Success Accelerator. Citrix Worldwide Consulting Solutions. Planning and Executing a Successful Go Live

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1 Success Accelerator Planning and Executing a Successful Go Live Citrix Worldwide Consulting Solutions i

2 Table of Contents Introduction... 1 Communication... 2 Training... 3 Administrators and Help Desk Training... 3 Organizing Support... 3 Suggested Training Matrix Level One (Help Desk)... 4 Suggested Training Matrix Level Two (Senior Help Desk)... 4 Suggested Training Matrix Level Three (Citrix Administrators)... 4 Suggested Training Matrix Citrix Strategic Infrastructure/Solution Architects... 4 User Training... 6 Go Live... 7 Migration... 7 Pilot... 7 Rollout Support... 8 Initial Rollout... 8 Change Control... 8 Backup and Restoration... 8 Disaster Management... 8 ii

3 Introduction A new virtual desktop infrastructure has been designed, built, tested and is ready to go live in production. Now what? The key to making a successful move from physical to virtual desktops lies in gaining user acceptance by providing the smoothest possible transition. IT organizations must have a plan for moving users from their traditional desktops to the newly designed virtual desktop infrastructure without causing user issues. Making sure that users are aware of the changes will help to facilitate a successful rollout. In terms of the Citrix Consulting methodology, this rollout stage of a project comes at the fourth and final phase. This Go Live guide focuses on the rollout phase, during which end user testing is conducted through a pilot and then the solution is rolled out to all targeted users in full production. This includes the go live planning, support procedures and IT operations, and enduser training. Time is also allotted during this phase to gather feedback and implement relevant changes. So now it is time to put this new environment into production so that organizations can begin to leverage the benefits of a virtual desktop solution! The two biggest components of ensuring a successful rollout after the solution has been fully designed and tested are communication and training. 1

4 Communication Effective communication to the support staff and end users is needed so that they are aware and wellinformed of the changes on the horizon. Communication for the upcoming pilot/production rollout of the new environment should have begun during the design and/or build & test phases and should continue throughout rollout. Communication needs to be catered to the audience consuming it. A couple of main groups that communication should be created for and focused on are help desk/environment administrators and end users both the pilot user subset and the entire production user group. Different communications should be prepared and delivered to each of these groups. Please take the time to consider the following items representing key decisions that need to be made for supporting the new environment: Prior to the pilot what can users expect? What are the benefits for the users? What are potential differences in the way they are working today? Start with pilot group questions and issues that arise during pilot and associated resolutions should be documented for use during full production rollout. User guides provide specific guides that will be used to help transition users to the new environment. The guides should include details to help the user function in the new environment without relying on support let users know what changed and what to expect clear communication is key for happy users, let users know what will look different and how their daily work will change. Advertise benefits of new solution rollout plan and communications. What will be used to market the new Citrix environment to the general user community? While most users are resistant to change, enabling them to understand the periphery around these changes often increases acceptance. Users want to know when and why changes are occurring, how it will affect them, etc. Decide what will be the key medium for communication. s? Web site? Posters? 2

5 Training Adequate training is another key factor in making sure that both the end users and the team who will support the environment are armed with the knowledge and tools they need to be confident in maintaining and using the new environment. This section discusses the suggested various training and certification requirements that will help operational personnel to support the new Citrix environment going forward, and also outlines options for training the end users. Administrators and Help Desk Training To adequately support the environment, technical staff will need to be adequately trained and certified to ensure that the platform is well maintained to increase productivity and agility of the environment. Prepare the help desk personnel with preliminary training so they will be ready to handle any issue during the pilot and the production rollouts. Use the pilot to test the processes and define clear lines for escalation to more experienced support personnel, such as aliases and voice numbers. Identify the most common issues likely to be experienced and provide FAQ documents and KB articles. When planning the rollout, be sure to include the help desk management in the coordination of the plans. Citrix Education has tailored courses to specific job functions and roles, and as such training can be targeted to IT departments. Courses can also be tailored to specific products to match specific product specializations where required. Organizing Support This section discusses the various support levels (along with applicable skills and certifications) recommended to address Citrix-related user issues. It includes all processes beginning with a user s first contact with the help desk through how issues get escalated and resolved. The user experience when contacting the help desk for Citrix-related queries often has a profound impact on the user perception. Multi-tier support levels have been found to be the most effective means of addressing user support issues. The number of support tiers and the size of these teams can and will differ bases on size and complexity of the environment, user population, and/or resource constraints. Ensuring that issues get escalated promptly and efficiently is a key factor in the success of the support infrastructure. Internal processes and resources, as well as support agreements, play an important role in ensuring that user issues are addressed. 3

