Vernon Apperson

Empowering the Digital Workspace: How Corona-Norco Unified School District Does It

The award-winning Corona-Norco Unified School District serves more than 54,000 K-12 students from the California cities of Corona, Norco and Eastvale, as well as unincorporated parts of Riverside County. One of the 10 largest districts in the state, it employs approximately 5,000 people.

Like many public school districts, Corona-Norco has a goal to reduce capital expenses and technology costs overall for its schools to ensure equal access to technology. With costs rising and a small IT team challenged to drive all over a large, traffic-choked area to deliver services, the district faced a big choice when they decided to upgrade in-school computing: Buy more sophisticated and expensive hardware for each school, or take a different approach. They chose a suite of digital workspace solutions that make it simple and cost-effective to manage mobile devices, upgrade to Windows 10 and distribute and maintain apps using virtual desktops.

 

Digital Workspaces Put the Emphasis on Education, Not Patching

In 2012, the district started to roll out virtual desktops on zero clients at schools. Corona-Norco now supports 8,000 zero clients and around 5,000 virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) concurrent desktops—with a full-time staff of two. &#rsquo;We don&#rsquo;t see the support number changing dramatically as we significantly ramp up the number of devices,&#rdquo; said Brian Troudy, the district&#rsquo;s director of networking and infrastructure. Adding to the device count is the district&#rsquo;s embrace of the bring-your-own-device (BYOD) model for maximum flexibility and choice. VMware AirWatch and VMware Workspace ONE extend the district&#rsquo;s digital workspaces beyond classroom computers to tablets and laptops, allowing faculty, students and staff to access any app on any device at any time.

VMware end-user computing solutions have simplified application management and updates, including the district&#rsquo;s upgrade to Windows 10. With the ability to test and patch images &#rsquo;behind the scenes&#rdquo; from a central location, instead of sending IT staff to schools and taking computers out of service, operating system (OS) and app updates are easy to deploy. Said Troudy, &#rsquo;Using the Horizon suite, App Volumes, Thin App and UEM, we&#rsquo;re able to layer into a user’s connection the applications that they need based on certain criteria—the location, class that they&#rsquo;re enrolled in—and all of that can be done dynamically and automatically based on the integrations that we have with other business systems.&#rdquo; IT staff can now spend their efforts working one-on-one with their end users on effective use of technology instead of managing and maintaining the underlying technology.

Teacher Peter D&#rsquo;Agostino noted that he used to have to stay at school after hours and come in early to maintain and patch classroom computers. It could take weeks to get new software installed. Now with VMware Horizon VDI, apps for engineering, history, music production and many more topics run faster and more reliably. &#rsquo;I no longer have to spend time updating computers on my own, taking time away from students. Now I spend my time looking for ways for kids to learn better. It just changes the game.&#rdquo;

 

Money Saved on Technology Goes Back to Student Programs

The district estimates it&#rsquo;s saved $5 million on hardware so far, and more than $75,000 on energy costs alone, by switching to a VDI model. &#rsquo;We&#rsquo;re able to, with VMware technologies, deploy labs of computers to our students at a quarter of the cost,” said Troudy. &#rsquo;It&#rsquo;s also allowed us to keep the experience of the desktop that they&#rsquo;re using up to date and relevant. It&#rsquo;s a night-and-day experience for our students.&#rdquo;

&#rsquo;With VMware … we were able to provide end-user computing at a much lower cost than we did six or seven years ago. There&#rsquo;s nothing that makes me happier as a CIO than to be able to say, I get out of the way, and let the school do what they need to do to make sure the students receive the education they deserve.&#rdquo;
—Ben Odipo, CIO and Assistant Superintendent of Information Technology, Corona-Norco Unified School District

Related:

  • [Video] Western Carolina University Extends Digital Workspace Solutions Campus-Wide
  • VMware + Ellucian: Smart BYOD & Apps with VMware&#rsquo;s Secure Digital Backpack for Education
  • Empower the Digital Workspace: The VMware Customer Perspective

The post Empowering the Digital Workspace: How Corona-Norco Unified School District Does It appeared first on VMware End-User Computing Blog.

