Many articles make cloud computing sound like panacea for all. In reality, it’s just about addressing shortfalls in your current delivery operations or adding flexibility in the way that IT delivers services to the organization.

As I talked in a previous blog post, it is about focusing on SERVICES, not on forklifting your entire IT operation. With that in mind, let’s look at a service that can help address a few things that most technologists do not want as their primary career activities:

  • Desktop refresh cycles
  • Mobile computing costs
  • Endpoint OS and productivity licensing
  • Bring Your Own Device or BYOD

Each of these can be addressed by delivering your Desktops (and Laptops) as-a-Service, also coined DaaS.

Before I jump in, I want to make something clear: DaaS is not the same as building a Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI). While there are many similarities, VDI offers on-LAN performance for high-resource-need workstations and users. On the other hand, DaaS is targeted for average computing tasks, not for graphics editing/rendering, engineering or high-performance workstation users.

With that said, let’s look at some of the places where DaaS can help you save time and focus on other critical services to deliver to the organization.

Desktop Refresh
If buying a PC was where the work ended for an IT group, then we wouldn’t be searching for ways to gain flexibility and get back time. But realistically speaking, stuff happens. There are bound to be different machines on your network with different OEM licensing that you may have to retrofit to your network.

DaaS lets you cover everything that end users touch – from one screen. What if your only concern is the power supply and NIC? Not a problem. Delivering updates to memory and storage via your browser – sure thing. Deliver software and patching – all with utmost convenience.

Mobile Computing Needs
IT staffs are looking for ways to standardize without breaking the bank. They also need a way to securely update mobile users without them being on the corporate network. DaaS lets you deliver the critical apps needed to a notebook, whether in use at a coffee shop or while using a mobile broadband card.

With DaaS you can also cut hardware costs from $1,500 down to $500 or less, and extend the lifecycle of those machines you do buy. This is because staffers are using their own machine (as discussed later in BYOD), or you are purchasing a light mobile client instead of that mobile desktop at a hefty price tag.

Endpoint Licensing
Do any of your users have outdated licensing? Or worse, are they using unsupported operating systems? Rather than looking to replace all the machines just to get new OEM licensing, or managing a big agreement, you can look at purchasing desktops delivered as-a-service.

Almost all options will include the OS and the updates to it. (That’s one less thing for you to do.)  On top of that, there are options to bring your existing productivity licensing, or complete that in one neatly wrapped package. Now, you have the chance to get your OS, core apps, updates, and maintenance in one charge, with lower management costs. Time for revenue-generating processes goes up. Everyone wins!

BYOD
Do you have users that want to use their MacBook Pro? Their Chromebook? Their iPad? Okay! You can focus on a secure connection so that anything on these devices will not translate back to the desktop instances in the data center. Staffers can bring in any device and get the company approved desktop you want on all of them.

But wait, you can’t deliver Windows OS on a Chromebook! Or can you? Yes, you can! DaaS lets you say, “I don’t care what machine my users are on!”

As with any service delivery, there are pluses and minuses, and each need to be evaluated by your organization. With that said if anything above rings true, it might be time to have a conversation about DaaS.

To learn more about CDW cloud solutions, visit CDW.com/cloud.

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