CxO Decision Brief: The Value of Secure Endpoint Management Automation

Solution Value Icon

Solution Overview

From laptops to IoT sensors, endpoints are essential in every IT infrastructure. Endpoint management solutions ease complexity and reduce the risk posed by poorly managed devices. Syxsense offers an innovative solution to tackle this challenge, serving as a secure endpoint automation platform that reduces costs, improves end-user experience, and lessens cyber risk.

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Endpoint management confers a number of critical benefits, including:

  • Improved endpoint observability and management.
  • Reduced operational overhead.
  • Reduced cybersecurity risk.
  • Improved user support and experience.
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Poorly managed devices can produce high operational costs and poor user experience. But the most significant threat comes from poorly secured devices that open your company to attack and can pose an existential threat to your organization.

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A managed and automated solution significantly changes the way organizations deliver endpoint services. New processes around end-user support and endpoint enrollment (including training), and new policies around security and management, must be set.

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Adopting endpoint management will disrupt existing environments, as managing device enrollment and limiting user impact can be complex.

Organizations that operate in restrictive environments with strict controls on endpoint operations may struggle to find endpoint management tools with the capabilities they require.

1. Solution Value

This GigaOm CxO Decision Brief was commissioned by Syxsense.

One of the biggest IT investments any organization makes is in its endpoint—from servers and desktops to IoT. Poorly managed endpoints can have significant negative impacts on the business, from poor user experience to security vulnerabilities that lead to cyber risk. However, managing an endpoint estate is operationally complex and expensive.

Endpoint management tools offer an answer; however, selecting the right one is critical because a poorly fit solution can produce damaging outcomes, like poor workflows, difficult security controls, and ineffective vulnerability management. All these combine to add more work and frustration for operations staff and end users.

Syxsense addresses these challenges with its endpoint, vulnerability, and security management platform, which unifies ITOps and SecOps to reduce operational complexity, improve security, and increase observability. At the heart of the platform is its automation technology, Syxsense Cortex, which enables IT and security operations teams to design and build playbooks that automate labor-intensive tasks like patching, vulnerability management, security remediation, and remote monitoring and management. Automated identification and remediation of missing patches or vulnerabilities reduces risk, improves efficiency, lowers costs, and improves the experience for operations teams and users alike.

2. Urgency and Risk

Endpoints act as the interface between users, systems, and data. When poorly managed, they create significant issues, including:

  • Increased cybersecurity risk: Poorly patched, secured, and controlled devices introduce vulnerability and security risk to organizations, and savvy attackers know this, targeting these endpoints with sophisticated techniques to automate and scale attacks.
  • Poor operational efficiency: Manual management of a remote device estate can consume IT time and budget resources best spent elsewhere.
  • Poor user experience: Poorly patched, monitored, maintained, and supported machines lead to a range of issues for users, including substandard performance, poor reliability, and frustrations due to lack of effective and efficient support.

This GigaOm CxO Decision Brief shows how endpoint management ensures devices are operationally optimized and protects against degraded user efficiency and poor overall business performance.


Adopting a comprehensive endpoint management solution is not trivial, and businesses must be prepared for the work involved. Plan for the following:

  • Cost of device enrollment
  • Impact on end-user experience with enhanced security
  • The challenge of enhanced management in environments with restrictions on endpoint use and access
  • Issues with custom device requirements
  • Inconsistent control of the environment in work-from-home/remote work/BYOD scenarios

The cost of migration and deployment can be high, and project timelines long. Businesses must plan to deal with the risk this poses.

3. Benefits

With enhanced security and automation, organizations can realize several benefits, key among them:

  • Improved vulnerability insight: Real-time visibility lets organizations quickly identify risk and prioritize addressing it. It also provides a baseline to measure the effectiveness of vulnerability management and mitigation.
  • Automated patching: Automated patch management for devices and applications should be a top priority for any organization. Rapid identification and mitigation of vulnerabilities sharply reduces attack surface and business risk.
  • User experience: Detailed insight into device performance and end-user experience can help a business more proactively manage end-user issues. End-user experience scoring allows organizations to tackle issues and improve end-user experience and efficiency.
  • Operational automation: Endpoint management is full of costly repetitive tasks. Automating these tasks can accelerate resolution, reduce risk, ease alert fatigue, and free up operations staff for more high-value work, driving efficiency enhancements and cost savings.
  • Cohesive management: Endpoint estates are large and complex, which can lead to fragmented and inefficient management that spikes both cost and risk. Replacing this siloed approach with a cohesive platform that manages all endpoints yields improvements across asset and risk management, driving efficiency gains and operational cost reductions.

