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PCs Join the As-a-Service Party

A hallmark of digital transformation is the evolution and adoption of the “as-a-service” model for delivery of IT services. So it makes sense that PCs should join networks, infrastructure, software and the host of other services that can be delivered by a third party.

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A hallmark of digital transformation is the evolution and adoption of the “as-a-service” model for delivery of IT services. So, it makes sense that PCs should join networks, infrastructure, software and the host of other services that can be delivered by a third party.

A hallmark of digital transformation is the evolution and adoption of the “as-a-service” model for delivery of IT services. Many companies have embraced software-as-a-service (SaaS), infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS), and other such offerings as they look to leverage the economics of cloud computing.

It makes sense, then, that PCs should join networks, infrastructure, software, and a host of other services that can be delivered by a third party. Offerings such as Dell PC as a Service (PCaaS) combine hardware, software, lifecycle services, and financing into one all-encompassing solution. This provides a single, predictable price per seat per month.

According to IDC, by 2020 about 20% of PCs will be purchased as a service, a five-fold growth from today. A recent report by Markets and Markets pegs the PCaaS market at $129.82 billion by 2023, up from $11.46 billion in 2018.  The report points to reducing IT staffing costs and workload as a key driver for adoption.

One of the biggest benefits of the PC-as-a-service model for organizations is the ability to better manage PC lifecycle costs and resources. This leads to greater efficiency, and recent research shows that operational efficiency is a high priority for both IT and business executives.

For example, the State of the CIO 2018 report by CIO, which surveyed 1,013 IT and business executives in a variety of industries, showed that 39% of IT leaders and 43% of line-of-business executives said increased operational efficiency was the most significant business initiative driving IT investments at their organizations. That was the top response for both groups.

The PC management process is probably more complex than many might think, especially for large, global enterprises with thousands of employees in far-flung offices. It involves anticipating new requirements from business users and factoring those into PC purchasing plans, assessing current capabilities and future needs of the organization, bringing new systems into production quickly, keeping systems running at peak performance, and retiring/recycling PCs at the end of their lifecycle. Then the process begins all over again.

Dealing with the cost and complexity of managing PCs leaves the IT staff with less time to work on innovative projects, leverage emerging technologies such as artificial intelligence (AI), the Internet of Things (IoT), advanced analytics, and bring about digital transformation.

The Dell PCaaS offering provides software and lifecycle services including deployment of systems ranging from advanced workstations to ultra-light laptops, support, and asset recovery. It also includes tools to automate, troubleshoot, and resolve system issues faster.

For example, one tool provides a user interface that helps prepare a custom cross-platform image that includes operating system, licensing, applications, desktop customization and network configuration settings. Another is a predictive technology that reduces troubleshooting processes by half and accelerates time to resolution of issues.

Companies can leverage flexible financing options designed to help assure that the IT department has what it needs to keep end users productive via PCs and software. A “services delivery manager” is assigned to be a customer’s single point of contact throughout the entire PC lifecycle. This individual helps streamline communications and provides guidance in all phases of the PC lifecycle.

By moving to this type of consumption model, businesses can benefit from significant savings on PC management costs, have more predictable budget planning, reduced the need for IT to manage computing needs, speed up PC refreshes to provide end-users with the most up-to-date technology, and tailor PCs to how end users want to work.

Copyright © 2018 IDG Communications, Inc.