When is the Right Time to Upgrade Your IT Hardware?

IT hardware is an essential component of business success. Without the right hardware, you cannot track data, help your employees collaborate, create and stay on budget, help clients on time, and successfully navigate many other business processes. Unfortunately, like any technology, it does not last forever. At some point, you will need to replace your IT hardware to keep up with your advanced technological needs. But the main question is, when is the right time to upgrade your IT hardware? And do you have to upgrade as soon as an original equipment manufacturer (OEM) requests that you do?

Let’s take a look at the two key indicators that will help you know if it is time to upgrade your hardware:

EOL (end-of-life)

As part of lifecycle management, OEMs will announce hardware assets as end-of-life (EOL) status between four to six years. The main reason is that as OEMs release new products, it becomes more expensive to support older assets. Instead, they begin to focus on maintenance and support for their latest hardware assets. Once hardware assets are declared to be end-of-life, support will become quite expensive if available at all. Does it mean you have to run and upgrade it right away? No. In fact, with the assistance of a third party maintenance (TPM) company, assets can have extended lives and remain in perfect working condition for years after their EOL dates.

EOSL (end of service life)

End of service life (EOSL) or end of support is when the manufacturer not only stops selling a piece of equipment, they no longer offer maintenance services and support. EOSL is the final phase of a piece of equipment’s lifecycle in the OEM’s book. Even in this situation, there is no reason to rush and upgrade your IT hardware. Again, with TPM coverage, you don’t need to pull the plug on your equipment if it works, and it serves its purpose.

The following graphic shows the inverse relationship between OEMs and TPMs. As the years progress, you can see how the support of your hardware changes and at what point you will need to consider upgrading your hardware:

Inverse relationship OEM vs TPM

Overall, OEMs favor a new hardware sale over a maintenance contract. But there is no need to upgrade your IT hardware early, especially if the equipment is fully functional. Being able to keep the equipment functional longer also extends the impact of your IT investment. It is your business, and you should decide when to upgrade, not the OEM.

Smart 3rd Party provides the strategic solutions and flexibility you need long after OEMs announce EOL and EOSL. Contact us today to find out how we can help your business or call us at 800.583.3894.

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