position to deliver a migration that better supports business expectations.

Is user productivity the linchpin of your migration planning?


Author, Lorena Crowley, Director, Product Marketing, RES

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