Sprint focuses on enterprise with Workplace-as-a-Service bundle

A push for the enterprise business

As part of its OfficeFuel initiative to entice business and enterprise IT customers, Sprint has launched a new managed service plan it's calling Workplace-as-a-Service. Sprint is marketing its turnkey WaaS offering to include wired and wireless services that a business needs.

The Workplace-as-a-Service plan packages a number of existing Sprint communications services - including Wi-Fi, business calling, mobile device management, and collaboration tools - into a monthly bundle. At this time, customers can choose where they want to buy their wireless service if they're not ready to migrate to Sprint's mobile broadband network. If business users switch to Sprint, the carrier is aggressively pricing its mobile plans.

These Sprint services aren't new. Sprint has in the past offered components of Workplace-as-a-Service separately, but by bundling the offerings together the company hopes to reduce cost and the headache of having to manage the individual services.

Benefits of bundling

Combining the various services into one bill provides a huge benefit to customers in terms of service. In the event something goes wrong, customers won't have to fight with vendors, who may point fingers at each other.

Instead, Sprint will be the single point of contact to provide service should problems arise.

Workplace-as-a-Service includes wide area network (WAN) connectivity, managed Wi-Fi, local and long-distance voice calling, audio and video conferencing, online collaboration, instant messaging and presence, mobile device management (MDM) across all carriers and platforms, and optional Sprint wireless plans for phones and tablets.

Another benefit to WaaS is knowing how much is being spent on services. "Sprint's main pitch is to outline companies' spending on Wi-Fi vendors, MPLS vendors, managed services vendors, mobile device management vendors and wireless providers," Fierce Wireless reported of WaaS, noting that many CIOs don't know the cost of services per employee.

Pricing

"What's truly unique is putting them all together on a single offer and offering them on a per-seat, per-month basis," Mike Fitz, Sprint vice president of business solution commercialization, said in an interview with Fierce Wireless.

Fitz told Ina Fried at Re/Code that the service costs $200 per user per month.

Sprint is positioning its WaaS offering to businesses with 100 to 5,000 employees across multiple sites, and with 20 to 200 knowledge workers at each site.

"It is ideally suited for businesses opening a new office or expanding to additional sites, or customers looking to upgrade outdated technologies," Sprint said in a statement.

After an aggressive push to attract consumer users, Sprint CEO Marcelo Claure is now wooing business customers to its mobile network.

With WaaS, Sprint is pricing its smartphone plans at just $40 per month for unlimited voice, text and data, $20 cheaper than the $60 consumer plan. Tablet plans start at $5 per month for 5GB of data for each slate, compared to the $60 consumers pay for 6GB of monthly data. Wi-Fi offloading with WaaS may be a key reason why Sprint is able to be aggressive in its mobile plan pricing.

Sprint isn't the only carrier eyeing enterprise customers. At Mobile World Congress 2015, rival AT&T announced an AT&T Mobile Office Suite that bundles Microsoft services with AT&T's offerings.