4. Best Practices

Endpoint management projects take time and require coordination with users to help with enrollment. Regardless of whether these are fully managed endpoints or part of a BYOD strategy, organizations must find ways to ease the adoption burden. Steps to successful adoption of an endpoint management solution include the following:

  • To help with new device enrollment, configure integrations with automated device enrollment platforms like Apple Business Manager, Android Enterprise, and Windows Autopilot.
  • Migrating can be challenging and impactful on users and operations teams alike. Some tools can help with automation, assisting for example in deploying new integration agents while automating the removal of existing ones. Or customers can consider migration platforms that integrate between source and target solutions and help automate the migration between the two.
  • For enrollment plans that include test devices and user pilot groups, the entire process must be understood and well-tested before large-scale enrollment, ensuring that users can quickly return to normal operations.
  • Vulnerability and patch management platforms will require an assessment and patching strategy. Organizations should understand the requirements for patching and vulnerability mitigation and determine how to best roll it out and whether it can be fully automated. Companies should also consider patching rollback procedures in case patching fails.
  • When developing automation, first identify automation candidates and start with simple processes. These processes should be tested thoroughly before a broader rollout.

5. Organizational Impact

Robust endpoint management will impact user experience, and organizations must prepare for this. First, consider solution deployment. While many platforms are deployed as SaaS, the bigger impact comes from the enrollment of devices, which affects users and introduces risk and interruption. Migration from one endpoint management platform to another is a particular challenge, adding the need to “unenroll” devices before adding them to the new platform.

Second, endpoint management will enforce new restrictions and controls on endpoint devices, which may create concerns about increased scrutiny of user activities–something organizations should be prepared to quell. Attention must also be placed on how new controls and practices impact the end-user experience. Thorough testing of a policy rollout is recommended, working first with well-defined initial test groups before moving on to wider pilot groups. Testing should be broadened beyond technical staff—a wide range of users from across an organization must be part of this to fully understand the impact of change.

Proper research, planning, training, and development are all vital to a successful rollout of automation services. Failure can have serious consequences, with rogue automations leading to service interruptions, heightened risk, and degraded user efficiency. Organizations should assess the impact of adopting automated endpoint management on their information security management policies and procedures and be ready to update them accordingly.

People Impact

Adopting any new technology introduces risks for those operating it and for those using it, and this is doubly true when introducing automation and enhanced security.

Automation, in particular, can impact operations teams that must not only learn the new skill but must also be assured that automation will not affect their jobs.

Consider the following to prepare internal teams and end users:

  • Training is essential to ensure that the new tool is well adopted. For those new to endpoint management, this should include familiarization with the concepts of management and security.
  • For those migrating to a new platform, explore the differences in the new platform, and map existing capabilities to those on the new platform. Prepare guides for operations staff on how to carry out existing tasks on the new platform.
  • Devise a communications program to inform end users of the new platform. They must be informed of expected changes, understand the platform enrollment process, and any impacts to usual operations they should expect.
  • Prioritize automation preparation. While Syxsense offers a no-code automation platform, companies should invest in training their teams on how to use the platform and have a robust testing plan before automation is rolled out at scale.

Investment Outlook

Endpoint management can vary in price depending on capability. Charges are usually based on the number of users or devices. Many modern solutions like Syxsense are delivered as SaaS and are available on a subscription licensing model, usually under monthly or annual contracts. They are likely to be of similar magnitude to other endpoint tools such as EDR. It should be noted that Syxsense is a solution aimed at mid-sized and large enterprises and is priced for those markets.

Syxsense specifically offers licensing in three tiers depending on functional requirements.

  • Syxsense manage: Provides visibility, management, and patching of enterprise IT assets. Available for Windows, Mac, Linux, iOS, and Android.
  • Syxsense secure: Adds security configuration vulnerability scanning, remote monitoring, and the Cortex no-code automation platform.
  • Sysense enterprise: Adds pre-built security vulnerability remediations; a zero-trust evaluation engine (policy-based) to vet, verify, and validate devices; and an open API to enable data integrations across a range of management and security tools.

Mobile device management is included in Enterprise and offered as an add-on for Secure.

The Syxsense platform introduces several potential areas for cost reduction.

  • Vulnerability scanning and patch management consolidation: Can replace existing tools in this space.
  • Automation: Cortex can automate repetitive, time-consuming, and costly tasks. Can integrate with asset and service management platforms to improve efficiency.
  • Enhanced remote support: Can reduce response times and increase speed to resolution for end users.

However, processes will be needed to deliver these, and organizations should consider the development cost.

Syxsense typically offers free onboarding and training. For more complex engagements (e.g., significant integrations), a small fee may be charged. Deployment professional services can be purchased but are often unnecessary.

