Computing power, platforms, and software can already be acquired as a service, so why not your IT and office equipment? Discover the benefits that workplace as a service (WaaS) can have for your company.
Ordered today, delivered tomorrow – a nice idea, but not one that can be applied to workplace IT. Before a purchase can go ahead, there are extensive budget planning and tender processes to go through, and there are often long contract phases for maintenance and support to contend with. And when all the various elements finally arrive, you have to configure the PC or laptop, install the necessary applications, and integrate the device into the network. A lengthy process that can take weeks to complete. In many cases, little thought is given to data erasure and asset disposal in line with legal requirements at the end of the equipment’s useful life.
Conventional IT procurement is also a headache when it comes to budget planning. Because the expense is spread over a wide range of items, it is very difficult to calculate the true costs. Then there are the risks over the lifecycle, such as hardware defects, loss, or theft.
The workplace as a service (WaaS) model is an extension of software as a service (SaaS). The user is provided with the hardware as well as the necessary software, including any additional office equipment required and the company is invoiced a fixed monthly amount. Services such as delivery installation and decommissioning services at the end of the term can also be incorporated into the lease payment. Put simply, the user is provided with an all-inclusive workplace.
This concept can be extended into other office equipment and fixtures such as audiovisual systems, video conferencing, networking and even furniture.
The traditional process is to acquire equipment, hardware and software, add it to the fixed asset register and depreciate it over several years. But varying depreciation periods and rules reduce transparency and make accounting complex. With a lease model, the assets including the software remain the property of the service provider. As the lessee, you only need to enter the running costs into the books. Fixed rates that cover the installation, equipment and all services offer further benefits.
Not many companies can say with complete certainty how much their workplace technology and equipment costs. A leased workplace will cost precisely the agreed amount each month. This creates transparency and planning certainty over the entire term of the lease.
With WaaS, new workplace technology devices are available within a matter of days. A self-service portal, for example, allows employees to choose their preferred hardware and software combination from a selection defined by the employer, which increases their satisfaction and commitment to the company.
A further advantage of the lease model is its greater flexibility. A wide range of workplace environments, including multiple screens and mobile devices, can be put together using the self-service portal and adapted to the job profile. All devices provide the work environment that the user is familiar with, and enable the user to connect to the corporate network at the click of a button without any additional configuration.
When purchasing IT, few companies give much thought to what will happen to new equipment once its useful life is over. In many cases, the data it contains is not erased properly, which is a clear breach of the law and can lead to hefty fines. Many lease models include data erasure in line with legal requirements and remarketing or disposal of decommissioned assets as part of the contract.
Leasing instead of buying – what has long been the norm for software can now also be applied to workplace IT. WaaS has many advantages: The employee gets a complete, ready-made work environment, the IT department has less work to do, and the finance department finally knows exactly what the Digital Workplace costs. A real win-win situation for everyone involved.
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Vice President Sales Australia/New Zealand