Portfolio #other
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24 February 2024
Tim Whiteley

Inevidesk, the high-performance virtual desktop empowering organisations

As part of our quick founder questions series - or QFQs - we spoke to Tim Whiteley, Co-Founder of Inevidesk, about VDI, computing power and work-life balance.

What was the catalyst for launching Inevidesk?

My co-founders and I have all worked in IT within the architecture, engineering, and construction (AEC) industry for around two decades. We had long realised the benefits that virtual desktop technology (VDI) could bring to organisations, but our experience was that existing solutions were too expensive for most and lacked the performance they needed.

With a background in open-source technology and developing our own services, we thought – why don’t we develop a solution ourselves? By 2019, we had an early version of the Inevidesk platform that we tested with existing clients to get their feedback. It was hugely positive, and so we then spent a year developing the service…

And that’s when the pandemic hit, changing things quite a lot. We had originally thought it would take around five-to-10-years to really establish ourselves, but Covid catapulted our timeline forward. Working practices changed overnight and organisations needed tech that could better support the new paradigm of remote and hybrid working.

Tell me about the business – what it is, what it aims to achieve, who you work with, how you reach customers and so on?

Inevidesk is the first high-performance virtual desktop designed to meet the specific needs of the AEC industry, empowering organisations like Hopkins Architects, Cullinan Studio and Elevate Everywhere to improve their agility, productivity, and competitiveness.

Unlike companies that work only within Google, Microsoft or other relatively undemanding desktop apps, AEC organisations work with software and programmes that require much more computing power than the average laptop or desktop computer can provide.

Organisations have traditionally used fixed, office-based workstations that limit the flexibility of employees. Or they jump into contracts with big vendors to power hybrid and remote working, which often leads to hefty bills (not feasible for SMEs) and doesn’t give them the performance they need.

We designed Inevidesk to power a new way of working for those designing in the built environment. One that’s cost accessible, easy to implement and – critically – a high-performance VDI platform that meets the demanding graphical needs of AEC organisations. We enable employees to work from anywhere with an internet connection, supporting home working and keeping infrastructure centralised for both security and ease of management.

How has the business evolved since its launch? When was this?

In less than four years the business has grown exponentially. We launched in 2020 and we are well on our way to achieving our goal of becoming the industry standard for virtual desktops. There are now nearly 900 active Inevidesk virtual desktops – ‘vdesks’ – being used by 32 firms in the UK.

We also recently launched our latest innovation, Flexidesk, which enables firms to scale their VDI in a more granular way, based on their resourcing needs, to support when onboarding new hires or working with freelancers.

Tell us about the working culture at Inevidesk

We primarily work from home, coming together at a coworking space when we need to meet in person. But we remain in contact throughout the day, every day to keep things progressing. The aim is to enable a very open culture where people can ask questions and learn elements across the business. We don’t like to silo anyone. We try and organise team nights out every so often where we indulge in good food and wine.

How are you funded?

Thus far, Inevidesk has been fully bootstrapped.

What has been your biggest challenge so far and how have you overcome this?

One of the biggest challenges we’ve faced is the repercussions of the pandemic on supply chains and the availability of hardware and pricing.

For example, we realised there was a global shortage of graphic cards, and so we had to be proactive with our network of suppliers to secure them before they were bought out by other people. While we did manage to do this, it was daunting to be committing a huge amount of money in advance of securing the sales.

That being said, it made a great impression to be able to deliver in such a difficult climate where many were waiting for six months or more for simple workstations.

How does Inevidesk answer an unmet need?

We think all AEC organisations deserve access to cutting edge tech and not just those organisations with the deepest pockets.

Since we have been working in IT for decades, we knew that existing ‘big tech’ VDI offerings from the likes of VMWare, Citrix, Nvidia GRID and Azure were too complex, poor performing and expensive – costing 3-5 times that of traditional infrastructure – for most AEC organisations to justify investment.

With Inevidesk, we are addressing those critical cost and performance barriers to open the incredible benefits of VDI tech – improved working agility, resiliency, efficient estate management and centralised security, allied with exceptional performance – to a much wider range of organisations.

What’s in store for the future?

We’ve firmly moved from startup and into scaleup territory and are increasingly recognised by the industry as an innovative, credible challenger to the big players. As a result, we’re having positive conversations with a wide range of organisations and are seeing the first steps towards expanding outside of the UK, having recently installed a number of our pods in Hong Kong and planning to establish a presence in other global territories.

What one piece of advice would you give other founders or future founders?

When you found a company, you’re never not thinking about it. It’s there when you go to bed and often the first thing in your head when you wake up. There will certainly be stressful periods, especially when there is a need to make important decisions that can impact the continued viability of the enterprise.

My advice would be to try hard to make sure your work-life balance is good. That means ensuring family time is protected as much as possible and maintaining other interests. My co-founders have the same mentality.

And finally, a more personal question! What’s your daily routine and the rules you’re living by at the moment?

There are no real routines. When you have a young company and a young family you need to respond to whatever is happening in the moment.

Tim Whiteley is the Co-Founder of Inevidesk.