Apr 25 2023
Digital Workspace

Modern Workspace Management Builds on the Benefits of Classic Telework

IT officials can meet the tech needs of government employees through managed devices or more selective application management.

Following the federal lead from Capitol Hill, the states of Arizona, California, Oregon, Texas and Washington were among early states establishing formal telework, beginning as early as 2001. With laptops then easy to obtain for state government employees, many looked at telework through the lenses of work-life balance and decreasing traffic on local roads.

Interestingly, in a 2001 Washington State University report, Washington government employees indicated that they benefited from spending less time commuting and cited increased productivity and improved business continuity as results of telework flexibility.

More than two decades later, government employees working from home still applaud many of those same benefits. But today’s sophisticated agencies have embraced a holistic approach to remote work. With widely available tools and better broadband access, state and local government employees can work from anywhere and collaborate with colleagues across environments, whether conferencing from the office, from their homes or even from far-flung locales while on the road.

This concept of working from anywhere is the cornerstone of modern workspace management (read “Agencies Embrace Modern Workspace Management for Distributed Workforces”).

Click on the banner to explore management technology insights by becoming an Insider.

Managing Mobile Devices to Support Flexible Workspaces

With modern workspace management, an employee’s government-issued device is capable of becoming an entire self-contained office on the go. Agencies can administer these devices with assistance from a managed services provider, perhaps through a Device as a Service initiative or a separate mobile device management program. We look at the benefits of Jamf for Apple environments, for example (read “Review: Jamf Pro with Jamf Cloud Scales for Modern Workspace Management”).

Mobile device management programs easily set uniform qualifications for features, accessibility, location tracking and more with simple configuration measures. The Massachusetts Executive Office of Technology Services and Security runs a fully Microsoft environment, where its employees can get up and running quickly with everything required to do their jobs.

Finding the Right Management Approach for an Applications Portfolio

For those agencies that want more control over their own devices, administrators may choose to manage applications, perhaps by running devices as virtual machines through Desktop as a Service. Agencies can keep applications current and secure through automation. They can choose to do this with government-issued devices or through a BYOD program for employees (see “5 Questions IT Agencies Should Ask About Application Management”).

However it is implemented, state government employees anecdotally are happier with the flexibilities afforded by modern workspace management. At a recent conference, Colorado’s CISO highlighted liberal remote work as a perk of the job for state employees; Texas’s CISO acknowledged she would like her state to offer more remote work.

In the National Association of State Chief Information Officers' 2022 survey of state CIOs, 73 percent said they used expanding remote work and flexible schedules as a way to attract and retain a qualified workforce last year. Modern workspace management made that possible.

UP NEXT: How to build a zero-trust environment with Microsoft 365.

SDI Productions/Getty Images

Learn from Your Peers

What can you glean about security from other IT pros? Check out new CDW research and insight from our experts.