Workplace Join is a new feature in Windows Server 2012 R2  that lets you connect Windows and iOS devices to your network in state that allows more access than not being joined at all. Think of it like a middle ground between being domain joined and not joined: IT gets a measure insight and control over a given device connecting to the internal network but users don’t cede full control to IT of what might be personal device.

This aspect alone of Workplace Join had exciting possibilities. IT can control who has access to company resources based on application, user, device, and location. Employees get access to corporate applications and data from anywhere, on any Windows or iOS device. Employees also get single sign-on when using browser applications or enterprise applications.

As good as all of that is, Workplace Join can also do more than that. It can also make it easier for users to automatically enroll their devices with your company’s third-party MDM solution. Your mileage will vary based on the MDM solution you’re using, but take AirWatch Mobile Device Management as an example.

Users who join their devices to a corporate network via Workplace Join are also automatically prompted to enter specific (and customizable) data to complete their device enrollment with AirWatch as part of the Workplace Join process. This makes the process of getting users productive on new mobile devices faster and easier for everyone involved.

Here at Prowess Consulting, we’re testing Workplace Join in a business environment with a variety of devices. Stay tuned for upcoming posts detailing tips and tricks about Workplace Join.


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