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Empower the Digital Workspace: The VMware Customer Perspective

At VMware, we believe that a digital workspace gives you the ultimate freedom to use any app on any device in any place. You should enjoy frictionless access to apps no matter where they reside, from legacy to RDSH and web-based apps, with single sign-on for simple access.

Attendees at our recent EUC Insights 2017 event did a great job of defining what a digital workspace means to them. VMware employees rely on digital workspaces every day—even when everything else goes wrong. Over the next few weeks, we will share stories of how some of our customers put digital workspaces into practice. These organizations are truly empowering people, from teachers to physicians to IT administrators, to succeed at digital transformation.

How Do VMware Customers Use Digital Workspaces?

Here are just a few of the use cases we are excited to talk about:

  • Mecklenburg County, N.C., is rolling out Windows 10 and Microsoft Office 365 in the cloud, with enterprise-grade security and simplified management.
  • Jefferson County, Colo., provides secure virtual desktops to its employees and for public computers that county residents use—with a non-persistent desktop, all data is erased when the session ends, keeping citizens&#rsquo; information secure.
  • Corona-Norco Unified School District (CNUSD) in California uses digital workspaces to deliver Windows 10 and the learning technology students and teachers need when they need it from any device, including bring-your-own-device (BYOD) mobility for maximum flexibility and choice. CNUSD also saves valuable funds that can be used for student services.

Stay Tuned!

Watch the EUC Blog in the coming weeks to learn more about how organizations like yours use solutions like VMware AirWatch, VMware Horizon and VMware Workspace ONE to empower their digital workspaces.

Want to get the latest digital workspace, mobility, desktop virtualization and enterprise apps news right in your inbox? Join our Friday “Top EUC News” club at the top of your screen.

Hear first hand how leading companies empower the digital workspace for transformation during VMworld. Register for the EUC Showcase keynote to hear their stories, dive into brand new innovations and much more. Seats are going fast, so register today!

The post Empower the Digital Workspace: The VMware Customer Perspective appeared first on VMware End-User Computing Blog.

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Mercy Innovates from the Data Center to the Patient Bedside

Mercy is an integrated healthcare organization with 43 hospitals and more than 700 physician practices and outpatient facilities, serving more than 3 million patients a year. Through technology, Mercy wants to be better partners with their patients, giving them more guidance and preventing problems before they happen.

Mercy received the 2016 HiMMS Nicholas E. Davies Award of Excellence for using health information technology to improve patient care and the bottom line. VMware helps Mercy innovate in healthcare from the data center to the patient&#rsquo;s bedside.

  • Mercy&#rsquo;s goal is to analyze data to provide better outcomes for patients – making sure they have the right product for the right patient at the right time - and also to keep that data secure with VMware NSX and VMware vRealize Automation.
  • Mercy is using the VMware vCloud Air partner network to provide general healthcare-class hosting
  • Mobile devices increase care in patients&#rsquo; homes, extending their clinical care team. Mercy also uses the tablet-based Mercy Bedside app, managed by VMware AirWatch, which patients and their families can use while in the hospital to ease the care process.

“The role that VMware has played … really is enabling the technology. Building these solutions is impossible without the ability to utilize technology as seamlessly as we use our stethoscopes.&#rdquo;
—Todd Stewart, Vice President of Clinical Integrated Solutions, Mercy

Learn more about innovative solutions for healthcare at vmware.com/solutions/industry/healthcare.

Because you liked this video:

  • VMware Horizon VDI Powers WCH’s Hospital of the Future
  • Case Study: Halton Healthcare Modernizes Data Centers & Expands with New Hospital
  • American Red Cross Uses VDI for Faster Disaster Relief

 

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STEM for All at UMass Lowell

The scientists of the future are embracing consumer-simple, enterprise-secure digital workspace solutions at UMass Lowell. With more than 17,750 students—and a strategic plan to increase enrollment to 20,000 over the next few years—this university is known for its educational initiatives in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM). Part of that mission is providing easier access to computationally complex and expensive STEM software packages.