6 Suggested Training Matrix Level One (Help Desk) Recommended Skill Set Basic networking skill sets Good working knowledge of desktop and server Operating Systems Basic XenApp/XenDesktop Server knowledge Basic XenServer knowledge Basic Web Interface knowledge Recommended Citrix Certification CCA for Citrix XenDesktop CCA for Citrix XenApp CCA for Citrix XenServer Suggested Training Matrix Level Two (Senior Help Desk) Recommended Skill Set Core Infrastructure Component Support Intermediate XenApp/XenDesktop Server knowledge Intermediate XenServer Knowledge Intermediate Web Interface Knowledge Intermediate Citrix NetScaler Knowledge Intermediate Branch Repeater Knowledge Advanced Issue Resolution Updating and maintaining routing & troubleshooting scripts/checklists for the Help Desk *Disregard skill sets/certifications for technologies that are not applicable to environment Recommended Citrix Certification CCA for Citrix XenDesktop CCA for Citrix XenServer CCAA for Citrix XenApp Suggested Training Matrix Level Three (Citrix Administrators) Recommended Skill Set Core Infrastructure Component Support Advanced XenApp/XenDesktop Server knowledge Advanced XenServer Knowledge Advanced Web Interface Knowledge Advanced Citrix NetScaler Knowledge Advanced Branch Repeater Knowledge Advanced Issue Resolution *Disregard skill sets/certifications for technologies that are not applicable to environment Recommended Citrix Certification CCA for Citrix XenDesktop CCA for Citrix XenApp CCA for Citrix XenServer CCA for Citrix NetScaler CCA for Citrix Access Gateway CCA for Citrix Application Firewall Suggested Training Matrix Citrix Strategic Infrastructure/Solution Architects Recommended Skill Set Significant Infrastructure Design experience Microsoft Certification 3 Years of Experience with Citrix Products Recommended Citrix Certification CCIA for Virtualization CCEE for Virtualization 4

7 Please take the time to consider the following items representing key decisions that need to be made for supporting the new environment: How will the support structure be tiered? Will support be 24X7? How will support be accessed? What is the escalation process? Perhaps a flow chart will help. What is the Operational Level Agreement (OLA)? This is an agreement between the Citrix team and other IT teams such as Network, Active Directory, and Security. OLA is a commitment to provide a performance level for specific components of the infrastructure. What is the Service Level Agreement (SLA)? This is an external contract with the business users. How will adherence to these agreements be managed? Is there a Microsoft and Citrix support agreement? What level? Who are the contacts? Is there a hardware support agreement? Who are the people responsible for which Citrix components in the environment? How are administrative rights assigned? Help desk job aids - define customized job aids for the help desk associates, including help desk scripts, reference materials, and other items. These job aids are developed to ensure that help desk associates are able to expeditiously address common user questions and issues so as to increase user satisfaction. What help desk scripts will be provided? What support incident tracking tool will be used? How will troubleshooting flow through the levels of support? Will basic issues be troubleshot by Level 1? Administrative job aids - create customized job aids for the Citrix administration team including run books, user training materials, and other items. These job aids are developed to address documentation requirements while ensuring that the administrative team can focus on the initial rollout and day-to-day operations. Identify who will be responsible for creating run books of all aspects of the installation, who will create user training materials, and who will create new process documents. 5

8 User Training Prepare the users prior to rolling out the new virtual desktops by providing them with access to XenDesktop training. The training needs to provide the users with an understanding of the new access paradigm, what to expect during the rollout process, and contact information for any issues that may arise. One of the key successes in any migration is end-user training on the new product. Remember to develop both the user training (web, instructor-led, and/or brochures) and end-user notifications to communicate the different stages of the rollout. User acceptance is often predicated on how prepared the users are to accept the process changes being presented. Training is a key area that enables users to understand the new processes, as well as help desk and other resources. Consider the following items and make these important decisions for preparing users for the new environment: What training will be made available to end users both prior to the planned deployment and on an ongoing basis? Also include self-help resources that users may access independently. How will self-help resources be made available? Who will create what training materials? How will the training be delivered - online or instructor led? What are the expectations of the training being provided? What should users be able to do after completing the training? 6

