ANAHEIM – You’ve heard Citrix talk about its Workspaces idea before. In fact, if you checked out CDN’s Synergy coverage last year, you’d already be somewhat familiar with the concept of the Citrix Workspaces solution. So why is a solution you’ve already heard about the main topic at Synergy 2018?
At Synergy 2018 in Anaheim, California, Citrix took to the main stage to debut the complete, realized form of its Citrix Workspaces solution. This is a unified digital workspace for businesses that allows users to securely access their web, SaaS, Windows, Linux, mobile apps, desktops, and files from anywhere and across any device.
Essentially, it is a single sign-on workspace that creates a unified experience for employees. For instance, employees can access all types of SaaS apps on their devices like Salesforce or Slack within the Citrix workspace, so that they aren’t hoping around different applications and tabs. It keeps all workplace activities in one place for ease of use.
“In the past when we talked about Workspaces, it was more of a vision. This is where we want to go,” explained Kedar Poduri, VP of product management, Citrix analytics. “The last few months we’ve been executing on that vision, especially when we say on stage that everything is available now or within the next 60 days. That’s a way for us to show we are transforming in some way from talking too much about the vision to showing things and talking about things that are here and now.”
That change in mentality has been part of a culture change that begun last year with a change in leadership at Citrix. And while a lot of that change has to do with internal policies and actions, it also extends to what Citrix showed off at this week’s Synergy event. Everything about the Workspaces solution is available now.
At it’s core, the idea of Workspaces is to increase workplace productivity. With so many apps available to workers, it’s not very productive to have to search for a document or slideshow in Office 365 or G-Suite and then attach that application to a Slack channel. With Workspaces, employees can access all these apps on the Citrix solution, making processes quicker and seamless.
And while not every SaaS application is currently implemented on Workspaces today, the goal is to eventually get all of them onboard so that the Citrix Workspaces solution becomes the go-to for every organization.
“Eventually assume that every SaaS app that you can think of will be available through Workspace. And then when it comes to cloud apps, you need to deploy the cloud solutions so that we can build or deliver the same experience that you see for SaaS apps,” said Poduri.
But the boost to productivity isn’t the only benefit with Workspaces. By accessing every app you may need to do your job through the virtual workspace, Citrix is able to make it a secure experience by placing a ‘digital perimeter’ that surrounds the user, apps, and network.
So if Workspaces is the only application you are launching to do your job, no matter where and no matter what device, IT managers can set restrictions to ensure security. For example, if you are accessing workspaces on an unsecure public network, then Workspaces could prevent you from accessing certain high-level documents while on that network, or prevent you from accessing other potential unsafe websites.
And when it comes to Canadian channel partners, this solution gives them another tool in the arsenal, as the solution is a fit for organizations of any size.
“We have the large enterprises as well. We have the five major banks, we have the governments, the public sector, and healthcare accounts. They can all leverage the workspace, the future of work, and SMBs have a flavor that they can choose and leverage as well,” said Ching Mac, commercial sales director at Citrix Canada.
The question with Canada is always how SMBs can take advantage of a solution, and Citrix kept that organizational size in mind.
“One of the key opportunities for us in SMB is our partner channel and CSPs. It’s one of our fastest growing parts of our business, and our workspace is a new capability to go into SMB accounts. In many cases, for an SMB, we are more highly penetrated on a per seat basis. They are already using Citrix stuff, so it’s almost easier to get involved in an SMB way,” said PJ Hough, chief product officer and senior vice president at Citrix.