What started as a simple need for more space on campus grew into an initiative that brought virtual desktops and simplified application access to students, faculty and staff. In 2013, the university needed to find a way to reclaim classroom space to teach its growing student body. The school was &#rsquo;bursting at the seams,&#rdquo; according to Steve Athanas, the school&#rsquo;s director of platforms and systems engineering.

&#rsquo;VDI, for us, started as a way to turn computer labs back into usable teaching space. But it turned out to be significantly more than that. Our VDI story is about fundamentally transforming the way we teach and the way we conduct business.&#rdquo;

To learn more about how UMass Lowell uses digital workspace solutions to simplify access to education, read the case study.

UMass Lowell Extends STEM Education with Digital Workspaces

Want to Calculate Fluid Dynamics on Your Phone at a Hockey Game?

UMass Lowell uses VMware Horizon for virtual desktops,VMware App Volumes to distribute applications and VMware User Environment Manager to maintain application settings across sessions. Through a portal called vLabs, UMass Lowell users can access university virtual desktops and apps from anywhere at any time, on any device.

According to Athanas, &#rsquo;Once students realized they were able to access their applications anytime and anywhere, it changed how they functioned as students.&#rdquo; Instead of having to log time in an on-campus computer lab, students could bring a mobile device with them and study whenever it&#rsquo;s convenient. &#rsquo;That&#rsquo;s really important because a huge percentage of our students have either full-time or part-time jobs as they&#rsquo;re achieving their education,&#rdquo; said Athanas.

&#rsquo;The way that VMware is simplifying app distribution is really huge. It means my team spends less time setting up and more time working with our ultimate customers, delivering value to the organization.&#rdquo;

Partnerships for Education

VMware technology partners are playing important roles in the UMass Lowell IT department and in campus academics. The school recently launched a high-performance Horizon cluster with virtual graphics processing units (GPUs) from NVIDIA. Computationally and graphics-intensive design and engineering programs now run on any student or faculty device that can run a Horizon desktop. The university has added additional NVIDIA GPU support to its base image to support the graphical look and feel of a Windows 10 deployment.

Athanas cited VMware partner StacksWare as a critical addition to his IT arsenal. StacksWare metrics for App Volumes deployments provide real-time, deep inspection of application usage.

&#rsquo;This software can tell me right now which users on campus are using which applications, where they’re using them from and how long they’re using them. I can roll all that up and make better decisions about software licenses for the campus. It&#rsquo;s been really transformative for us.&#rdquo;

From &#rsquo;It Works&#rdquo; to &#rsquo;Thank You&#rdquo;

Athanas cited a UMass Lowell study showing that 66 percent of students said that vLabs improved their academic success.

&#rsquo;You know you’re hitting the right mark when instead of users saying &#lsquo;It works,&#rsquo; or &#lsquo;It hasn’t had any problems,&#rsquo; they come up to you and say, &#lsquo;Thank you.&#rsquo; We’re now in a position where faculty and especially students say, &#lsquo;Thank you, this has saved me time, this has saved me effort, my job is easier, my academics are easier.&#rsquo; That’s transformative.&#rdquo;

The post STEM for All at UMass Lowell appeared first on VMware End-User Computing Blog.

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[Video] Western Carolina University Extends Digital Workspace Solutions Campus-Wide

Nestled in the mountain town of Cullowhee, Western Carolina University (WCU) is the westernmost school in the University of North Carolina system. From the residence hall to the science lab, the school is extending digital workspace solutions to all corners of the campus and beyond.

WCU was the first campus in the University of North Carolina system to require its students to bring a computer to school. Now its 10,800 students show up with a variety of devices, from desktop and laptop computers to tablets and smartphones. The University needed a way to provide consistent and easy-to-access resources to each student, no matter what kind of device they have or whether the student is on or off campus.

Single Sign-on, Simple Access

The University tied their existing student portal to VMware Workspace ONE using SAML and VMware Identity Manager. Now only one login is needed to access apps, from Microsoft Office 365 to specialized programs for academics. With Workspace ONE, users log in once, then they can launch any desktop, RDSH or Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) applications they have access to.

