One of the biggest challenges for IT directors and project managers in rolling out these updates will be coordinating the schedules of thousands of users who need to be upgraded over the course of just a few months. Depending on the size of your company, you may need to assign between 2 and 10 team members to the tasks of emailing, calling, reminding and rescheduling, as well as making sure technicians are where they need to be. It won’t be sustainable to dedicate that many resources to OS upgrades every year moving forward.
Leading IT research and advisory company, Gartner, suggests that CIOs regularly reevaluate capabilities, asking themselves ‘Are we too busy managing hardware and applications to be an effective partner?’ Rather, the end goal should be to create ‘operational efficiency and a more strategic IT operation.'
There is a lot to think about when scheduling Windows 10 servicing. You are going to be asking thousands of employees to lose access to the system for 20-45 minutes – the average time it takes to update an office-based user’s PC. For the growing number of remote workers, an update can halt productivity for even longer due to issues like network constraints, the need for phone support, and the potential that they are replacing their own hardware.
Before you can schedule a user, you’ll need to determine:
- If any hardware needs to be upgraded or replaced.
- Who should be part of the pilot group to validate applications before rolling out to the entire organization.
- Which users need to be scheduled together.
- Which dates to avoid.
- Times when it’s too costly to push out the update, for example during business hours for employees engaged in mission-critical activity.
- Who is office-based and who is remote.
- Your project team’s capacity.
- The individual availability of every user in your company.
Manually scheduling timeslots to update every user is no small task in a company with 5,000 employees or more. Project budget can ebb away in the time it takes to send emails and make phone calls to answer questions, reschedule slots, follow up and remind end users of what they need to do to ensure the success of the update.
Even during the execution phase, teams will have to manually push out updates, and monitor status closely. At every step of the way there is a chance that users will want to reschedule, business changes will disrupt the program, mistakes will be made, or the update will fail, meaning you need to roll back the update and manually reschedule once the issue is resolved, driving up costs even further.
Using self-scheduling is key to automating Windows 10 servicing and reducing costs
To manage ongoing Windows 10 servicing cost-effectively, companies need to adopt a repeatable, automated scheduling process.