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6 minute readThe Real Cost of Reactive Upgrades

“Reduce cost, increase functionality and improve business operations” is the battle cry of many businesses.

IT is continuously battling a world of infrastructure components and applications while also dealing with a myriad of old and new technologies. Adding complication, everyone’s an expert and has not only an opinion, but “the” solution. Obsolete hardware just adds another hazard to the mix.

At the same time, no matter how much effort is put into planning, there is always something that threatens the ability to focus on delivery.

People, technology, time, and money are threatened on every front, which has an impact on both strategy and results. Project delays and vendor product schedules collectively work against a plan. Nothing is entirely predictable, and everything must be accommodated.

What is Happening.

We’ve grown so accustomed to technology being disposable that replacement is the presumed solution whenever there are hardware challenges that impact production systems. These challenges always seem to pop up at the most inopportune times, prompting an immediate, reactive response.

Replacement cost is usually the first topic in the discussion. The cost is often rationalized by the reactive decision to replace the equipment based on business need. A frequent cause of reactionary upgrades is End of Life (EOL) hardware, but similar issues arise when additional capacity is needed in a system that is already EOL but the project to replace it is currently underway or already in the queue.

Response to system challenges is usually consistent:

  • Assessment of replacement options – what products should be considered?
  • Installation and conversion effort – what will it take to get it operational?
  • Cost analysis – how much will it cost?

Another challenge is that busy schedules, pressing deadlines, and critical projects can cause EOL and End of Service Life (EOSL) notices to be overlooked. While the result can be problematic, even organizations that dutifully plan can find themselves in a situation where an important system is suddenly in the spotlight.

Adding even more complexity, some legacy systems are left in place to satisfy governmental regulation for financial records or provide historical data visibility because conversion to a replacement system is not possible or practical.

Regardless of the cause, a “reactive” upgrade suddenly becomes an unplanned priority.

The “Reactive” Upgrade

Reactive upgrades can be expensive, both in dollars and time. The bigger challenge is the expertise they require, which is often talent that must be pulled from other projects. The drain on resources and impact on delivery then begins its snowball effect.

Is replacing a functional piece of equipment the best path to success? Not always.

Just the effort to assess the replacement options, including evaluating interoperability and compatibility with the surrounding technologies, can be very time-consuming. Sometimes the only way to prove that new hardware “X” will work with legacy software “Y” is to test it. As systems get older, expertise is harder to find, and the knowledge base is more limited.

The time and cost for purchase, installation, and cutover deprive your other projects of the resources necessary to be successful, so your execution suffers.

What if, instead of taking resources away from other projects, you simply added the components you needed or arranged for maintenance to cover the equipment until it was no longer needed? Reliant Technology specializes in maintenance, support and the components that you’ll need.

A Shift in Strategy

Buying equipment you don’t want to buy, at a time that doesn’t make sense, and using resources that are already committed, should raise questions or maybe even alarms. The fact is that it’s not only commonplace, it’s normal. Should it be?

When a hardware asset is added to the books, it is typically depreciated over a period of years. Accountants call this the asset’s useful life. Regardless of the “useful” accounting life, every asset also has practical business life. Risk increases when the business life is longer than the useful life.

Is it time to adjust your strategy to include the capabilities that are available from Reliant?

Should all hardware transition off the OEM maintenance contract after the original term has expired, providing budget relief and eliminating the ‘surprise’ need for a reactive upgrade?

You could negotiate affordable maintenance coverage at the time of purchase, when you have excellent leverage with the OEM, and then make plans with Reliant once the OEM significantly raises their price. If the hardware is still in use at the end of the contract, everything is all ready to go. Plan on an annual review with Reliant to validate plans and replacement strategies.

Leverage the capabilities of Reliant and work with them to define a plan that will protect your business and mitigate the risk. Along with business benefits, the IT organization will save time and money.

Reliant Technology specializes in new and certified pre-owned hardware along with providing the maintenance and services necessary to keep your IT infrastructure up and running.

Contact us at 877-227-0828 or request a quote from us below to develop a plan that will save you time and money, maintain the operational stability you need and provide a welcome relief from reactive upgrades and reactionary planning.

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Todd Bennett

by Todd Bennett

Todd leads a team of expert IT consultants, helping customers around the world with their data center hardware, maintenance, and support needs, providing uptime, capacity, and savings options to enable IT and Procurement teams to do more with their existing budgets. Todd has been in enterprise technology for more than 30 years.

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About Reliant Technology

As Data Center and storage experts, Reliant Technology is available to provide consultations and solutions to your server backup needs. Our experienced engineers and IT specialists are ready to help you determine the best option for your Data Center. If you have a topic you would like to see discussed, or if you would like to submit an article for possible publication, please, get in touch with us.