From Chaos to Compliance:

How Microsoft Intune and Autopilot Lead The Way in The Future of Work

Laptops From The HBP Group vs. Online

98% of UK businesses saying that digital transformation is important to their future strategy…

With 98% of UK businesses saying that digital transformation is important to their future strategy, it’s not just your USP, products, or services that pose the difference between success against your competitors, it’s your technology.

In the modern workplace, businesses are harnessing technology to achieve unprecedented growth and prosperity. Remote and hybrid workforces have become the norm, and businesses need to be able to manage their security, compliance and onboarding processes in a way that is both efficient and effective.

As of June 2023, a remarkable 44% of the UK workforce has adapted to remote work. This shift, whether fully remote or in a hybrid arrangement, offers much greater flexibility and has revolutionised the way many businesses work. Nevertheless, it has also presented significant challenges for businesses. In the wake of this transformation, the imperative of ensuring the security, compliance and seamless onboarding of remote or hybrid workforces has become more critical than ever.

However, amidst a rapidly changing landscape, there’s a beacon of hope when it comes to simplifying and speeding up processes. Microsoft’s Intune and Autopilot solutions have emerged as essential tools for organisations to not only navigate the complexities of the digital age but thrive within them. These technologies safeguard your business against the ever-present threat of cyberattacks but also save you precious time, a commodity that, in the modern world, is just as valuable as currency.

In this white paper, we will explore the pivotal role that Microsoft Intune and Autopilot play in the digital transformation of businesses. We will delve into how these technologies can empower your organisation to achieve security, compliance and efficiency, all while managing remote and hybrid workforces with ease. We will provide actionable insights, practical strategies and customisable resources to help your business benefit from these powerful solutions.


What are Intune and Autopilot?

Both cloud-based, Intune provides a set of tools for managing devices, applications and data across all platforms. Autopilot is a deployment service that streamlines the process of setting up and configuring new devices, after they’ve been setup with Intune – the two work in tandem.

Traditionally, the process of setting up and managing devices in your business can be time-consuming and prone to hiccups. It requires your IT team to setup and configure each individual machine – ensuring all security settings are configured correctly step-by-step, one setting after another, ensuring all updates happen, then adding all of the necessary apps which are required for the intended user (which can be different on a team-by-team basis.) However, with Intune and Autopilot working together, it becomes a far more seamless experience.

Whether it’s configuring laptops, smartphones, or tablets, these two software solutions make sure that your devices are set up just the way you want them. You can establish consistent configurations, security settings and software installations across all devices. This uniformity not only reduces the chances of errors but also makes it easier to manage your IT environment.

Intune and Autopilot help companies deal with common IT challenges, like lengthy and repetitive onboarding processes, which take up huge amounts of time and can leave systems open to cyber risks if there’s no consistency in setup, or you’re relying on an IT team to meticulously configure every single individual setting (over and over!) With Intune, your IT team or partner can create specific profiles for users or teams to make device roll out simple and consistent. You can manage, configure, update and protect the devices that your organisation uses, such as computers, laptops, tablets and phones. You can do this by managing, configuring, protecting and updating the apps that you need – all while ensuring that devices are compliant with your business’ security requirements. Once you have created your settings and determined which apps are required and which security settings must be setup, you can store them as profiles, ready for rollout by Autopilot, so there’s no need to ensure each individual device is configured one-by-one, meaning no important settings get missed.

With Autopilot, users receive a new and boxed device, directly from a supplier, or a repurposed device from their IT team or partner. They simply unbox it, login and start using it. Within minutes, Autopilot automatically installs the apps and settings. IT never has to physically touch the device, so configuration and setup can be done from anywhere. Instead of maintaining “images” and handling devices, your IT team or partner just sets them up in Microsoft Intune; they add any apps or settings and choose a setup experience. Then they can be shipped directly to users – whether in the office, at home, or travelling with work.

They were created to address the demand that a hybrid workforce brings. With people working in a variety of locations and in and out of the office, being able to ensure cybersecurity demands are met and all your company devices are protected is essential.

