DaaS: Device as a Service or Desktop as a Service?

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As a teenager in the 90s, you couldn’t avoid the sounds of grunge and hip-hop on your radio as both genres quickly became woven into the cultural fabric of your baggy, saggy jeans. This new genre duo was much needed after the aqua-net and high-hair glam rock hangover of the 80s. With the explosion of hip-hop and new artists rapidly emerging, there were a few cases of mistaken identity between Doctor Dré and well, er, Dr. Dre.

So, what does this have to do with DaaS? Much like the Dres, there seems to be a case of mistaken identity, or at least a more popular adaptation of an already in-use acronym.

So, what came first?

DaaS was a term first used to abbreviate Desktop as a Service, a managed VDI solution where the service provider is responsible for hosting virtual desktops (either on your premises, in the provider’s data center, or in the cloud). The service provider typically takes responsibility for hosting and maintaining the image, storage, access infrastructure, applications, and software licenses that make up the service in return for a fixed monthly fee. The degree of management by the service provider depends on the capability and availability of the customer’s IT resources.

Since then, a new Dre, sorry, DaaS, has taken over the mainstream definition, and it has become synonymous with Device as a Service (sometimes referred to as PC as a Service or PCaaS). The longer definition of this kind of DaaS is: a service provider offering that provides clients with a single contract inclusive of end-user hardware devices (PCs, laptops, tablets, smartphones, thin clients, and even AR/MR headsets) coupled with services (including deployment, break/fix support, help desk, and end-of-life (EOL) services). In addition, many solution providers, such as SHI, can include key software platforms, like productivity and end-user security suites.

Ready for a loop? Desktop as a Service can also be an element of a Device as a Service. I know, mind blown. This is achieved by adding hosted desktops into the overall service contract. For the remainder of this article, we’ll be using DaaS to mean Device as a Service.

So why should I consider Device aaS?

With your dose of 90s hip-hop trivia and definition clarification out of the way, here’s the real intention: Leveraging DaaS provides organizations with a number of compelling value points.

Shift large device capex purchases to manageable and predictable opex billing

Rather than making a large capital purchase in advance of deployment and depreciating the devices over their life (some of which is consumed by the provisioning period), organizations can forecast their requirements based on asset data highlighting EOL of the device/end of warranty or extended warranty. SHI allows customers to reserve inventory of preferred models and start paying for them when the units are moved into production. This way you only pay for your device as and when it is contributing to your business. We can work with you to determine the life of the device and therefore the length of the lease repayment and DaaS contract for each device, and tailor warranty and support options to fit these.

Limit or reduce the increased overhead needed to manage a hybrid and fluid workforce

Provisioning devices as a service means that SHI carries out the configuration, deployment, and – crucial for your hybrid workforce – the delivery and recovery of devices regardless of the employee location. There is now no need for end users to be on site for provisioning, support, or return of devices. We can ship new or replacement devices directly to end users, deploy/support remotely, and ship appropriate packaging for devices to be returned when employees leave or devices reach EOL. We can also ensure that all the peripherals your employees need are packaged with their device. Likewise, we can use the same processes to deploy to premises where essential workers are still on site and avoid your IT teams needing to attend.

Enable current IT staff to focus less on fire fighting and more time on strategic projects

Those IT teams that are now able to work from home rather than being in the office are also freed up from the ‘have you tried switching it off and switching it on’ conversations and day-to-day end-user issues. Instead, they can move their focus from ‘run the business’ activity to ‘grow the business,’ supporting your organization to navigate its way through ongoing uncertainty and the need to innovate to survive.

Ensure a positive Digital Employee Experience (DEX) is consistently delivered to end users

Our ability to provide hardware and support quickly and efficiently no matter where your employees are means that employees are productive for longer and are less likely to be frustrated by delays in getting hold of people and equipment. It is well known that employee satisfaction has a direct impact on customer satisfaction – and we work with you to put SLAs in place that ensure that your end users are properly supported to avoid unnecessary downtime and the associated frustration.

For more information on how DaaS can help you provision, support, and manage end-user devices in the era of hybrid work, register today for SHI’s Hybrid Workforce webinar series.

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