Scale Intune?

How can service providers scale their Intune management business with limited resources? 

How can service providers scale their Intune management business with limited resources? 

  • Varying personnel resources
  • Scale and become more profitable 
  • Intune for managed service providers 
  • Riihicloud solution 
  • Patching and weekly updates 
  • Tailor made packages 
  • Android, iOS and macOS
  • Endpoint Analytics
  • MSP experiences
  • Sell Intune service to green field customers 

In the last blog we discussed why Intune is the best tool to maintain and support Windows devices. This article concentrates more on the business side and how to run device management successfully and profitably. 

Varying personnel resources  

When the service provider grows with existing and new customers there are always limited personnel resources to handle all the tasks at all the customers. There are recurring tasks for each customer and then situations that strike as a surprise and need immediate attention.  

The service provider is committed to ensuring that the customers’ endpoints are up to date and the recurring and new tasks are deployed in a timely manner. What happens when the personnel are unavailable? Sick leaves, holidays, personnel changes, they all cause situations where the customer work is disrupted. Also scaling to serve new customers is difficult if the personnel resources are already tight with existing customers. 

Scale and become more profitable 

The normal way to scale is to hire new personnel resources to serve new customers. This does not scale up or down well.  

The better approach is to reserve the existing personnel resources for new customer onboarding and serving existing customers with more demanding tasks. The recurring weekly tasks that are mostly the same for all the customers, can and should be handled with more advanced technology: the same updates can be applied to all the customers’ endpoints with multi-customer cross-tenants architecture. This way the work of the packager can be multiplied by the number of customers and multiplied by the number of endpoint devices in each tenant. A lot of manual work is avoided, and a lot of value is created with the multiply times multiply approach. This value can be shared with all the parties, which in turn results in better maintained endpoints with reasonable costs. 

Intune for managed service providers 

Microsoft has introduced M365 Lighthouse to better serve the needs of managed service providers. The development of Lighthouse has not yet brought the results that the service providers have been waiting for. 

Lighthouse acts as a knowledgeable advisor and a guidance tool but does not directly create policies within tenants. For application patching and configuration updates MSPs have needed to use third party tools. 

Microsoft has however enabled its development partners, independent software vendors (ISVs) like Riihicloud, to supplement and complete its offering with additional functionality via Azure APIs. 

Riihicloud packaging factory combined with Riihicloud multi-customer cross-tenants solution in Azure is such and thus a pure cloud solution used by many service providers.  

Riihicloud solution 

Riihicloud ISO 27001 certified solution includes ready-made packages of common applications and the updates to these as new versions are available from software vendors. The time required to package a single application takes from a few hours to days depending on the application. MSPs can save a lot of time using readily packaged applications and their updates. 

This has been seen also by Microsoft that published their enterprise application catalog in February 2024. This addition into the Intune product line is targeted at enterprises as the name implies. The admin does not need to use time anymore to package the most common applications. 

Riihicloud solution is targeted to MSPs serving several customers and has much more functionality for MSPs. With the tenant copy feature the MSP can save several days when onboarding a new customer into Intune. A properly configured tenant includes easily hundreds of fine-tuned configurations. 

In addition to applications the Riihicloud solution provides ready-made configuration packages (profiles), like OneDrive for Business Single Sign-On and Known Folder Move. In the pure cloud-based Intune these configuration packages are the replacement for the old on-premises group policies. 

Patching and weekly updates 

The big difference is that the Riihicloud service runs automatically in the background and updates all the customer tenants and the MSP can concentrate on more demanding tasks. Once a tenant is connected to Riihicloud the updates are deployed by the Riihicloud multi-customer cross-tenants solution. 

Tailor made packages 

In addition to common applications the packaging factory can handle also customized applications. There are always some special applications that need to be modified according to the customer’s need. 

In addition to applications Riihicloud also offers configuration packages. There are common configuration packages and also customized configuration packages like VPN, printer, and certificates.  

Windows Autopilot can easily be configured with Riihicloud packages and configurations so that the new laptop can be delivered directly to the user’s home address. Autopilot can also be used to reset, repurpose, and recover devices. 

The whole list of packages and configurations can be found in the Riihicloud console. 

Android, iOS and macOS 

Intune supports Android, iOS, and macOS and so does also Riihicloud solution. There are application and configuration packages available for macOS, also customized. For mobile devices MSPs are using Riihicloud configuration profiles and easy onboarding with tenant copy feature. 

For service desk personnel the “Remote actions” like “Wipe” can be directly executed from the Riihicloud console, without jumping between tenants. 

Endpoint Analytics 

Riihicloud solution includes a real time analytics console that combines information of all devices from all customer tenants into one dashboard view. From the modifiable graphics (bars and pies) the technician can drill down to see more details and react accordingly. 

Endpoint analytics enables proactive maintenance and provides also alerts relating to problems with endpoints and applications.  

MSP experiences  

Within years of working together with MSPs Riihicloud has listened and learned what are the challenges and requirements to serve multiple customers as an MSP. The feedback from Riihicloud MSP customers includes: 

Riihicloud enables transferring a limited amount of our IT professionals from routine work to more productive work.” 

When outsourcing endpoint management, the supplier’s reliability and the solutions usability are the greatest importances for us.” 

Although there were several customer environments, devices and smart packages, Riihicloud’s automated service process guaranteed fast and effortless commissioning.” 

“Our successful collaboration is based on mutual respect and trust.” 

Sell Intune service to green field customers 

New technology opens new business possibilities. MSPs can now onboard and profitably update and maintain devices with customers that earlier could not afford the on premises infra and dedicated administrator. Riihicloud with Intune is a pure cloud solution that enables MSPs to scale and continuously secure their customers’ endpoints.  

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