What’s more, they work as part of your existing Microsoft 365 Premium licence, so businesses can take advantage of these powerful tools without incurring a hefty cost.

How do they work together in practice?

Imagine an SME business with 150 employees (let’s call them Company X), a mix of office-based and remote workers. They’ve recently adopted a hybrid work model and device security is a top priority for them due to the increasing cybersecurity threats. They’ve also faced challenges in the past with the time-consuming and inconsistent process of setting up new devices for their employees.

The business wants to streamline the device provisioning process, improve device security and ensure a consistent user experience for both office-based and remote employees. They decide to leverage Microsoft Intune and Autopilot to achieve these goals.

How Intune and Autopilot work together:

  1. Profile configuration with Intune: Company X’s IT team, with the help of their managed service provider, uses Microsoft Intune to create device and user profiles. They define security policies, app configurations and other settings tailored to specific departments or user roles. For instance, they ensure that BitLocker encryption and Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA) are enabled for all devices and each team has a specific profile which varies from one to the next, for example, Marketing have design apps and finance have their accounting software.
  2. Device procurement: When Company X acquires new devices, whether directly from suppliers or repurposes existing ones, they are shipped to employees’ locations, whether at the office, at home, or travelling with work.
  3. Device setup: Employees receive their new devices, unbox them and power them on. Autopilot takes over the device setup process. It automatically connects the device to the internet and communicates with Intune.
  4. Profile and app deployment: Intune’s predefined profiles and settings are applied to the device and required apps are automatically installed. This includes productivity software, security tools and any other applications necessary for the job.
  5. User-friendly experience: Employees simply need to go through a few simple setup steps, such as setting up their password and MFA. Autopilot ensures that all the predefined policies and security settings are in place, providing a secure and consistent user experience. It also reduces the time and effort needed for employees to get started with their new devices.
  6. Remote configuration: Even for employees working in remote locations, as long as they have an internet connection, Autopilot can set up their devices quickly, ensuring that corporate data remains protected.

Intune and Autopilot enables your IT team or partner to deliver ready-to-go devices directly to users, frees up IT hours which can better spent elsewhere and improves employee satisfaction; and a happy team is a productive one (seriously, a study by the iOpener Institute based in Oxford UK found that employees who are happiest at work report being “on task” 80% of their working week!)

Autopilot Lifecycle

Image source

Some key features of this collaboration include:

  • Device Management: Microsoft Intune simplifies the management of devices, including smartphones and tablets, across your business through a centralised web dashboard. It includes app deployment, updates and removal capabilities. You can connect to and distribute apps from your private app stores, enable Microsoft 365 apps, deploy Windows apps, create app protection policies and you can manage access to apps and their data. In short, it means you have complete control over apps on devices and any patches that are required on those apps or devices, without the need to configure each individual machine.
  • Mobile Device and Application Management: Intune offers comprehensive control over mobile devices, whether they are company-owned or bring-your-own-device (BYOD). You can manage app updates, implement protection policies and access them remotely. According to a study by Gartner, more than 50% of businesses are expected to adopt MDM solutions for their mobile devices by 2023 to enhance security and control.
  • Policies: Enhance security with Intune by enforcing access policies, ensuring compliance with security guidelines like device compliance and identity verification. Customise policies for different teams as needed. According to the 2021 Verizon Data Breach Investigations Report, 61% of data breaches involved credential theft and social attacks. Conditional access can help prevent these types of attacks by enforcing strong identity verification policies, for example, rescinding access to employees who are outside of the UK.
  • Data Protection: Protect your organisation’s data on mobile devices with Intune’s data protection services, including app protection policies, data loss prevention (DLP), and remote wipe capabilities. Shockingly, a Verizon report found that 43% of data breaches were the result of web application vulnerabilities, including phishing and ransomware attacks.
  • Reporting and Monitoring: Gain insights into mobile device and application usage, compliance status, and security issues through Intune’s reporting and monitoring features, meaning you can check for devices that are missing updates, or protection policies.
  • Streamlined rollout: Autopilot utilises Intune and other Microsoft policies to set up and pre-configure new devices. Doing so gets the devices ready for productive use without needing an IT professional to sign into it. Autopilot is used for Windows devices and can be used to reset, repurpose and recover devices.

