It’s 2018 and numerous assets are available to elevate the education experience. However, limited budgets often deter school districts from purchasing new technology resources. Despite the clear benefits for students, faculty, and administration, IT adoption seems just out of reach. So, what if there was a solution that improved efficiency/productivity and maximized your budget? There is! Desktop as a Service delivers a user-friendly, consistent virtual desktop environment for schools. Implementing DaaS lets you outsource back-end desktop management and maintenance to an expert so that your IT staff can focus on innovation. The following sections discuss the specific benefits of Desktop as a Service in Education for each group of users.
Shift CapEx to OpEx: Desktop as a Service utilizes virtual machines in the Cloud, causing less strain on physical hardware. Your IT team can extend the life of legacy desktops or substitute them with smaller machines running thin client applications. In addition, management and maintenance are handled by the DaaS provider in a data center, which eliminates equipment replacement costs. Scale your desktop use to match school capacity. Spending money on idle desktops during summer vacation seems like a waste. DaaS allows for reduced or increased implementation and pay as you go, so your IT staff can spin up the exact number of desktops needed at any given time.
Full-time Management & Support: Desktop as a Service works from a central dashboard. Instead of walking to each individual machine to make time-consuming changes, your IT staff can install system updates and configure applications for all devices at once. Technology is deployed to replace manual tasks with automation, increasing productivity and efficiency, especially for schools with large computer labs and libraries. “As a Service” expresses a partnership in which the provider will continue to support your school’s technology post-implementation. This includes hands-on or remote troubleshooting from engineers and customer services desks.
Increased Security: Network security monitoring and content filters protect against sensitive data loss and malware attacks. Unlike traditional desktops that store data at the endpoint, DaaS virtually transfers data to the Cloud and wipes it from the desktops after each session. A central access point with continuous monitoring is less vulnerable to threats than multiple endpoint devices.
Consistent Application Access: Desktop as a Service creates a standardized experience that is available from anywhere. Any device can access digital resources from the Cloud; a program that teachers instruct with in class can be opened by a student studying at home. To conquer the division of needs, teachers can build the required virtual application buckets for specific classes or grades. A teacher’s workday doesn’t end when he/she leaves the school building. Nights spent creating lesson plans, checking emails, and grading papers are optimized with DaaS. Teachers can log in from home and view the same desktop with all available features.
Encourage Innovation: Education delivery has transformed from paper and textbooks to online homework and testing. To meet students where they are in terms of learning, teachers are responding with software instruction tools that are digitally accessible and interactive. Desktop as a Service gives IT staff more time to add new innovations as teachers discover them. With DaaS running on less power-hungry machines, teachers can operate more dynamic media in classrooms and labs. CAD applications and streaming video have the necessary connectivity to avoid bogging down the network.
BYOD: Most kids have at least one device. Instead of staying after hours in the computer lab or emailing an assignment to themselves, students can access school resources from any internet-connected device. Desktop as a Service is cloud-based, providing virtual accessibility and resolving the compatibility issue. An example: Ethan is a high school sophomore with an essay due tomorrow. He finishes writing at home and plans to print his paper in the school computer lab in the morning before class. When he arrives, he realizes that he forgot to send the final version to his email! Unfortunately, Ethan is marked down a letter grade because his essay was turned in a day late. Now let’s talk about Ethan’s experience if his school enabled Desktop as a Service. He works on the paper the night before from the virtual desktop portal on his laptop. The next day, he downloads and prints directly from the Cloud that saved his final draft. Ethan’s essay is turned in on time.
Desktop virtualization in Education has benefits for every user group. Transitioning to an “As a Service” solution gives administrators and IT staff cost-effective tools to enhance security and productivity. Teachers gain access to tech-based instructional resources and time-saving planning features. And students can use familiar personal devices to complete homework and collaborate with peers. Desktop as Service is a powerful catalyst to launch your school into the technological future.