Upgrading Your IT Equipment
Is it time to upgrade? Here’s how to decide–and how to save money.by PETER ALEXANDER At some point, your IT equipment will no longer meet your needs–either your business will outgrow the equipment, the equipment will become too slow, or the technology will become outdated. Something needs to happen.But you’re on a tight budget. You can’t afford to replace your PCs and other electronic equipment with brand-new models…or can you? Here’s how to decide when–and if–it’s time to upgrade, and how to save money doing it.1. When Is the Right Time to Upgrade?
Chances are, things have changed in your business since you acquired your IT equipment. Your business may be growing faster than expected (good for you), and your equipment just isn’t keeping up. Or you’re facing challenges that require doing more with fewer resources. Perhaps it’s time to boost productivity–both yours and your employees–by automating some processes or improving collaboration with anytime, anywhere access to customer data. Or your business may now be required to comply with new regulations mandating additional security and storage. Maybe it’s time to boost customer responsiveness, or reduce operating expenses.
I could go on, but you get the idea. In each of these scenarios, upgrading existing IT equipment could help solve the problem. So how do you know exactly when to upgrade? Here are a few questions to ask:
- Are you or your employees spending more time trying to accomplish tasks? For instance, does it seem to take longer to launch applications on a given PC? Has the network grown sluggish at handling routine traffic? If so, it’s probably time to consider upgrading.
- Is your business using powerful new applications? If you’re planning to install processor- and memory-intensive programs, it’s likely your PCs will need to be upgraded. Digital video editing, for example, is extremely processor- and memory-intensive, and requires a large, fast hard drive for storage.
- Have you added, or are you planning to add, more users to your network? If so, it might be time to consider upgrading the storage capacity and/or memory of your shared office server, or upgrading other network-related equipment.
2. Is Upgrading the Best Financial Decision?