Hear it from the Heroes: Reasons you’ll love Jamf Cloud

We asked a few Jamf Heroes about their experiences before and after making the move to Jamf Cloud and wanted to share their stories.

July 6 2020 by

Jeni Asaba

Looking to unload the responsibility of maintaining your Jamf Pro environment? As the number of devices at your organization increases, so does the need for scalable, globally available services to manage them. Jamf offers customers the ability to host Jamf Pro Servers and Jamf Pro services in Jamf Cloud. You handle the inventory, deployment and security of Apple devices in your environment. We’ll handle the infrastructure. Want to learn more about what it can do for you? We asked a few Jamf Heroes about their experiences before and after making the move to Cloud MDM and wanted to share their stories.

Cloud MDM benefit: Streamlined updates

Before migrating to the cloud, Tracy DiLossi of the Ridley School District in Pennsylvania, described the challenges that came with updates involving a complex environment.

“Our old on-premise setup had three Tomcat servers, three caching servers, an SQL server and a load balancer. This was a major undertaking every time we needed to make an update to Jamf,” she said. “We’re not permitted to work off-hours, so we would have to do this during the school day, interrupting services. Not only that, but occasionally one of the servers would update Java and throw off the entire system until you could downgrade it to work with the others nicely.”

Not only were updates a major hassle, but making sure the entire environment was in sync also proved to be a challenge. Interrupted services or unexpected downtime are a less-than-seamless experience for IT and end users. After migration, DiLossi said she’d never go back.

“The process of migrating to the cloud was as simple as running a backup and following the instructions from the migration team,” she explained. “We didn’t lose any devices in the changeover, which was our biggest fear. The entire process took less than three hours, and I was very impressed with the professionalism and the preparedness of the team. There were no surprises, other than the fact that nothing failed.”

Many Jamf Heroes shared DiLossi’s initial fear of migrating. After all, it can seem like a huge undertaking with many moving parts and numerous opportunities for things to go awry. Even with a long list of benefits, Luke Driscoll, from Teesside University in England, described his initial fears of moving everything to Jamf Cloud.

“I was quite concerned about the success of the migration,” he said. “I had the worst-case scenario nightmare of manually re-enrolling close to a thousand mobile devices in the back of my mind. That thought kept me awake at night as the migration date loomed.”

Cloud MDM benefit: Mitigate downtime

Driscoll’s fears, however, disappeared. After migration, not only has Teesside benefited from zero downtime outside of scheduled updates and maintenance, but they’ve also been able to reduce app installation problems due to the convenience of moving their Jamf Self Service portal to be available offline. All of this was also possible at a more affordable price than their previous environment setup, as they only pay for the devices they’re managing.

After transitioning to the Jamf Cloud in February of 2019, Chris Hafner, from Brewster Academy in New Hampshire, also experienced a smooth transition. He shared, “Initially I was a little reluctant to relinquish absolute control over my Jamf environment. After all, our small academy’s infrastructure was similar to very large, robust organizations and the performance was simply spectacular. The comfort and confidence I have in Jamf Cloud couldn’t have been better placed, given the sudden and rapid transition to today’s remote working environment. It was priceless to realize we were suddenly operating in 25 counties across 13 time zones, all without the need to do anything but change policies to use the Cloud Distribution Point as a primary!”

So would he recommend Jamf Cloud to others? You bet! “I would highly recommend current Jamf customers take a serious look at this solution,” he said. “The product is great, the transition team handled everything beautifully, (as I would expect from any Jamf service) and in the end I saved a huge amount of money, time and stress. When my director asked me point blank what I needed for our entire institution to work from offsite, I simply replied, ‘We just need to make sure they all know how to use Zoom.’”

That’s the confidence Jamf wants to inspire with a seamless transition to Jamf Cloud. Especially in our state of ‘new normal,’ it’s crucial to be adaptable and quick to pivot to ensure your organization can succeed, no matter where people are located.

Cloud MDM benefit: Better user support

Andrew Nickless, from the Lakeland Catholic School District in Alberta, Canada, noticed that before moving to Jamf Cloud, they had no way to track, lock or remotely wipe school-owned devices that left the school premises. They also found they were lacking in ways to support teachers and staff at home when they needed assistance or wanted to install software. With staff reductions leaving Nickless as the only IT support person for the entire district, he knew they needed to make a change.

“Making the transition to Jamf Cloud has allowed us to seamlessly transition our teachers and staff to work at home during this pandemic,” he said. “All they had to do was go home and, if they needed something, use Self Service to access applications, visit important websites for remote instruction and run updates. While I do sometimes miss some of the hands-on aspects of having a on-premises Jamf Pro instance, for myself and the school district, the advantages have far outweighed any potential drawbacks. As I always tell people, “Jamf is my co-worker.”

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