Save Money & Boost Productivity with a Technology Refresh
When your organization is working with restrictive budgets, it can be tempting to wait until your computers like desktops and laptops and printers are on their last leg. But if you do this, you’ll be increasing your exposure to risk significantly.
Legacy hardware, software, and operating systems can not only impact productivity, they can also leave companies exposed to a data breach. You can also run into potential issues when trying to integrate new applications and technologies.
In this scenario, the best approach is to embrace a technology refresh across the institution. But before we get ahead of ourselves, let’s define it.
What Is a Technology Refresh?
A technology refresh (or tech refresh) can be described as a process that establishes a predictable cycle for swapping out old technology with new assets every few years. It’s a highly cost-effective approach that helps school districts and businesses of all sizes keep pace with industry trends and innovations.
Why do organizations need a tech refresh?
Let’s face it. Maintaining legacy infrastructure can be costly. Outdated equipment will lead to inefficiencies in energy and space consumption, bloated administrative overheads, and lagging performance and service delivery.
Aging IT assets can also restrict your ability to scale and meet the demands of the marketplace effectively. Legacy systems will also increase your risk exposure to cyber threats and compliance violations.
What are the key benefits of a tech refresh?
A tech refresh comes with the following benefits:
- Boosted productivity
- Enhanced functionality
- Energy efficiency (with better power management)
- Improved streamlined processes
- Less hardware failure
- Reduced support costs
- Time and cost-saving features
How Do You Know If You Need a Technology Refresh?
There are plenty of reasons why you may need to upgrade and update your IT infrastructure, and these will be relative to your company and industry. However, the following are some critical reasons that apply to all:
You Need a Tech Refresh If You’re Still Running Windows 7
If you’re running Windows 7 on legacy desktops and laptops, for example, your company will be left highly vulnerable once Microsoft officially ends its support on January 14th, 2020. This translates into no more security updates or patches.
Several reasons why organizations choose not to upgrade to Windows 10 are because employees and executives are familiar with Windows 7, organizations are under the false belief that they have a lot of time, custom applications only run on Windows 7, and budget constraints.
So it makes sense that Computerworld’s latest forecast estimates that Windows 7 will be running on as much as 26.2% of all Windows-based machines by January 31st, 2020. By January 2121, Windows 7 will still account for 12% of all Windows operating systems (or approximately one of eight PCs or 180 million machines).
Having said that, let’s consider the fact that of all the 160,000 internet-connected computers infected with the infamous ransomware, WannaCry, approximately 67% were running Windows 7 without the latest security updates.
This means that anyone who is still running Windows 7 after January 14th, will be at risk of making the headlines like the recent school districts in Louisiana that were attacked by malware and had to issue a statewide emergency declaration. So if you’re reading this from a legacy computer, you have to upgrade immediately.
You Need a Tech Refresh If You’re Experiencing Technological Obsolescence
The world is changing rapidly, and as we enter a new decade of hyper digitization, those who don’t meet the demands of today’s tech-savvy consumers will be left behind.
If your servers can’t handle new software, if the latest apps don’t work on your tablets, or if your infrastructure can’t securely support bring-your-own-device (BYOD) initiatives, you have a problem.
If your current tech is outdated, you won’t be able to deliver enhanced user experiences, and you will be left increasingly exposed and vulnerable. You can still try to avoid a technology refresh and work with your current equipment, but you’ll end up spending more over time.
This is because you’ll have to patch more, troubleshoot more, and customize functions without any support from the manufacturer or software developer. Eventually, you’ll be forced to replace it anyway.
How Do You Implement a Successful Technology Refresh?
How you achieve a successful tech refresh depends on your organization and your budget. For example, if you’re a small business owner, you can put an individual or an internal IT team in charge of the refresh.
In this scenario, they will buy the equipment, do their own imaging, setup, and deployment. They will also be responsible for removing outdated, old equipment in an eco-friendly manner.
Large companies and schools can also adopt this tech refresh model, but it’s not ideal as it can be time and resource-intensive. Whenever this is the case, a single vendor solution can tick all the boxes.
Single Vendor Solution
Single vendor solutions can help you access all the hardware and software you need, cost-effectively. In this scenario, they will audit your current infrastructure and make recommendations that best suit your organization and budget.
As vendors work with multiple brands and manufacturers, you can get different types of technologies from one company (instead of several different companies). Single vendor solutions offer new or refurbished desktops, laptops, printers, and servers, along with applicable software and operating systems.
They also offer financing options to help accommodate restrictive budgets. A single solution vendor can also help you develop a highly customized technology refresh plan that comes into effect every few years.
Device as a Service (DaaS)
Single vendor solutions can also turn into a Device as a service or DaaS solution. This approach helps organizations keep up with the latest industry standards while maintaining compliance and security.
DaaS can be described as a procurement paradigm that’s based on a monthly subscription. This means that you don’t have to buy IT equipment at a capital expense. Just like the subscription models deployed by Adobe and Microsoft, you’ll be leasing all the cutting-edge technology you need for an affordable monthly fee.
When you don’t have to make a considerable commitment upfront, it also takes some of the pressure off and frees you up to focus on what’s important – your organization.
If your company wants to take advantage of a technology refresh, but don’t know which integration approach works best, we can help. Reach out to 2NDGEAR, and we’ll walk you through the process from discussion to deployment.