&#rsquo;The fact that we can consistently and conveniently offer all this software is a huge benefit to our community.&#rdquo;
— Mark Ellersick, Technology Support Analyst, Western Carolina University

Apps are distributed and customized with VMware App Volumes. App Volumes customizes desktops based on student profiles. When a student finishes a class, their access to apps for that class is withdrawn—saving money for WCU&#rsquo;s IT department.

Any App at Any Time

VMware Horizon provides nonpersistent virtual desktops for students. &#rsquo;The great thing about the technology is that students don&#rsquo;t notice it,&#rdquo; said Mark. &#rsquo;They walk into a lab, log in and do their work. When they walk out of that lab and go to their residence, or even to another town or state, they can access that same resource. Now the lab is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week.&#rdquo;

To access published apps, the WCU IT staff uses Horizon&#rsquo;s RDS Hosted Applications feature. If someone doesn&#rsquo;t need access to a full desktop (McGraw cites the University&#rsquo;s IT ticketing system, as an example) they simply authenticate to Horizon and then launch a published app, save files and use network resources from a remote RDSH server as if it were on their local device.

With VMware User Environment Manager, dynamic personalization management manages specific experiences around locations or user groups. For example, campus printers are made available based on users&#rsquo; locations, and UEM makes it easy to add or take away card-key access to electronic locks on campus.

High-Powered Graphics—Not Just for Engineering Class

WCU uses products from VMware partner NVIDIA for both academic and personal computing. NVIDIA GRID cards bring the power of the NVIDIA graphics processing unit (GPU) to Horizon virtual desktops, speeding graphics performance and rendering for applications such as 3D modeling and computer-aided design. To support all the streaming services and videos that students watch in their free time, the WCU IT team is also expanding NVIDIA cards to each host box they deploy.

Windows 10 Made Easy

WCU is finding that virtualization is a big help in getting their community acclimated to Windows 10 as the University begins to upgrade.

Patrick McGraw, virtualization and tier one engineer, said, &#rsquo;Some people are hesitant about adopting Windows 10 because it&#rsquo;s a big change. We created a pool of Windows 10 desktops so people can play with the software and get to know it. Then when we upgrade their machine, they&#rsquo;re already used to the technology, and that makes them happy. We&#rsquo;ve gotten a lot of positive responses.&#rdquo;

&#rsquo;We&#rsquo;re excited, as a university and as an IT department, to give students a consistent experience and really level the playing field. We&#rsquo;re breaking down barriers and making resources more accessible. We&#rsquo;re excited that we can bring everything together in a very intuitive and easy-to-use package.&#rdquo;
—Mark Ellersick

Learn more about the technologies powering WCU&#rsquo;s digital workspace:

  • VMware Identity Manager—A BYOD Solution Everyone Can Agree On
  • The Best Keeps Getting Better: Introducing App Volumes 2.12
  • VMware Horizon 7.1 Technical Deep Dive
  • Understanding the Benefits of User Environment Manager
  • Experience High-Performance Graphics with Free NVIDIA GRID & VMware Blast Extreme Test Drive

The post [Video] Western Carolina University Extends Digital Workspace Solutions Campus-Wide appeared first on VMware End-User Computing Blog.

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[Case Study] Halton Healthcare Modernizes Data Centers & Expands with New Hospital

Award-winning Halton Healthcare operates three community hospitals in the Region of Halton in southern Ontario, Canada. The organization is expanding to meet the needs of the growing area it serves.

Old IT systems could not adequately serve a patient population expected to double by 2031. Building a completely new hospital and expanding other facilities provided opportunities for a fresh start with truly integrated IT systems.

Halton Healthcare chose VMware Horizon, Vblock systems from EMC and technology expertise from VMware partner Teknicor for a virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) and disaster recovery solution. The organization now has the largest VDI implementation in Canadian healthcare, serving as a model for hospitals across Canada.

&#rsquo;These VMware systems are part of the central nervous system of our hospital sites. Without them, we wouldn&#rsquo;t be able to help enable clinicians to provide the care they do today.&#rdquo;
—Sandy Saggar, Chief Information Officer, Halton Healthcare

Read more about how Halton Healthcare standardized IT across hospital sites in our case study.

Read the case study.

