Don’t let Old Technology Slow You Down
Cutting costs wherever you can is an important part of doing business. You don’t want to waste money by spending it unnecessarily. Finding opportunities to save money can make a big difference in your budget.
But if that’s your primary focus, it will eventually cause problems for you in one way or another. Underpaying your staff will lead to unengaged employees and poor work ethic. Finding the cheapest available property to lease will lead to other problems with the facility.
The same is true of your IT. Is cheap, or old technology causing other problems for you?
3 Signs Your Technology Is Way Too Old
There’s certainly something to be said for getting as much out of a computer as possible. Hardware is expensive, and so, it makes sense that you’d want to wait as long as possible to replace it.
However, eventually, it’ll cause more problems than it’s worth. At a certain point, it’s better for you and your business as a whole for you to pay for new hardware.
Do you know when that is?
If you’re unsure as to whether your technology is too old, consider these red flags:
1. It’s Multiple Generations Out Of Date
Sure, a single generation out of date doesn’t mean you need to upgrade. But 3 or 4 generations? Then you’re getting to the point when you’ll be at “end of life”, when the developer is no longer offering support like patches or upgrades. This leads to a degrade in usability, and greater security risks. When a newer version is released, it means the clock is running out on how long the providers will continue to support the version you’re using. Don’t push it too long, or you could put your data at risk.
2. It’s Slowing You Down & Costing You Money
If your old tech is working so poorly that it stops you and your staff from working, then it’s time to replace it. The downtime caused by old hardware isn’t worth the money you’re saving by hanging on to it. Whether you agree or not, it’s a fact – Ponemon Institute estimates that every minute of even partial downtime can cost as much as $5,600.
The main cost of downtime is not the fix itself, it’s the halt in your firm’s’ productivity. If an IT-related or natural disaster occurs and takes critical systems offline, employees will be unable to complete their tasks, yet your normal business expenses will carry on.
3. Repairs Don’t Last Very Long
The older your hardware gets, the more often you’ll need to call someone to fix it. The more you need someone to fix it, the less effective those fixes become. That means paying more and more for support to come in and get it running again, the returns on which will quickly diminish.
Does Your Technology Need To Be Replaced?
If you’re still unsure about the feasibility of the technology you’re currently using, follow these steps to evaluate it’s functionality and value to your business:
1. Does It Work?
- Can you turn it on?
- How long does it take to start up?
- How long does it take to execute tasks like opening applications?
In a nutshell, you need to know whether your hardware is holding you back, making you wait, and slowing your firm down.
2. Is It Up To Date?
Now that you’ve determined how functional the hardware is, the next step is the software. Even if this technology hasn’t been turned on in a week, there will likely be some updates that have to take place.
Updates are important because they correct existing errors and mistakes in software, and patch potential flaws that could leave it vulnerable to security threats.
One by one, open up each program you would plan to use on a regular basis. If there are updates that need to be installed, a pop-up window will likely open on start-up. However, if the previous owner turned off that automatic function, you’ll need to manually check for updates, which can be done in the program preferences.
3. Is It Under Warranty?
After double-checking that everything is up to date, the next step will be to confirm the status of any existing licenses and warranties.
Depending on the type of firm, there may be specific software needed for daily operations. The bottom line is that if you need it to get work done, you should know whether you can use it.
In the end, it’s all about weighing the pros and cons. Sure, hanging on to your old technology means you don’t have to pay to replace it or go through the hassle of finding and installing new hardware. But is that really still worth it, when you weigh it against the costs that come with putting up with it?
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