Keep scrolling to see how they can elevate your business processes…

Related Blog Post:Why Are Microsoft Intune and Autopilot Crucial
to a Modern Workplace?

Wondering what the advantages are of adopting a modern workplace, or Intune and Autopilot into your modern workplace? Our blog covers what the modern workplace is, the benefits to you and your teams, how to implement and how to overcome the challenges of adopting a modern workplace with the help of Intune and Autopilot.

Read it here >

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According to the government’s Cyber Security Breaches Survey 2023, 34% of businesses that had a cyber security breach or attack in the last 12 months said they lost sensitive data…


How Can Intune and Autopilot Elevate Your Business Processes?

The compliance implications for you and your teams.

One of the most significant challenges businesses face in this ever-evolving technological landscape is ensuring compliance across a diverse range of devices and applications. Compliance in this context refers to adhering to industry regulations, any of your company policies and security standards, which are crucial for data protection and maintaining the integrity of your business operations. Microsoft Intune and Autopilot address these challenges head-on.

Intune simplifies the complex task of maintaining compliance across various platforms. It enables your organisation to set and enforce policies that ensure all devices meet the required security and configuration standards and roll out patches to all devices, regardless of device location. You might ask why this is so important? Without tools such as Intune and Autopilot, you rely on your teams to perform repetitive tasks, such as performing all individual security checks during an initial setup, which are prone to human error. Without the correct security settings in place, you open your business up to security threats and your organisation may remain unaware of a violation until it’s too late, leaving business operations and data integrity at risk. Microsoft Intune and Autopilot help prevent such situations by proactively enforcing security and configuration policies, ensuring a more robust and consistent approach.

Regarding mobile device management, consider a situation where your business has a combination of Windows, iOS, and Android devices. Without a unified solution like Intune, ensuring consistent compliance would be a mammoth task. But with Intune, you can define and enforce security and compliance policies uniformly across all these platforms, thus mitigating compatibility issues and minimising the risk of data breaches. In this way, Intune acts as a reliable extension to cyber security systems, ensuring that your organisation remains in adherence to security regulations, regardless of the device diversity within your workforce.

Then there’s the issue of compatibility issues across applications. You may have your Marketing or design teams working on a project together on what they believe to be the same system, but actually one person is using an application which is two versions behind everyone else – that poses issues when it comes to saving, opening and working on documents together, putting a blocker there for collaborative working and productivity.

Added security for your peace of mind – saving your reputation and your pocket.

In today’s digital landscape, cybersecurity is non-negotiable. With the UK government finding that following a cyber-attack, 28% of businesses lost data, 26% experienced disruption to their business operations, 22% suffered financial losses and 19% suffered damage to their reputation, you can see why.

Businesses need robust and dependable tools to keep their systems secure from the ever-evolving threat landscape. Microsoft Intune and Autopilot offer a seamless approach to security, making it simple and efficient.

Intune streamlines the process of managing device security through automatic updates and patch rollouts. These crucial tasks are handled from a centralised dashboard manged by your IT team or partner, eliminating the need for time-consuming, manual configurations on individual devices. With Intune, you can ensure that all corporate devices are up to date with the latest security patches, reducing vulnerability to potential cyberattacks.

Furthermore, Intune enhances security with conditional access policies. By customising access based on user groups and enforcing strict identity verification measures, your organisation can shield itself from the increasing threat of credential theft and social attacks. These measures align with best practice security guidelines and offer a proactive approach to safeguarding sensitive data.

Usability and time savings.

Time is of the essence in the fast-paced business world, and Intune and Autopilot make everything about device setup and management faster. For instance, with Microsoft Intune, you can benefit from centralised device management through a single dashboard. This eliminates the tedious task of configuring each device individually, saving hours of work for you internal or external IT team. Consider the scenario of managing updates and patches; Intune streamlines this process, ensuring consistent and efficient handling. By automating app deployment, including Windows apps and app access management, or keeping applications up to date, you save valuable time and reduce the risk of errors.