 

Related:

  • American Red Cross Uses VDI for Faster Disaster Relief through VMware Workspace ONE
  • VMware Horizon VDI Powers WCH&#rsquo;s New Hospital of the Future
  • Flushing Bank Locks Down Data with VMware Horizon VDI

The post [Case Study] Halton Healthcare Modernizes Data Centers & Expands with New Hospital appeared first on VMware End-User Computing Blog.

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Memorial Healthcare Protects Patient Data with a Secure Digital Clinical Workspace

Memorial Healthcare, a top-rated community hospital in Michigan that&#rsquo;s won awards for patient engagement, sees technology as a key to advancing healthcare in its region. Their secure clinical digital workspace allows staff to access the apps and data they need anytime, anywhere. To transform security and protect patient data, Memorial Healthcare deployed VMware NSX, AirWatch and Horizon to secure endpoints and app infrastructure, while streamlining compliance.

Technology ultimately supports the hospital&#rsquo;s mission of helping patients in its region. To aid smaller hospitals that are critical to the area, Memorial Healthcare uses its infrastructure to provide easier access to shared services, including disaster recovery. Having access to secure information on mobile devices and virtual desktops let physicians and staff keep a consistent workflow no matter where they are, in the hospital or in the wider community.

Click here to learn more about how you can empower the digital workspace, such as the secure clinical digital workspace for healthcare, in your company.

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  • American Red Cross Uses VDI for Faster Disaster Relief
  • Explore Sally Beauty’s Innovative Digital Workspace
  • 3BD/2BA with Security & Simplicity: TCAD Streamlines with Digital Workspace Solutions

The post Memorial Healthcare Protects Patient Data with a Secure Digital Clinical Workspace appeared first on VMware End-User Computing Blog.

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3BD/2BA with Security & Simplicity: TCAD Streamlines with VMware Digital Workspace Solutions

Home of the University of Texas at Austin, a number of growing companies and almost as many great barbecue joints, Travis County, Texas is one of the fastest growing areas in the U.S. The entity that determines property taxes there, Travis County Central Appraisal District (TCAD), has seen its workloads grow along with the population. TCAD needed better efficiency, higher security and a simpler way to monitor IT applications to protect citizens&#rsquo; sensitive property information.

Now with VMware’s digital workspace solutions, TCAD can:

  • Meet its security needs with micro-segmentation;
  • Transform desktops into a digital, mobile workspace for field appraisers and business users; and
  • Meet strict regulatory compliance.

The results? Seamless access to business-critical apps, reduced hardware costs with VDI, top-notch service and taxpayer savings.

Want to learn how VMware’s digital workspace solutions can help your business enable your workers with secure access to work apps and data from anywhere? Click here to sign up for a behind-the-scenes peek.

More videos you might like:

  • American Red Cross Uses VDI for Disaster Relief
  • Explore Sally Beauty’s Innovative Digital Workspace
  • Simplifying App & Access Management with VMware Workspace ONE

 

The post 3BD/2BA with Security & Simplicity: TCAD Streamlines with VMware Digital Workspace Solutions appeared first on VMware End-User Computing Blog.

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Hot Swaps and Hot Chicken: How Zaxby’s Grows a Restaurant Chain with VDI

Zaxby&#rsquo;s, a fast-casual restaurant chain with locations in 17 U.S. states, opened its 800th store in October 2016 and shows no sign of slowing down. The corporate franchising arm of the business, based in Athens, Georgia, uses virtual desktops and a business resumption plan powered by VMware Horizon.

Zaxby&#rsquo;s provides virtual desktops for key employees as part of an overall disaster recovery plan, said Ehsan Choudhury, senior director of IT operations and security for Zaxby&#rsquo;s Franchising. &#rsquo;If something were to happen to our data center on-site, we can effectively flip over to a hot site at a co-lo in a different state,&#rdquo; said Choudhury. &#rsquo;And we can send critical staff home with their laptops. They can VPN in to that co-lo and connect to virtual desktops—they can keep working as if nothing had changed.&#rdquo;

With Horizon, Zaxby’s employees can continue working on virtual desktops, no matter what happens.

