Is your team outfitted with the right computers for how they work?

A common scenario we see looks like this: A company’s hardware hasn’t been updated since they opened their doors umpteen years ago, and their computers are becoming obsolete. Budget is finally allocated to replace the PCs—and a blanket purchase order is created for 15 identical machines and their installation. Done.

(And there are a lot of companies that will gladly fill that order, sell you the hardware and wish you luck on their way out the door.)

The only problem with this model is that not everyone on your team works the same way or has the same tech needs. We’ve found that the most cost-effective approach is to determine your user profiles and invest in the appropriate hardware class for each. Here are common user profiles:

1) The Power User, your team’s tech-savvy multi-taskers. They’re the ones with loaded-up taskbars and a gazillion tabs and windows open at any given moment. This intensive user needs a robust machine that can handle multiple processes simultaneously with ease.

2) The Graphics/CAD User, your team’s designer or engineer. They work with large files that gobble up memory. These users need high processing power, ample and speedy storage and dedicated graphics capabilities—as well as large, bright and high-pixel display(s).

3) The Typical User, your team’s standard user. This is your average Joe, who doesn’t have the super-speed or super-memory needs of the first two profiles.

4) The Occasional User, your team’s data entry person. Often in less-intensive computing areas such as shipping or receiving, they typically have only one or two windows open all day, so don’t need the latest and greatest in computing capabilities.

Our team evaluates which computers truly need to be replaced, which employees need which resources, and how to stretch your budget. We recommend a cost-effective “PC refresh,” replacing a portion of your equipment each year. Typical machines have a 5-year lifespan; by planning a cyclical refresh, you can budget to replace 25% of PCs every year and the server every fifth year. (Our maintenance contracts support this approach by including new PC installations for up to 25% of your computers at no additional labor cost.)

By standardizing user profiles, you have the flexibility to move machines around to the appropriate user. For example, you can start a refresh by upgrading power users to a more recent generation. (Statistics show that if you give power users the newest PCs, they’ll get even more work done). Then, you can repurpose the power user’s computer for a data entry or shipping person, saving the cost of a new computer.

Your hardware should fit the way your team works, rather than the other way around. At Future Link, we don’t want to just sell you hardware—we want to make sure your team works well, with the right-fit technology. Ready for a “computer refresh”? Click here to schedule a call with one of our experts.