For a specific time-saving example, let’s say you have a fleet of 100 devices. Without Intune, updating these devices individually would be labour-intensive and time-consuming. With Intune, this process can be automated, cutting down the time it takes to ensure all devices are up to date from potentially days of work to just a few hours.

Additionally, Intune allows you to enforce uniform security policies across all devices, promoting compliance and reducing vulnerabilities. This not only safeguards your data but also frees up your IT team to focus on strategic tasks and provide direct support to employees.

Meanwhile, Microsoft Autopilot simplifies device provisioning and configuration, making the setup of new devices much faster and easier. Think about the time saved when onboarding new employees. Autopilot reduces the workload on your IT personnel, ensuring that new hires can start using their devices immediately, enhancing productivity and minimising downtime. In a scenario without Autopilot, it could take hours or even days to configure a new device for a new employee.

These benefits contribute to a more efficient and user-friendly device management experience, ultimately enhancing the usability and productivity of your business operations.


What Does All of This Mean For My Business, Practically?

Here’s some use case examples…

In the following section, we’ll delve into practical use cases that illustrate how Microsoft Intune and Autopilot can be the cornerstone of your organisation’s success. We’ll explore their role in granting you peace of mind through enhanced security, making employee onboarding and device setup a seamless experience and achieving the coveted balance of accessibility and security through conditional access policies. These scenarios demonstrate the tangible benefits that these solutions offer.


Using conditional access to ensure secure access for hybrid sales teams.

Firstly, what is conditional access? It’s a security feature that allows organisations to control access to its cloud-based resources based on specific conditions or policies. Conditional access can be used to ensure that only authorised users can access sensitive data or applications and that they are doing so from secure devices and locations. With conditional access, an organisation can set up policies that determine who can access certain resources and under what conditions.

These can be things such as:

  • User identity: The user’s identity can be verified through credentials like a password, multi-factor authentication, or biometric authentication.
  • Device health: The device’s health and compliance can be checked to ensure that it meets the organisation’s security standards, such as an active firewall or encryption.
  • Network location: The user’s location and the network they are accessing the resources from can be evaluated to ensure that they are accessing the resources from a trusted and secure network. You may wish to, for example, block locations.
  • App used: The application that the user is using to access the resource can be evaluated to ensure that only trusted and approved apps are being used.

Conditional access helps organisations to protect their resources and data by ensuring that users can only access them under the appropriate conditions. This helps to prevent unauthorised access to sensitive information, even if user credentials are compromised. Additionally, conditional access helps organisations enforce compliance and regulatory standards by controlling access to data based on specific policies. It means you get a fully consistent approach; you know every device is configured to set, rigorous policies, and the automated roll-outs take out the human element, so no forgetting any crucial setup steps.

How does that work in practice:

Use Case: A distribution company relies on a dispersed sales force to reach clients and maintain relationships. These sales representatives need access to critical customer data and sales applications from the office and whilst on-the-go via personal devices, but the company faces significant security risks when granting remote access to sensitive information.

Solution: Microsoft Intune’s conditional access policies come to the rescue. The company configures strict access policies that apply when sales representatives attempt to access customer data and sales applications from their personal devices. These policies mandate multifactor authentication and device compliance checks. Only devices meeting the company’s security standards, such as multi-factor authentication and encryption, gain access.

Outcome: With conditional access through Intune, the distribution company ensures secure access to customer data for its hybrid sales teams. This significantly reduces the risk of data breaches and unauthorised access to sensitive information. Sales representatives can work from their preferred devices, while the company maintains peace of mind, knowing that security measures are in place. They not only improve security but also empower sales teams to be more productive and responsive to clients, ultimately driving increased sales and customer satisfaction. The one thing that you can guarantee with Intune, that you cannot traditionally do, is ensure consistency. With Intune, you can be confident that every single device enrolled in your environment has all of the necessary configurations and settings applied, so no device will slip under the radar and leave you open to cyber risk.

