With the IT press being dominated with articles on the pitfalls of BYO, MDM, MAM, mobile data and cloud-based services it’s clear that enterprise IT and end-users are thinking about different things.  When we look at the OS on our compute devices it’s clear that more and more end-user concerns are driving the decisions which go into the design of the devices.

When IT takes on desktop virtualization we focus on costs, security and efficiency.  We assess our users to help us determine what is needed for them to do their jobs. With that knowledge we optimize our designs to minimize costs and provide just what every user needs.  We focus on single image management and questions of if MCS or PVS might be a better way to deliver our unified images.  Do we need a 3rd party personalization manager or can we make due to with roaming profiles or perhaps we can drop personalization all together.

Meanwhile our users are purchasing iPads and Androids at an alarming rate.

It’s common for IT to focus on securing our borders, centralizing our data and developing the most efficient infrastructures we can.  It is after all what good IT people are trained to. We read the design guides and perform our Assess Design Deploy process faithfully.   We know who our user groups are and what applications they need.  We’ve created pristine template images, with all of our corporate graphics and the approved list of applications pre-installed.  In short, our design is textbook perfect we’ve addressed all of IT’s project goals and we’re ready to begin roll-out.

Why then do our users balk at adopting virtualized desktops?  Often stalling or delaying projects indefinitely?

Often when projects reach the user testing phase we find that users are reluctant and frequently actively resistant to adopting new virtualized desktops.  When presented with the new “IT Optimized” desktop paradigm our users blatantly refuse to use it.  And the project stalls.

Let’s explore why users are resistant, and what we (IT) can do to help ease them into a new model.   We’ll talk about easy use cases and end user wins. We’ll talk about marketing desktop virtualization to our users. We’ll talk about some not-so-easy scenarios that we may want to put off and tackle after the project has some steam and victories on the record.  We’ll talk about gold images, RemotePC, personal vDisk, personalization and dedicated desktops.  But most importantly we’re going to talk about what users are looking for and how we bring them on-board with the project.

Come join me Friday, May 24th in SYN216: Gaining user acceptance for your desktop virtualization project at Synergy Los Angeles to talk about these issues and learn how to not only drive user adoption but to convert your users into your project’s largest promoters.

Kenneth Fingerlos has been working in IT since 1996 in various roles including systems admin, IT manager and IT consultant with a focus on all aspects of datacenter and end-user computing. Kenneth currently holds certifications from VMware and Citrix and works as a systems architect with Citrix Platinum partner Lewan & Associates. Twitter: @Kfingerlos