Macs Saving IBM Money on IT Management Despite Higher Up Front Cost

IBM this year began adopting Macs for its employees, a move the company says has been highly successful. Speaking at the JAMF Nation User Conference (via AppleInsider) earlier this week, IBM vice president of Workplace-as-a-Service Fletcher Previn said that far fewer Mac users require help with their machines than IBM's PC users.

"Every Mac that we buy is making and saving IBM money," he said, as the Macs require less management and setup effort than PCs, even though they cost more up front.

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Just five percent of employees using Macs call IBM's internal help desk for troubleshooting, while 40 percent of the company's PC users make calls to the help desk. According to Previn, these numbers point towards the Mac's ease of use and the solid job the IBM team has done setting up Macs at the company. IBM's Mac onboarding experience is highly streamlined, making it easy for employees to do much of the setup work themselves in a short period of time.

IBM's deployment allows for employees to receive a shrink-wrapped, brand new Mac and quickly and easily set it up on their own. Using Apple's Device Enrollment Program and JAMF Software's Casper Suite, users set up and install IT-approved apps, software and configurations.

JAMF Software's Self Service allows IBM and its employees a simple method for installing licensed software. In an example given by Previn, the employee simply needs to click install for Microsoft Office, and IT will handle the licensing on the backend without exposing any of it to the user.

IBM is rolling out 1,900 Macs to its employees each week, and there are more than 130,000 iOS and Mac devices being used by IBM employees at the current time. In July, IBM CIO Jeff Smith said he thought IBM might end up purchasing 150,000 to 200,000 Macs on a regular basis for the company's 400,000 employees.

As of 2014, Apple and IBM have been working together to create specialized enterprise-focused apps and services for iOS devices. Under the partnership, IBM is selling iOS devices to its corporate customers, developing apps, and providing on-demand AppleCare service.

Top Rated Comments

macrumorsuser10 Avatar
67 months ago


Macs require less management and setup effort than PCs, even though they cost more up front ...

Just five percent of employees using Macs call IBM's internal help desk for troubleshooting, while 40 percent of the company's PC users make calls to the help desk.

This is not a fair comparison. In general, Mac users are more intelligent than PC users. That's why the Macs require less management and help from the sys admins.
Score: 34 Votes (Like | Disagree)
jkichline Avatar
67 months ago
This seems to align with my personal experience in system administration. When I was a .NET programmer and running Windows, I was terrible ineffective and spent a lot of time troubleshooting issues or helping others with problems on their own Windows machines. I switched to Mac in 2006 and I could have been happier. My blood pressure is down and my productivity is up. I can tell Windows users I don't know how to fix their problem (because I honestly don't know what to do with that 40-bit hexadecimal error code in the registry) and I just hook them up with Macs. I set them up and basically forget them.
Score: 18 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Markoth Avatar
67 months ago
As a user of three OSes, I'd say "you're just figuring this out now?", but I suppose this is a big step for a behemoth such as IBM, so good to hear! :D

what exactly is easier to do on a mac than a pc? i've tried both and macs simply have less customization than pcs..?

PCs quite simply tend to have more problems than Macs. Yes, the more limited selection of hardware helps, among other things, but regardless of the reason, it is definitely so. Lower cost for both setup and management. That's what Macs get you.
Score: 16 Votes (Like | Disagree)
macduke Avatar
67 months ago
So how long until Microsoft switches to Macs while shifting their entire focus to services?
Score: 15 Votes (Like | Disagree)
dstud208 Avatar
67 months ago
10 years ago I never would have guessed this would happen.
Score: 14 Votes (Like | Disagree)
avalys Avatar
67 months ago
Great news! Apple finally making inroads into large businesses will only make things better for desktop Mac users.
Score: 14 Votes (Like | Disagree)

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