White Paper

Why Your Organization Should Consider Device as a Service

Even sophisticated IT shops can struggle with device deployments, leading many to turn to DaaS programs.

As the workplace has changed in recent years, many organizations have been challenged to deliver the tools and capabilities users need to get their jobs done at any time, from any location. A key part of this challenge has been providing users with powerful mobile devices that meet the needs of the digital workspace. 

The range of potential devices has widened, and organizations face more questions than ever before about what to buy, how to manage and maintain a number of different machines and when to refresh their hardware. Gone are the days when everybody received an identical Windows laptop or BlackBerry phone. Just look at notebook computers: Organizations now have options ranging from inexpensive Chromebooks to lightweight, powerful machines that can cost several thousand dollars. In the past, organizations often simply gave the more expensive devices to executives, while outfitting rank-and-file users with less costly machines. 

Today, though, organizations need to be more strategic. They can no longer treat laptops and smartphones as status symbols, but instead must develop user “personas” to match employees with the devices that will best help them do their jobs. It can be challenging to get this right, especially as both endpoints and user roles continue to evolve. 

Pair this upfront obstacle with the ongoing challenges of configuring and managing devices (not to mention retiring them at their end of their useful life and planning out the finances of regular refreshes) and it’s obvious why even sophisticated IT shops commonly struggle with their device environments. And it’s no wonder why enterprises are increasingly turning to DaaS programs to solve this problem. 


The year by which nearly 1 in 3 commercial PCs shipped in the U.S. will be part of a DaaS agreement, up from only 2 percent in 2016

Source: IDC, “The ‘As a Service’ Model Comes to Hardware,” (PDF) June 2017

Meet Device as a Service

While the term Device as a Service is sometimes used merely as another way to refer to device leasing contracts, a more robust DaaS engagement can deliver — and improve — every part of the process of deploying and managing devices. 

It’s true that the move of device procurement to a financing model does make costs more predictable, but this is only one of the advantages of DaaS. Some of the most attractive benefits of the model include: 

Flexible device selection: With vendor-specific leasing programs, device options are limited. In fact, an organization might have to partner with two or more vendors to obtain the range of devices that users need, which can increase complexity, rather than introducing simplicity. In an end-to-end, vendor-agnostic engagement, a DaaS partner will be able to connect an organization with virtually any device that workers need (and desire). This flexibility not only improves productivity by ensuring that users have the right devices, but can also boost employee satisfaction. 

Faster, simpler deployments: An influx of devices can overwhelm IT staffers, who can’t simply stop performing their day-to-day duties to get devices ready to go. By taking deployment out of the hands of IT staff, organizations can speed up their device rollouts, without hampering other IT initiatives. 

Configuration services: Much as the public cloud has allowed IT shops to instantly spin up infrastructure resources, a DaaS partner can get devices ready to go without requiring hands-on work from internal IT professionals. While the process is different from that of procuring cloud infrastructure, the outcome is identical: An organization has the resources it needs, ready to go, without IT shops having to manually prepare hardware to run within the organization. 

Lower total cost of ownership: By procuring devices, security services and ongoing management from a single partner, organizations can lower the total cost of ownership for devices. 

Reduced IT burden: There’s an enormous opportunity cost to using highly paid IT professionals for the (often routine) work of configuring and managing end-user devices. Every hour that an IT staffer spends loading apps onto a smartphone or fixing a laptop keyboard is an hour that he or she could otherwise spend pursuing an organization’s digital transformation goals. A DaaS engagement frees up IT professionals for more strategic projects. 

24/7 multichannel support: The entire reason that the digital workspace (and, by extension, DaaS) is so important is that employees need the tools to power anytime, anywhere productivity. And that sort of around-the-world, around-the-clock work is impossible if employees have to wait until 9 a.m. Eastern Standard Time for the help desk to answer their calls. A DaaS partner can provide 24/7 support, ensuring that users can get their work done, wherever (and whenever) they are. 

Warranty support: A DaaS partner will wade through the cumbersome processes of managing device warranties on an organization’s behalf, taking yet another task off the plate of managers and IT staff. 

End of life: Many organizations have storage closets or spare rooms that effectively serve as “device graveyards” where old laptops collect dust. No more. When an organization has moved on from a device, a DaaS partner will recycle or refurbish any outdated technology responsibly. 

To learn more about how your organization can overcome the challenges of the digital workspace, read the CDW white paper “Device as a Service and the Digital Workspace.”