January 5, 2023
Ca-chunk, ca-chunk, whirrrr…that’s the sound of your trusty old printer producing yet another document. It’s also the sound of a ticking time bomb that’s about to disrupt your business.
It’s natural to want to get the most out of our technology, but there’s a delicate balance between getting additional value and inviting risk. Paying close attention to your IT life cycle can help you achieve that balance.
What Is the IT Life cycle?
The IT life cycle refers to the useful life of your technology, from deployment to retirement. How long that useful life lasts depends on a handful of variables, including the technology itself, its usage, the specific parameters of your business, and the maintenance and service it receives.
Typically, life cycle can be extended through ongoing maintenance, updates, and upgrades. Upon reaching the end of its most effective stage, the IT life cycle moves to replacement, decommission, and salvage.
Why Does the IT Life Cycle Matter?
Business technologies are meant to make your life easier and provide a competitive advantage for your business. Having the right technologies in place saves time and resources for your employees — arguably the most valuable asset your organization has.
When your assets reach the end of their effective usefulness, they cross the line from supporting your organization to hindering your organization. If this occurs without being noticed or addressed, the technology will continue to negatively affect your organization.
Signs Your Business Needs Better Life Cycle ManagementYour organization needs better IT life cycle management if you notice any of these tell-tale signs:
- There are frequent technology-related disruptions
- Your IT team is caught in an endless break/fix cycle
- Repair parts are getting far more expensive and difficult to find
- You have to scramble when software or hardware is no longer supported
- Admin and troubleshooting tasks frequently take time away from employees whose skill sets are more valuable elsewhere
- You’re caught off guard when devices or systems stop working, which means you don’t have time to properly research new and better solutions, and might have fewer choices about what’s available
- You don’t know what your employees are actually using and where your solutions have overlap
- You aren’t sure if you have hidden cybersecurity risks
- Some of your hardware is over seven years old
Proper IT Life Cycle Management
Keeping outdated equipment in your ecosystem is often seen as a money-saving practice. But outdated equipment can be costing you more than you think. Getting an additional year of use from a device that represents a daily risk to your business just isn’t worth it.
If you haven’t already, make a detailed inventory of the technology that’s important to your business, how old it is, and when it should be replaced. Then you can start prioritizing investments in new technology to maintain productivity and reduce your risk.
Get Help With Life Cycle Asset Management
It sounds so simple, doesn’t it? Just make a detailed inventory of all of your technology!
Let’s be honest — even for small to midsize businesses, that “simple” task can be overwhelming. If your IT team is already struggling to keep everything up and running and respond to end-users in a timely manner, then realistically speaking, it’s probably best left for a trusted technology partner, or it just isn’t going to happen.
Marco’s life cycle asset discovery service is comprehensive and includes insight into the following areas:
- Workstations – operating system, make, model, serial number
- Servers – operating system, domain controllers, available disk space
- Infrastructure – make, model, serial number, firmware version
- Security – domain admins, password strength, windows security updates
- Applications – complete software list, versions and devices
After the discovery is complete, you’ll have a list of all discoverable IT assets operating on your network, all the information you need to manage them, and a straightforward procurement plan. You’ll be able to plan ahead for larger purchases, and you’ll get expert advice about which investments should be made ASAP and which can wait.
If making your workplace less frustrating, more efficient, and more secure is part of your New Year’s resolution, our experts can help you get 2023 off to a great start!