6. Solution Timeline

Organizations with a few hundred devices should expect a simple project to take less than two months to complete. Larger projects, with 10,000 or more devices, can take up to six months, especially for those migrating from existing solutions and those with a large mobile device estate.

Plan, Test, Deploy

Partners that can help an organization efficiently and effectively deploy its endpoint management solution provide significant value and can, in some cases, be the difference between successful adoption and project failure. Syxsense offers a robust approach to support customers. This can be broadly categorized across the following three stages.

Plan: Within a week of signing a contract, the Syxsense sales team will hand over to the onboarding team to understand the objectives captured by the sales team during procurement. The onboarding team schedules a kickoff meeting with the customer to review, clarify, and define their objectives and key success criteria. The onboarding team is measured by their ability to meet key objectives and demonstrate corresponding success metrics within 30 days.

Test: After kickoff, the onboarding team works with the customer to identify initial issues and test processes such as device onboarding, group and site creation, and software deployment. Patchings strategies are also tested. Syxsense agents are tested to ensure proper installation across a representative sample of the environment.

Deploy: Deployment is deemed successful when all the customer’s objectives are met. This includes all agents have been deployed and are operating correctly without disturbing users, and key technical customer staff have signed off on patching strategy.

Syxsense typically aims to deploy all purchased agents within 90 days of kick-off and says it has an ongoing track record of meeting this goal 95% of the time. While this can change based on customer needs, the aggressive timeline enables a rapid rollout and effective adoption.

Future Considerations

Over the next 12 to 36 months organizations can expect digital experience monitoring and AI to advance the space.

Already adopted in some organizations as a separate solution, digital experience monitoring is poised to become a standard part of endpoint management. It addresses application performance, change impacts, and user perception of performance.

Meanwhile, AI is expected to help improve management, more quickly identify anomalous behavior in terms of performance and risk, and help identify trends to improve estate management. AI should also ease development of playbooks and complex workflows.

7. Analyst’s Take

Endpoints are a big investment for companies and present a costly management overhead. However, while management can be complex, poorly managed endpoints present significant risks across cost and user satisfaction. It will also introduce significant cyber risk.

Syxsense offers an innovative solution to address endpoint management challenges. Its vulnerability and patching automation will help reduce overhead and improve security and performance. Its automation platform will cut repetitive and time-consuming tasks, improve service efficiency, and free operational staff to carry out more high-value work.

Adopting endpoint management is not a trivial undertaking, but the value and benefit of a strong platform will far outweigh the costs and time commitment of adoption.

8. Report Methodology

This GigaOm CxO Decision Brief analyzes a specific technology and related solution to provide executive decision-makers with the information they need to drive successful IT strategies that align with the business. The report is focused on large impact zones that are often overlooked in technical research, yielding enhanced insight and mitigating risk. We work closely with vendors to identify the value and benefits of specific solutions, and to lay out best practices that enable organizations to drive a successful decision process.

9. About Paul Stringfellow

Paul Stringfellow has more than 25 years of experience in the IT industry helping organizations of all kinds and sizes use technology to deliver strong business outcomes. Today, that work focuses mainly on helping enterprises understand how to manage their data to ensure it is protected, secure, compliant, and available. He is still very much a “hands-on” practitioner and continues to be involved in a diverse range of data projects. Paul has been recognized across the industry and has spoken at many industry, vendor, and community events. He writes for a number of industry publications to share his enthusiasm for technology and to help others realize its value.

Paul hosts his own enterprise technology webcast and writes regularly on his blog.

10. About GigaOm

GigaOm provides technical, operational, and business advice for IT’s strategic digital enterprise and business initiatives. Enterprise business leaders, CIOs, and technology organizations partner with GigaOm for practical, actionable, strategic, and visionary advice for modernizing and transforming their business. GigaOm’s advice empowers enterprises to successfully compete in an increasingly complicated business atmosphere that requires a solid understanding of constantly changing customer demands.

GigaOm works directly with enterprises both inside and outside of the IT organization to apply proven research and methodologies designed to avoid pitfalls and roadblocks while balancing risk and innovation. Research methodologies include but are not limited to adoption and benchmarking surveys, use cases, interviews, ROI/TCO, market landscapes, strategic trends, and technical benchmarks. Our analysts possess 20+ years of experience advising a spectrum of clients from early adopters to mainstream enterprises.

GigaOm’s perspective is that of the unbiased enterprise practitioner. Through this perspective, GigaOm connects with engaged and loyal subscribers on a deep and meaningful level.

11. Copyright

© Knowingly, Inc. 2024 "CxO Decision Brief: The Value of Secure Endpoint Management Automation" is a trademark of Knowingly, Inc. For permission to reproduce this report, please contact