The company tests the co-lo data and connections regularly. And it&#rsquo;s a good thing, because Choudhury says the company has had a few instances where, &#rsquo;if it hadn&#rsquo;t been for VMware virtualization, we would have been in pretty dire straits. We once had a critical server that was inadvertently damaged beyond recovery. Standing up a brand new physical server takes a while. But in less than an hour, we were able to deploy a virtual server with all our apps.&#rdquo;

This analyst report named Horizon a leader! Click here to download.

Choudhury notes that Zaxby&#rsquo;s also uses Horizon for testing. &#rsquo;That&#rsquo;s a huge factor in moving projects forward. We can take a snapshot, and if something goes wrong in testing we can roll back to that snapshot. Not so easy to do on a physical server if you have to re-deploy an image.&#rdquo;

[Related: VMware Horizon 7.1 Is GA! What’s New—Part 1]

Zaxby&#rsquo;s depends on business intelligence to make decisions about its restaurants every day. &#rsquo;We do everything based on information about data, like sales and transactions or traffic flow in stores,&#rdquo; said Choudhury. &#rsquo;And those decisions are made very quickly. So it&#rsquo;s important to be able to recover fast after a problem or an outage.&#rdquo;

Workers can also be more productive if they&#rsquo;re not confined to an office. &#rsquo;We don&#rsquo;t really tell people when they can work. They have goals to meet, and sometimes they want to work odd hours to get to those goals. None of that would be possible without virtual desktops,&#rdquo; said Choudhury.

[Related: VMware Horizon 7.1 Technical Deep Dive]

Security is another important factor for this data-driven company. Teleworkers use VPN to connect to virtual desktops hosted on-premises. Because these workers handle sensitive financial information, such as accounting and payroll, it&#rsquo;s important that no data leak out of the corporate infrastructure. With VDI, all the data is hosted at the corporate site and remains within the company&#rsquo;s security boundaries.

&#rsquo;Horizon and VMware are an integral part of our operations. We could not work effectively without them. It&#rsquo;s the single most significant platform that has made a lot of things possible.&#rdquo;
—Ehsan Choudhury, Senior Director of IT Operations & Security, Zaxby’s Franchising

The company plans to move computing from 40-percent to 90-percent virtualized by the end of 2017, possibly moving from standard laptops to thin clients for hardware savings. Choudhury also noted that the company has consolidated multiple servers over the years into a single physical box, saving cost, energy and footprint. &#rsquo;With VMware, our data center footprint is ridiculously small compared to seven or eight years ago. Also, if it hadn&#rsquo;t been for virtualization, I would probably need three or four more people on my team just to keep up with day-to-day operations. VMware is pretty awesome.&#rdquo;

If this post is making you hungry, Choudhury recommends the Kickin&#rsquo; Chicken, Tongue Torch sauce and fried pickles on the side.

Hear more Horizon stories:

  • American Red Cross Uses VDI for Faster Disaster Relief through VMware Workspace ONE
  • 77NRG Trusts VMware Over Competitors to Deliver Cloud-Hosted Desktops and Apps
  • Explore Sally Beauty&#rsquo;s Innovative Digital Workspace

The post Hot Swaps and Hot Chicken: How Zaxby&#rsquo;s Grows a Restaurant Chain with VDI appeared first on VMware End-User Computing Blog.

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American Red Cross Uses VDI for Faster Disaster Relief through VMware Workspace ONE

&#rsquo;We are a mobile organization, but our technology wasn&#rsquo;t really mobile.&#rdquo;

That&#rsquo;s how Dave Bullamore, Vice President of End User Services at American Red Cross, summed up the 135-year-old organization&#rsquo;s pre-VDI computing situation. Volunteers and employees were using a hodgepodge of old hardware and outdated software. The Red Cross needed to modernize and go mobile.

The Red Cross developed a digital workspace where their end users could access any apps— including virtual desktops and legacy, installed, cloud and Remote Desktop Service (RDS) apps—from one place. Called Virtual Workplace, this portal, powered by VMware Workspace ONE, is where all Red Cross employees and volunteers can go for role-based, single sign-on (SSO) access to applications and virtual desktops. Users simply use any browser on any device to access Virtual Workplace and enter their credentials.

