The top 6 benefits of a Mac at work
During the early days of personal computing, Microsoft and Windows emerged as early front runners in the space. As people became more familiar with the operating system at home, it became the go-to choice for offices everywhere. Then, around the late-90s/early-2000s, Apple and macOS catered to more creative fields, which ultimately marked the shift that we see today in the workplace.
These days, using a Mac for business is not just for creatives. It’s for everyone. Like with Windows initially, iPhones and iPads are becoming more prevalent, and more people are getting comfortable with the Apple ecosystem and even preferring it in many cases.
So, as the requests are piling in for Mac computers at work, is it worth it? Should your IT team make the recommendation to start allowing them in your environment? This article will go over some of the pros and cons. Spoiler: there are a ton of benefits to having a Mac.
Who benefits the most from having a Mac at work?
Earlier it was hinted that Macs used to just be for creatives. But thanks to macOS’s easy-to-use interface and Apple’s lightweight footprint, Macs are really for everyone. Executives are starting to use them more and more because they don’t have to think about how their computer works. And your road warriors, who are often traveling and love the portability and featherweight aesthetic.
Advantages of Mac for business
Familiarity and ease of use are only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the benefits of Mac. Here are just a few more reasons to consider and see what Macs are good for.
Less turnover and cheaper in the long run
On average, Macs tend to have a longer lifecycle than Windows machines. Typically, a Mac can sufficiently run for 3 years. But if you talk to any IT team that’s been supporting Macs, you’ll quickly see that you can potentially get up to 6 years out of one. Not saying 6 years should be your benchmark, but that’s definitely a possibility, especially if you’re handing it down to users that require less processing power.
According to a Forrester study, you could potentially save up to $800 thanks to the longer lifespan. And even if you don’t have a need to hand down computers, you can still make a little more by reselling them. Apple devices, overall, tend to have a better resale value.
Not to say that macOS is infallible, but it is definitely more secure than its Windows counterpart. There is less malware out there, comparatively speaking. And it’s less prone to security and data breaches. Again, please don’t read this as if it won’t ever happen, but it’s much less likely to happen on your Apple devices.
A stronger operating system also comes with the advantage of needing to spend less on security software and management. More ways to cut costs? Bonus points to macOS!
No need for upgrades
With Apple switching over to their own processors, the M1 chips and beyond are now proving to be powerful enough for most business needs. When Macs came with Intel processors — or maybe what you’re familiar with still on Windows machines — you’d need to max out their RAM and processor speeds to make sure it could keep up. This new silicon is not just leveling the field but also giving Macs a huge advantage. Now, you’re saving money not having to get the best of the best — because the entry-level Mac is already there.
Better compatibility with mobile devices
You briefly read about how iOS and iPadOS are helping decrease the barrier to entry on Mac in the office. But that also means that your user will be able to seamlessly go from their company Mac to their personal iPhone with their data intact. That probably scares some of the security folks reading this, but there are ways to manage that and make sure that data stays encrypted. Apple even has services like Apple Business Manager that can help you administer all the protocols you need.
Less support needed
Because you do not have to worry about all things like virus definitions, operating system patches, etc., you’ll find that overall your Mac devices don’t need as much day-to-day attention, which means less support from your team. So, you can have an IT team that’s proactively working to make technology better for your company and not just bandaging things up to keep it running.
Cloud-based solutions make backups easier
Before, it used to be a headache to support a storage system that both your Mac and Windows computers could talk to. But thanks to cloud solutions, that issue is entirely off the table. All you need to worry about is a client-side application or, better, a browser.
The cons of Mac at the office
Like most things, Macs may not be the best for every situation. You’ll need to really take stock of your environment and see if it’s what works for your company. Here are a couple of reasons why Macs are not suitable for business.
Additional support and knowledge needed
If you’re primarily a Windows office, then chances are, you’ve invested in a lot of infrastructures that might not work well with macOS. Or you’ve built a team with specialized skill sets in Windows, not Mac. Both of those scenarios require a little more upfront cost in money and time to get your enterprise up to speed with macOS. Maybe that’s not a deal-breaker for you, but it’s something you’ll probably have to justify to the money people at your company. But if you need some help with that, see above for reasons that will make a financial case for Macs.
This is becoming less and less of an issue but can still be a massive thorn on any IT manager’s side. If you’re running a split environment — both Mac and Windows — or if your users are frequently sharing files with other companies that are Windows-only, this could be a sticking point. While common apps like the Microsoft Office suite or Adobe Creative Cloud can be opened on either operating system, there are a few more niche apps that don’t play as nice. And for people who are constantly sharing files back and forth, this is typically a non-starter.
Whether you’re switching to Mac for your small business or introducing them into your massive enterprise environment, there are a ton of great reasons to use Mac computers at work. From security to costs and even how easy it is to use, macOS is a great option for everyone in the workplace. Yes, even the reluctant IT manager will come around — eventually.