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Cybersecurity & Risk Management

The Benefits of Microsoft Intune Suite for Modern Workplaces

By Josh Morganthall, Microsoft Practice Manager, Blue Mantis

Microsoft Intune Suite unifies several endpoint management and security solutions into one bundle. In this blog post, I discuss the business value of Microsoft’s cloud-based service and the operational efficiencies and enhanced user experience it brings to IT teams and users.

For today’s highly distributed modern workspaces, it is becoming increasingly important to secure corporate data while enabling employees to work from anywhere. Microsoft Intune is often key to a CIO’s strategy to secure and manage employee devices. Intune is a cloud-based service that corporate IT departments use for their mobile device management (MDM) and mobile application management (MAM). Deeply integrated with the cloud-powered Microsoft 365 productivity suite, CIOs and IT managers at businesses with investments in the Microsoft ecosystem deploy Intune to manage their corporate-issued and employee-owned devices because it provides a unified endpoint management solution that gives organizations options to do what’s best for them and their many different user devices. It was originally introduced as Windows Intune in April 2010 and four years later, Microsoft dropped “Windows” from the product name as it had expanded Intune’s management capabilities to other platforms.

As a Microsoft Solutions Architect, I have seen firsthand the benefits of IT departments adopting Intune and how it is helping organizations streamline their operations and enhance productivity. In 2023, Microsoft updated the service with new features, product integrations, and a new name: Microsoft Intune Suite. In this blog post, I will discuss the business value of Microsoft Intune Suite and the operational efficiencies it brings to the table.

What Is Microsoft Intune Suite?

Microsoft Intune Suite unifies several endpoint management and security solutions into one bundle. This can simplify the endpoint management experience for IT teams, improve an organization’s security posture, and provide exceptional user experiences.

Microsoft 365 is deeply integrated with the Intune Suite, empowering IT and security teams with data science and AI (Artificial Intelligence) to increase automation. The idea behind this integration is to help IT managers be proactive in addressing endpoint management and other security challenges. One of the top reasons why a CIO would want to add Microsoft Intune suite to their IT stack is that it simplifies app management across multiple device platforms—not just Microsoft Windows PCs, but also the wide array of devices running Google Android, Apple iOS, and (depending on the Intune license) Apple macOS, too.

The Microsoft Intune Suite becomes extremely useful for organizations that not only use Microsoft 365 apps for productivity but also have their own in-house custom apps for employees at a business or students at a school. Intune can connect to and distribute those custom apps from a secure private app store so that internal IT departments have full control over where those apps and the valuable data those apps access are installed. This is an excellent way for IT managers to ensure that employees and students can use any device they choose to collaborate, work from anywhere, and securely access and connect to the organization’s digital resources.

Understanding the difference between MDM and MAM

Before we dive into the features of Microsoft Intune Suite, let’s first understand the difference between mobile device management (MDM) and mobile application management (MAM). MDM focuses on managing and securing the entire device, including the operating system, applications, and data. With MDM, IT administrators can control which apps are installed on devices, enforce security policies, and remotely wipe data if a device is lost or stolen.

On the other hand, MAM focuses on securing and managing the applications and data on a device, rather than the device itself. With MAM, IT administrators can control how data is accessed, shared, and protected within specific apps. This allows for more granular control over corporate data, without impacting the user’s personal data or applications.

Pros and Cons of MDM and MAM

Generally speaking, there are some pros and cons IT leaders should consider when choosing between a mobile device management (MDM) and a mobile application management (MAM) solution:

Complete control over the entire device, including the operating system and all applicationsInvasive to the user’s personal device and data
Enforces security policies and remotely wipes data from lost or stolen devicesCan impact device performance and battery life
Consistent user experience across all devicesLimited flexibility in terms of app deployment and customization

For a MAM solution, there are also some pros and cons to consider:

Granular control over corporate data without impacting the user’s personal data or applicationsLimited control over the device itself, which can lead to security vulnerabilities
Flexibility in terms of app deployment and customizationUser experience can be inconsistent across devices
Can be used in conjunction with MDM or as a standalone solutionMay require added licensing and configuration to fully implement

While MDM and MAM solutions both have their advantages and disadvantages, it ultimately comes down to the specific needs and goals of your organization. In many cases, your organization may need a bit of both MDM and MAM to fulfill your business needs.

The Business Value of Microsoft Intune Suite

Now that we have a better understanding of MDM and MAM, let’s take a closer look at the top features in Intune Suite and the business value it brings to the table for CIOs, CISOs, and other IT leaders. Intune Suite can deliver MDM and MAM features that:

  • Integrate with other Microsoft services and apps, such as Azure Active Directory, Microsoft Defender, Microsoft Endpoint Manager, and more
  • Automate policy deployment for apps, devices, and security compliance
  • Protect data on any device, whether it is organization-owned or personally owned
  • Simplify access with single sign-on (SSO) and multi-factor authentication (MFA) options
  • Support a Zero Trust security model with compliance and reporting features

So, the key value proposition for the Microsoft Intune Suite—especially for organizations already invested in the Microsoft 365 and Azure cloud ecosystems—is that it’s a simple yet powerful solution for IT managers to secure and manage both corporate-owned and employee-owned devices. Microsoft Intune Suite can paradoxically reduce your organization’s IT complexity while also providing your IT teams with extremely granular visibility control over user devices. For example, the Microsoft Tunnel feature in Intune Suite automates the enrollment of employee- or student-owned Android and iOS devices over any public internet connection. Intune Suite now automatically creates virtual private network “tunnels” that can set up remote Android and iOS devices for security and management. What used to be a laborious process is now accomplished in a few clicks by an IT manager.

Blue Mantis designs and deploys Microsoft Intune Suite solutions

If your organization wants to leverage the power of Microsoft Intune Suite, the team at Blue Mantis can help you. Whether you are a private or public sector organization, our Microsoft experts can help you design and deploy a customized and cost-effective Intune Suite solution that meets your unique needs and challenges. Blue Mantis has a long history of cloud transformation services and a dedicated Microsoft practice and engineering team that can guide you through the entire process. If you are interested in learning more about how Blue Mantis can help you with Intune Suite, please contact us today for a free consultation. We look forward to hearing from you.

Josh Morganthall headshot.

Josh Morganthall

Blue Mantis’ Microsoft Practice Manager Josh Morganthall has nearly a decade of hands-on experience architecting, deploying, and administering Microsoft Windows, Active Directory, and Azure cloud infrastructure for SMBs and enterprises. Josh attended the University of South Alabama and holds almost a dozen current IT industry certifications specializing in the cloud and virtualization. Connect with Josh on LinkedIn.