Applications are now easier to manage and faster to access. A &#rsquo;My Desktop&#rdquo; icon provides a full desktop experience through VDI. Applications range from standard desktop productivity software to specialized regulatory applications. Microsoft applications are highly integrated with Virtual Workplace, providing one-click access to both legacy installed Microsoft apps and cloud-based Office 365, OneDrive and SharePoint. The portal also supports the latest cloud apps such as Concur and SalesForce1.

&#rsquo;We used to delight our internal customers by fixing their computer problem, whatever that was. Now I don&#rsquo;t have to worry about their computer problem. I can give them basically a new computer just by giving them access to the Virtual Workplace.&#rdquo;
—Michael Spencer, Technical Lead, American Red Cross

VMware Solves for Mobility from Data Center to End User

The Red Cross uses VMware technology across the organization:

  • Upgrading from VMware Horizon 6.1 to Horizon 7 brought benefits including Instant Clones, Blast Extreme and Horizon Smart Polices.
  • VMware App Volumes packages, updates and delivers applications to Horizon virtual desktops and RDS app servers, helping reduce image management costs.
  • VMware Identity Manager provides SSO access and serves as a gateway to RDS apps.
  • VMware User Environment Manager personalizes users&#rsquo; environments, capturing individual settings from more than 150 different applications.

After a &#rsquo;soft&#rdquo; rollout of about 50 users in October 2015, the IT group started to communicate the solution to the larger Red Cross organization. Bullamore recalled that he &#rsquo;did dozens of demos, to anyone who would listen.&#rdquo; Interest grew rapidly. Now more than 10,000 unique users access the 150 available apps through VDI each day.

&#rsquo;We never mandated anyone to use this portal,&#rdquo; said Chris Moore, Lead Solutions Architect. &#rsquo;Our goal was, if you build it well, they will come. They&#rsquo;ll see the value. Now people really are seeing the value and they are always asking us to add more apps to Virtual Workplace.&#rdquo;

Saving Time, Saving Lives

Read more about how the American Red Cross uses VDI and digital workspace technology to simplify app and access management.

Red Cross IT staff shared some stories of how Virtual Workplace improves operations in the office and in the field:

  • An emergency crew headed for flooded areas in Texas didn&#rsquo;t have some critical paperwork. Instead of waiting for a fax machine, which is hard to find in a flood zone, they were able to use Virtual Workplace to contact the local Red Cross chapter, finish the paperwork and immediately start providing hot meals and aid to people in need. Virtual Workplace also helps disaster workers activate client assistance cards—prepaid cards that victims can use to buy medicines, clothing and food immediately.
  • Bullamore noted how employees save time because apps run faster through Virtual Workplace. &#rsquo;I was having a conversation with somebody in finance, who handles 25 employees and has to approve procurement card transactions. Four times a month, so that’s 100 times into the system. And she told me that she saves five seconds per click in doing that. And I don’t know how many clicks are in the average session but it’s a material amount. She’s saving nine hours a month or something like that just by running that one app. And that’s just her, it doesn’t speak to the savings of the other members of her team.&#rdquo;
  • When Red Cross executives make presentations to community groups, they used to spend a lot of time talking about computer logistics, making sure the group had the right cables and connections. Now, &#rsquo;instead of carrying laptops and all of those extra cords and equipment, hoping and crossing fingers that it’s going to hook up and work, they have to do is launch Virtual Workplace and have presentations instantly available,&#rdquo; said Technical Lead Michael Spencer.

To read more about how the American Red Cross uses VDI and digital workspace technology, please click here.

&#rsquo;What I love about the Red Cross is the mission to alleviate and prevent human suffering. That&#rsquo;s hugely rewarding, it drives us and keeps us grounded. But it&#rsquo;s our job in IT to help the people who are delivering on the mission without overwhelming them. We have to remember that they&#rsquo;re not here to work with technology. They&#rsquo;re helping and providing services to people who are really having the worst time of their life.&#rdquo;

—Dave Bullamore, VP End User Services, American Red Cross

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The post American Red Cross Uses VDI for Faster Disaster Relief through VMware Workspace ONE appeared first on VMware End-User Computing Blog.

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