Endpoint Management | System Administration

My IT forecast for 2024: Sunny and partly cloudy

15. February 2024, Avatar of Armin LeinfelderArmin Leinfelder

Weather forecasts for the week ahead often include statements such as “mainly sunny with scattered clouds.” Forecasts for the IT sector, on the other hand, are based on a much broader perspective and longer timeline. Accordingly, my crystal ball forecast for endpoint management in 2024 includes – but is definitely not limited to – clouds.

In short

  • Companies are increasingly relying on hybrid IT strategies that integrate both cloud and on-premises solutions.
  • Ultimately, it is still important to keep security in mind – cue data governance.
  • In endpoint management, users are increasingly requesting greater support of Linux and the integration of additional devices. However, local discovery for certain systems will remain relevant.
  • A clear advantage of cloud-based solutions is how they promote the exchange of knowledge within communities, generate data for AI model training, and connect users and partners more efficiently.

Let’s first take a look at the current “general weather situation” in IT. Experts like to compare corporate environments with medieval fortresses: A surrounding bulwark keeps intruders out while corporate IT – ideally – has everything under control within the castle walls. However, clouds signaling a weather change have long been gathering around the fortress. Especially since the coronavirus pandemic, cloud computing has proven to be a useful addition that’s enabled many employees to work outside the fortress walls from home and other locations. Many companies now also appreciate the value of cloud-based collaboration and conferencing solutions, for example.

The question of the cloud

Partners and customers keep asking us if baramundi is planning to “go to the cloud.” Our unequivocal answer is “yes and no.”  We’re not being evasive or indecisive, rather it reflects a careful and well thought-out strategy.

The advantages of cloud computing are well-known. Companies can easily set up and scale high-availability environments as needed regardless of location and without purchasing new hardware. However, the cloudless IT skies of on-premises or “on-prem” IT operations also come with multiple and substantial benefits such as unrestricted control over systems and data and low-latency connections needed for manufacturing production machinery and industrial control systems. On-prem operations also reduce concerns about data governance and compliance that arise when data is handed over to US cloud giants and other third-party network providers. The cost of cloud services also has become a major issue that’s strained many IT budgets. Simply put, outsourcing mission-critical services can get expensive.

Another less-discussed point favoring on-prem IT operations is that many companies rely on extensively modified or specialized systems that cannot be easily migrated to the cloud. The result is a hybrid IT environment that preserves substantial investments in business-critical systems while shifting newer systems, processes and services to the cloud. So, yes, those are scattered or partly cloudy conditions vs. fully cloud-covered.

baramundi has long followed the path of hybrid IT. That started in 2012 when we started supporting mobile devices and expanded our Windows client management solutions into a comprehensive (and still-expanding) Unified Endpoint Management (UEM) system. We first summoned the “clouds” with the integration of online services for push notifications and have steadily – and strategically -- increased our “cloudiness.” Customers in the EU now use the cloud with our Argus Cockpit management tool as well as with the baramundi Ticketing System powered by Omninet. Most recently, Argus Experience and Remote Desk were added as cloud modules. The Remote Desk solution is currently available in North America and other markets. We’ll also be using the cloud to expand geographic availability of our other cloud-based modules in compliance with applicable data privacy and hosting regulations.

Hybrid Unified Endpoint Management

In 2024, a sensible balance between cloud and on-prem use will continue to drive the IT industry. baramundi also will continue the consistent implementation of our hybrid strategy guided by the input and needs of our customers and partners.

For example, our customers want us to increase support for Linux and support additional devices, especially those used in operational technology (OT) environments. For security, reliability and other reasons, it’s particularly important to industrial customers to keep the discovery, inventory and management of sensitive process controllers and other manufacturing systems on-prem. That will remain the case for the foreseeable future.

At the same time, baramundi will be focusing on how we can best expand our cloud services in combination with our on-prem solutions. After all, tools like Argus Experience that run on Azure are easy to deploy and use in the cloud. More broadly, we continue to expand and enhance our Unified Endpoint Management suite with new hybrid and cloud-based solutions such as in-house company app stores, package management services and OS-level functions.

More safety, more efficiency

As we’ve seen with ransomware and other cyber threats, clouds can sometimes build, darken and bring stormy weather. That’s where UEM and security management come together. Comprehensive UEM solutions cannot be limited to the cloudless skies of on-prem management and instead should incorporate cloud-based capabilities that optimize security and efficiency. For example, interfaces to external cloud-based services improve the effectiveness of vulnerability scanning and other security practices from a common interface. Even the ability to give IT admins a quick and accurate overview of all network endpoints via the cloud and make patch distribution easier and faster improves an organization’s overall security posture.

Last but not least, I am keen to use the power and scale of cloud computing to strengthen the community concept. The cloud can be used very efficiently by IT pros and other subject matter experts to share useful data and information about technology innovations, opportunities and challenges (generative AI, anyone?). Whether it’s for creating and sharing a specialized wiki or a database for AI models and algorithms, cloud-based environments are the breeding ground for new ideas, knowledge-sharing and upskilling. We want to make productive sharing of best practices, scripts, experiences, etc., convenient and scalable for our UEM community. With that in mind, I look forward to hearing suggestions from customers, partners and colleagues and invite you to network with me on LinkedIn.

When I look up from my crystal ball, it’s clear that the future is hybrid and the UEM world will continue to evolve and expand in 2024. baramundi customers can expect a mix of bright sunshine and fair weather clouds in all directions. And that is a very good outlook both for the actual weather and for endpoint management.

End user satisfaction meets the cloud

Increase employee productivity and satisfaction with baramundi Argus Experience – no matter where they work! Use our cloud-based solution to provide stable, reliable and high-performance IT devices and solve endpoint problems before they can frustrate users. Learn why Digital Employee Experience (DEX) management is important and how it saves time and money by downloading our free white paper.

Download the “Digital Employee Experience” white paper

Read more

Entries 1 to 3 of 3