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CIOs: Are you throwing out your IT equipment too early?

Jason Ogden | Jan. 30, 2015
The proliferation of "big" concepts such as data analytics, data centre infrastructure management, data centre and a host of other terms serve to add to the buzz, and complexities, of the marketplace.

This vendor-written piece has been edited by Executive Networks Media to eliminate product promotion, but readers should note it will likely favour the submitter's approach. 

In this day and age, the deployment and leverage of information technology is a lifeline in the way businesses sustain themselves and move forward. Maximising a business' IT infrastructure is indispensable.

The proliferation of "big" concepts such as data analytics, data centre infrastructure management, data centre and a host of other terms serve to add to the buzz, and complexities, of the marketplace.

Within this context, large corporations, and their vast IT departments, operate in a structured and process-driven manner which emphasizes continuity of the "same" strategy, rather than looking for smarter, evolving, options. Any change to strategy in such an IT operation, if any at all, takes place in a very incremental manner.

For smaller and medium-sized enterprises, the picture is different. Less financial and human resources accompanied by the constant focus on business growth force them to deal with the realities of the IT infrastructure in a sporadic manner.

Between these two groups of businesses, there still remains one common challenge: The continuous pressure to try and cap the costs of deploying the latest IT equipment while getting the most out of their system.

Specifically, the challenge for businesses is commonly affected by the costs of network hardware and maintenance, especially with 40% of IT budgets dedicated to infrastructure. Businesses are increasingly looking to invest more into applications to drive innovation and growth, and to achieve this, they will have to reduce networking infrastructure hardware and maintenance budgets.

This then raises the question: Do businesses miss signi­ficant capital and operational expenditure savings by prematurely upgrading networking infrastructure, and by insufficiently evaluating maintenance contracts? 

In a recent engagement with global research firm Forrester Consulting, Curvature Solutions tried to ascertain and analyse the state of IT infrastructure and operations in businesses. The global survey, which had 10% of its responses from Singapore businesses, aimed to investigate whether businesses allocated too much of their budget to refresh cycles and maintenance contracts because they have been pressured to make investment decisions under vendor influence.

Four key conclusions emerged from this survey. These were:

Cost-cutting dominates IT priorities - Many businesses spend too much time trying to shave a few dollars of their hardware costs when they can actually save more if they refocus their strategy on current maintenance;

IT suppliers tend to push businesses to rush their hardware refresh cycles, resulting in new and expensive installed equipment which only yield an incremental benefit to companies;

Too much working equipment is being disposed too soon - IT equipment have a useful life of about seven to 10 years but they are being disposed off between the third and the fifth year, generating unnecessary wastage;

 

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