Managed Chromebooks are NOT JUST FOR SCHOOLS anymore!
This month Google is celebrating Chromebook’s 10th birthday — to that, a big round of applause is much deserved.
First introduced in 2011, Chrome OS have cut some impressive strides. From a small pilot project in US schools, Managed Chromebooks now cater to different enterprise needs, digitally transforming organisations in multiple ways.
Today, whether you step into a healthcare organisation, hospitality entity or any other business, it’s not unusual to see Managed Chromebooks being used everywhere.
In this post we’ll show you 5 ways Managed Chrome OS devices can digitally transform your organisation — and solve some of the TOP IT hurdles organisations face in 2021.
Let’s see what those simple yet powerful devices can do!
Chromebooks and Remote Work:
While it’s been a year since this ‘BIG remote work Bang’ started, managing the digital operations of remote workforces still poses challenges to IT teams.
These challenges are essentially related to THREE aspects:
The SECURITY of remote devices. Reliable MONITORING of remote devices. And the COST of remote devices.
Now here’s how Managed Chromebooks deliver on those issues:
Managed Chromebooks are one of the most hassle free deployments available today, with enhanced layers of security protection.
Unlike traditional operating systems, Chrome OS automatically updates in the background.
Apps and security patches are automatically updated too. Thereby, admins don’t need to fret over antivirus softwares, complicated settings or compatibility concerns.
Admins can also configure the more granular remote work security bits easily using a 3rd party Chromebook Management tool like GAT Shield.
For instance, they can:
- Manage domain-wide download — report on and remove questionable downloads, apps and extensions on users’ Chromebooks.
- Protect users from wandering off to malicious or irrelevant websites via URL blocking.
- Set up Real-time alerting for inappropriate content and Data Loss Prevention (DLP) on all sites, in all locations and at all times.
- Deploy Active Identity verification: This can even lift security above the LAN level by constantly verifying that the user working behind the device is actually the user whose account is logged in.
- Allow and blacklist extensions using Chromebook Extensions Risk Assessment.
And much more, all from ONE place!
Organisations have been trying to solve this remote work ‘activity monitoring’ riddle for a very long time.
However, Managed Chromebooks tackle it from the root.
By deploying Chromebook devices + a Chromebook Management Tool, you can keep a diligent eye on important Chrome OS activity for remote workers.
From history tracking to content filtering and user activity reports, Admins can spot suspicious behaviour, understand user behaviour flow and even track resource utilization on their Chromebook devices.
Another great perk there is the ability to track the geo-location of all devices at all times.
This is particularly useful if device loss and/or theft situations ever occur. Admins can then remotely disable those devices with peace of mind.
Chromebooks are known for their relatively low prices and maintenance cost. This makes them one of the most budget-friendly devices in the market today.
In fact, according to Google, Chrome OS devices can offer:
295% ? Return on investment (ROI)
3hrs Saved ? per device for workers each week
477K $ ? in IT management cost savings
Even by tossing in a comprehensive Chromebook Management tool, the overall cost of managing a fleet of Chromebooks pales compared to other more complex deployments.
Managed Guest Sessions
Managed Guest Sessions are another fantastic feature that allow Chrome OS devices to be placed in public places, like lobbies, libraries, bank branches, retail stores, etc. and be used by the public.
With that, multiple users can share the same Chrome OS device without having to sign into their Google Account.
Meanwhile, Admins can extend their activity monitoring and security measures to those devices while maintaining user anonymity using a Chromebook Management tool.
This helps your organisation protect users from viewing inappropriate content and better control how these shared devices are being used.
Chromebooks and Data Governance
Data governance defines who within an organization has authority and control over sensitive data assets, and how those data assets may be used.
Today, with mandatory data compliance standards like GDPR, HIPAA, FERPA, etc. data governance is a TOP priority for almost all organisations.
This can be particularly tricky when it comes to governing digital data, especially in a remote work setting — and that’s where Managed Chromebooks come in handy.
With their native Google Workspace collaboration tools, Chromebooks ensure that all of your organisation’s important digital data lies in the same place in the cloud. With that, enforcing a more granular data governance framework becomes much easier.
From there, Admins and security officers can manage file ownership and access rights more effectively, making sure that ONLY THE RIGHT PEOPLE have the right access to sensitive data.
Also, using a tool like GAT Unlock, access to files can be configured in a more manageable setting using the highest data security model available within the Google Workspace environment.
Finally, organisations can use GAT Shield’s real-time DLP alerting to push the Reg. Ex. rules, covering every aspect of browser-based activity, whether it’s a user on an e-banking site or any other site.This ALL provides you with FULL visibility into users’ digital data, not only for data compliance, but also to easily identify, classify, manage and protect sensitive data on Chrome OS devices.
Managed Chromebooks in HR
Managed Chromebooks are also used by many organisations to streamline their usual HR operations.
I remember the first time I used one back in 2019 at a job interview. I was requested to log into a managed guest session to answer a few pre-interview questions.
Today, HR departments are using Managed Chromebooks to improve even more core HR operations, including:
- Improve ‘Remote Hiring’ via the inbuilt Google Workspace suite — All from one place.
- Protect Candidates’ data retention operations.
- Understand employee productivity and Identify TOP achievers.
- Boost Internal Communication flow more easily.
*Checkout our post 5 HR Musts to Fuel Employee Retention in the Age of Remote Work.
Improve IT Operations
Managed Chromebooks = Hassle Free Endpoint Management.
According to Google, Chromebooks are developed to ‘’Free IT from the day-to-day pains of managing endpoints’’. That includes less tickets, military-grade durability and automatic updates.
Managed Chromebooks also allow for the automation of other repetitive bulk tasks Admin tasks like onboarding/offboarding operations.
Using a tool like GAT Flow IT can easily build a workflow to automatically offboard or modify a set of Chromebooks or Chrome OS devices assigned to any given user or group to deprovision.
You can also disable or re-enable them in bulk remotely by moving the users to a selected OU or group within seconds.
That frees up valuable IT resources and time that can be better put towards more urgent tasks.
Simply put, Chromebooks are relatively inexpensive, totally ‘remotely’ configurable, do not suffer from viruses and have a very low maintenance cost. As for fleet management, they’re field upgradable within seconds from any Admin desk.
Today, many leading enterprises are realizing these powerful perks and moving many of their field fleets to Chromebooks or Chromeboxes.