Use Case 1 Image


Consistent, efficient, touchless employee onboarding for remote or hybrid workforces.

Whilst remote and hybrid working slowly became the norm from 2020, many businesses didn’t take heed of how important it was that technologies and processes were updated in line with the changing way of working. One particular area for improvement is the employee onboarding experience (in particular for those who work remotely or those with satellite offices). Given 82% of employees who have a positive onboarding experience are more likely to stay with their company for at least three years, it’s an important element to get right.

Microsoft Intune and Autopilot are invaluable tools for streamlining the onboarding process of new employees in a business. They offer a touchless and highly efficient approach that ensures a consistent, secure and user-friendly experience, ultimately contributing to happier teams.

By automating and standardising device deployment, Intune and Autopilot eliminate the potential for human error and guarantee that every new starter receives a company-compliant setup. This means that critical software, security configurations and applications are in place from the moment the device is powered on.

The deployment feature is especially beneficial, as it reduces the need for IT staff to be physically present during the onboarding process. Employees can easily set up their devices, even if they’re working remotely or in different locations, thanks to remote configuration capabilities.

So whether your new starter works in sales, finance, marketing or development, their machine is setup with their profiles and they can hit the ground running with the right applications from the get-go.

The overall result is not only a faster onboarding process but also cost savings due to the reduced administrative workload and improved user experience. And on the rare, but possible, occasion you may forget to tell your managed service provider about a new starter who joins imminently, you don’t need to worry as device setup and deployment has been reduced from a several-weeks-long job, to a fraction of that.

A smooth, frustration-free initial experience sets a positive tone for new employees, leading to a more productive and satisfied workforce.

How does that work in practice:

Use Case: A professional services firm frequently hires new employees and deploys them across various UK locations. Ensuring a smooth onboarding process for remote workers while maintaining security is a significant challenge.

Solution: Microsoft Autopilot simplifies the provisioning and setup of new devices. The firm can pre-configure devices with company-specific settings and applications (called profiles), ensuring that each employee receives a standardised and secure computing environment, regardless of their location. Microsoft Intune complements this by managing device security and access. Conditional access policies allow for secure, remote onboarding, with employees gaining access to company resources only when specific criteria are met.

Outcome: With Intune and Autopilot, the professional services firm can onboard new employees efficiently, reduce the workload on IT and maintain a consistent security posture. This improves the employee experience, as they receive ready-to-use devices and it reduces the risk of misconfigurations that could lead to security vulnerabilities. As a result, the organisation can quickly deploy resources to meet client demands and maintain a high standard of service. Without Intune, you can have inconsistent, time-consuming processes, with expensive engineers spending a great deal of time meticulously configuring devices, which is time that can otherwise be spent elsewhere, like supporting your employees.

Use Case 2 Image


Enhanced data security and compliance for those businesses whose data is highly-sensitive.

In an age where data is a precious asset, safeguarding it has never been more critical. Businesses dealing with highly-sensitive information, such as healthcare records, financial data, or personal identifiable information (PII), must go to great lengths to ensure data security and regulatory compliance.

Intune’s security features, combined with conditional access policies, guarantee that only authorised personnel can access sensitive data. It enforces multi-factor authentication and device health checks to ensure that data access occurs under the most stringent security conditions. In case a device is lost or stolen, remote wipe capabilities come into play, allowing for the quick and efficient removal of sensitive information from the device.

How does that work in practice:

Use Case: A healthcare organisation with strict regulatory requirements needs to secure patient data across a diverse range of devices used by healthcare professionals. Ensuring compliance with healthcare data protection regulations, such as the Data Protection Act (DPA), General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and the Common Law Duty of Confidentiality (CLDC) in the UK, is a top priority.

Solution: Microsoft Intune enables the organisation to implement comprehensive security policies across all devices, from doctors’ smartphones to administrative staff’s laptops. It ensures that all devices meet stringent security standards, like encryption, password policies and remote data wipe capabilities. Additionally, Intune enforces app protection policies, preventing the unauthorised sharing of sensitive patient data. Through conditional access, it ensures only authorised personnel can access patient records.

