The Tableau server, allows developers to create a versioned repository of their content and automate, schedule data loads as well as receive automated emails of dashboards. In addition, a layer of security sits on top of this to authenticate and authorize users to the published content. The best part is that consumers can view and access with a modern browser or mobile and tablet device.
Tableau still has a bit more to go to become fully enterprise-ready. We are a global 70K employee very diverse company and just do not get the depth that we need. But the good news is that most of the missing enterprise functionality is starting to show up with updates. Such as Data governance, folders within folders and multiple identity providers as well as two brand new enhancement tools: Billions of rows super fast data engine and a really cool and easy to use data exploration and prepration tool.
Tableau desktop is only a small piece of the whole suite of tools and capabilities offered by using Tableau server. If cost is prohibiting you to purchase a full core license of Tableau server, consider Tableau online and the new subscription models that have much lower initial cost commitments.
Tableau was famous in the industry that they do not negotiate and have published prices. Recently, that has not been the case as Tableau is trying to close some larger enterprise deals.
Try to negotiate a better deal as it is a win-win solution for both sides. You will realize a very quick ROI and Tableau will have made a lifelong partner and customer.
The business problems are really solved at the Tableau desktop level. Tableau server simply allows a very efficient way of distributing those solutions and insights with the masses. We have been able to become a data-driven organization at the top and are slowly pushing that down to the layers of management using data authorization that is built into the tool.