9 Go Live Once everything has been communicated and people have been trained to either use the new environment or maintain and administer it, it is time to go live. Documentation and help-desk procedures need to be provided to the pilot users, focusing on what is different from the previous desktop model. Let the user know what is in it for them and what they can expect to be different with the new environment. Migration Pilot Proper planning and execution of migrating user data is critical for maintaining user satisfaction throughout the transition to a virtual desktop solution. Determine a path for upgrading older components to those identified in the XenDesktop design. This includes the process for migrating users from the current system to the new architecture. To have a successful transition from a physical to a virtual environment, the user s data must also move with the desktop. When moving user data into the XenDesktop environment, operating system settings, application settings and application data must be considered. The most successful migration will move all of the information seamlessly between the environments. To run a successful pilot, determine the items to be piloted, the groups of users in the pilot, and the structure to support those pilot users. The pilot group should be small enough to contain issues that arise but large enough to capture additional issues before a bigger user group goes live. Work to create and implement a solid and scalable architecture for the pilot environment, identify the expected outcomes, and create a process to utilize the results so that they are integrated back into the design and become a part of rollout. The rollout of the first group can be critical to the success and future delivery of virtual desktops throughout an organization. A smooth rollout can pave the way for future groups to easily encourage adoption. To accomplish this, Citrix Consulting recommends starting off with a pilot group approximately 10% of the user base testing 100% of the functionality with basic training on how to access the environment and anything they need to consider. Time should be allotted to both gather the feedback and implement the changes. Re-visit the user documentation created for the pilot users and make any updates for changes that were implemented to the pilot environment. This documentation will be used for the larger go-live effort. Please consider the following when planning the pilot: What are the success criteria for the pilot? Determine who will be the pilot users and the dates around the pilot. Have all special needs for power users and other user groups been identified to be verified successfully during pilot? How will the production approach be phased or big bang? What is the planned production start date? Will contractors be needed to support the rollout? Who is responsible for communications? 7

10 Rollout Support Rollout support includes the process with which issues encountered during the rollout phase will be managed and resolved. This section includes the process for how fixes can be added into the design and distributed to the environment during the rollout. Rollout support includes both initial rollout support as well as how fixes and updates will be handled in the new environment. Initial Rollout During the initial rollout, make sure that issues discovered during the production rollout are tracked and resolved. Listening to the user experiences during the rollout can provide excellent guidance for refining the rollout or lifecycle management processes. Consider providing a survey or hosting a user feedback meeting to find out about their experience so any negative items can be addressed for the future. Also, larger or critical environments should consider having additional live support staff available on the floor to answer user questions as they come up and track and resolve issues firsthand. Change Control A change control process, as it relates to the new XenDesktop environment, needs to be defined. Determine how software upgrades, server maintenance and related processes will be handled. A formalized process should exist for change control. Regular change control meetings, a documented process and tracking tool are key factors to success. Backup and Restoration Backup and restoration processes need to be defined for all components integrated in the new solution. These tasks are typically incremental based on need for recurrence. Each component of the XenDesktop Platinum edition and related support tasks are listed in the Operations and Maintenance guide. Disaster Management A full disaster recovery plan should have been created for the new environment during the design phase. In the plan, disaster management processes recommended for use were defined, including failover and redundancy. The Citrix environment should be extended and included in the planned disaster management solution to provide access to enterprise resources in the event of disaster. Ensuring that a reasonable amount of automated failover mechanisms and redundancy have been implemented minimizes user interruption. 8

11 Revision History Revision Change Description Updated By Date 1.0 Document Created Worldwide Consulting Solutions November 30, 2010 About Citrix Citrix Systems, Inc. (NASDAQ:CTXS) is the leading provider of virtualization, networking and software as a service technologies for more than 230,000 organizations worldwide. Its Citrix Delivery Center, Citrix Cloud Center (C3) and Citrix Online Services product families radically simplify computing for millions of users, delivering applications as an on-demand service to any user, in any location on any device. Citrix customers include the world s largest Internet companies, 99 percent of Fortune Global 500 enterprises, and hundreds of thousands of small businesses and prosumers worldwide. Citrix partners with over 10,000 companies worldwide in more than 100 countries. Founded in 1989, annual revenue in 2010 was $1.9 billion Citrix Systems, Inc. All rights reserved. Citrix, Access Gateway, Branch Repeater, Citrix Repeater, HDX, XenServer, XenApp, XenDesktop and Citrix Delivery Center are trademarks of Citrix Systems, Inc. and/or one or more of its subsidiaries, and may be registered in the United States Patent and Trademark Office and in other countries. All other trademarks and registered trademarks are property of their respective owners. 9

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