Outcome: By investing in Intune and Autopilot, the healthcare organisation achieves a higher level of data security and regulatory compliance. In the event of a security breach, the organisation can demonstrate diligent security measures like wiping devices of data, potentially reducing legal liabilities and reputational damage. More than that, through Intune’s reporting capabilities that you otherwise wouldn’t have, you can be notified of any devices that don’t meet regulation, or of any missed updates or configuration, ensuring all devices are up to date and protected, at all times.

Use Case 3 Image


Whilst it’s not the be-all and end-all, cost matters too – to every business.

The value of solutions such as Microsoft Intune and Autopilot goes far beyond mere cost savings. While monetary value is a crucial aspect of any business strategy, the true strength of these tools is their transformative impact on your organisation’s day-to-day operations. However, while we stress the far-reaching benefits of Microsoft Intune and Autopilot that extend beyond cost savings, we acknowledge that finances matter to every business. With any new piece of technology, you can always expect an initial investment to ensure it is correctly setup and functions exactly the way it was intended.

What Intune and Autopilot offer are a practical approach that balances the initial costs with long-term gains. Their automation and standardisation reduce administrative workloads, resulting in operational cost savings. Additionally, the improved user experience and the rapid onboarding of employees enhance productivity and indirectly contribute to revenue.

Where you can start to identify the cost benefits of Intune and Autopilot are when you consider the initial investment versus what you currently contribute to device setup costs.

How does that work in practice:

Use Case: A property firm has a team of 45 employees and has recently acquired another business, with 10 employees. The acquired team of 10 require new devices which will need to be properly setup and configured in line with the property firms security policies, as well as data and application access. At present, the firm pay their current IT partner £500 per user device setup.

Solution: The initial investment for the property firm to setup and use Intune and Autopilot is £5,000. After initial consultation and planning, that investment would ensure device enrolment and configuration of user and device profiles for easy onboarding of all devices, security policies, compliance configurations and software deployment strategies to safeguard the organisation’s data and maintain industry and regulatory compliance. As well as relevant user training and documentation to ensure staff can effectively use the tools.

Outcome: Instead of paying their IT partner £500 to have an expert properly configure their 10 devices, ensuring all of the relevant updates are applied and applications added and updated for use, they invest in Microsoft Intune and Autopilot and break even on the initial investment. Every configuration beyond that is included in the costs they’ve already outlaid and ensure that all of their devices can be maintained, updated and patched as part of the service from there on out; all that would be left to do is add the new starter to their support contract and buy their device! All in all, they’re protecting their valuable data, ensuring a smooth onboarding for their 10 new employees and maintaining a strong security posture.

Use Case 4 Image


In conclusion, as the landscape of business continues to evolve, the pivotal role of technology in shaping success cannot be overstated. With remote and hybrid workforces now the norm, the need for streamlined, efficient, and secure processes has never been more critical. This is where Microsoft Intune and Autopilot come to the forefront, not just as technological solutions but as enablers of your business’ success.

These powerful tools offer a multifaceted approach that goes beyond cybersecurity. They are the key to of your organisation’s security, offer you a simple way to save huge amounts of time and they’ll be a driver of operational efficiency. By streamlining device management, Intune and Autopilot ensure that your business operates smoothly, secure , and efficiently, allowing you to focus on what truly matters – growth and success.

And the best part? These tools are not just an added expense; they are part of your existing Microsoft 365 Premium license, ensuring that you can leverage their power without incurring a huge additional cost.

In a world where data security is non-negotiable, where remote work is the new normal, where the efficiency of your operations defines your success, Microsoft Intune and Autopilot are two incredibly powerful tools to add to your belt. They are more than just technological solutions; they are the foundation upon which you can build a future of compliance, streamlined operations and robust security.

With Intune and Autopilot by your side, your business can not only navigate the complexities of the digital age but also surge ahead, embracing growth with confidence. So, don’t just protect your organisation – elevate it to new heights of productivity and success. Discover how Microsoft Intune and Autopilot can be the catalyst for your organisation’s transformation.

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