IT Hardware Lifecycle Management
What Is IT Hardware Lifecycle Management?
Hardware lifecycle management is the process of getting the most return on investment out of your hardware by following the proper maintenance and support steps: Source, Install, Support, Recycle. Server, storage, and network hardware lifecycle management aims to keep hardware up and running from the time it is first purchased (or traded in) to when it is ultimately disposed of.
Following The IT Hardware Lifecycle
Just like with any piece of equipment, proper maintenance and care is essential for getting the most bang for your buck. By following the stages of hardware lifecycle management, businesses and IT managers can greatly reduce data center costs, increase upgrade flexibility, and extend the life of their devices. And guess what? When done correctly, server, storage, and network hardware lifecycle management stages don’t take much time or effort to follow.
The Hardware Lifecycle Stages
We've broken down the lifecycle of a device or hardware into four simple stages: Source, Install, Support, and Recycle. Let's go over how M Global can help you navigate each of them.
More on the Hardware Lifecycle Management Stages
The first step in the lifecycle management process is sourcing your hardware. After a full assessment of the existing data center is completed and IT needs are identified, businesses must choose whether to purchase or lease their equipment. Once you have a plan in place for expanding or upgrading your IT hardware infrastructure, your next decision is whether to lease the hardware you need or buy it outright.
Investing in new hardware can end up saving you money in the long run if you plan to keep the same devices an extended period. Purchasing your own equipment also allows you to better customize your data center to your exact specifications, I mean, who knows your data needs better than you?
If you don’t want to take on the upfront cost of purchasing new equipment, leasing can save you money in the short-term by spacing out payments more evenly (though this can also be accomplished through financing new equipment). Leasing also puts business on a more flexible track if they anticipate a lot of growth or change in their data center needs.
M Global is able to provide our customers with parts from trusted sources and used, refurbished, and new devices across multiple OEMs.
Hardware purchased from M Global is tested and backed by our Limited Hardware Warranty.
Once you’ve sourced your hardware, it’s time for installation. It’s common for businesses to use a trusted hardware reseller to help install their new equipment. Setting up servers, storage, and networking devices on your own can be tricky and time-consuming if you’re unfamiliar with the new equipment—especially if you’re managing multiple locations. If you have the time and know-how to handle a smooth deployment then more power to you! Check out our tips to make your next server install as painless as possible.
If you need a part installed or your equipment set up, M Global can help you out. With our Smart Hands Services, field engineers travel to your location to handle a variety of IT tasks including device installation, parts replacement, and rack and stack.
The third and longest step in the hardware maintenance lifecycle is support. Every piece of hardware needs proper support and maintenance to extend its lifespan and maximize ROI. For reliable maintenance, you basically have two options, OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer) or TPM (Third Party Maintenance) support.
OEM support comes with the purchase of new equipment while TPM support can be added on to new or used equipment at any time. While businesses tend to feel more comfortable with OEMs because of their recognizable brands, TPM providers can offer less expensive, more flexible contracts and can service EOSL (End of Service Life) and EOL (End of Life) equipment. There are pros and cons to both options, so it ultimately comes down to which is the best fit for you. If you’d like to learn more about which options would be the best suits your data center environment, check out our blog on OEM vs TPM. In addition, the age of your hardware will likely be factored into your hardware support decision. Luckily, it's not an all or nothing sort of deal. Find out how you can combine OEM support and third party maintenance to meet your unique needs.
With M Global, not only do parts and devices come with a Limited Hardware Warranty, but we'll also provide support for the other equipment in you data center. We specialize in working with clients to create custom SLAs that will adapt to your data center needs.
The last major step in hardware lifecycle management is to properly dispose of old equipment before it becomes too much of data risk and financial burden. Inevitably, even the most well-kept and maintained equipment will eventually break down, causing your data center to run at less-than-ideal efficiency.
When the time to retire old equipment comes (or you’re just ready to upgrade) you have a few options:
a) try to earn some extra cash by reselling your hardware, or
b) recycle your hardware in accordance with federal, state, and local electronics disposal laws.
Taking on either of these tasks can be difficult on their own, that’s why it’s recommended to enlist the help of a trusted hardware reseller or other business that provides ITAD (Information Technology Asset Disposal) services.
When it's time to move on from old hardware, we'll help you get top dollar for your equipment. Our ITAD services take care of the entire asset disposal process including data sanitation, asset buy back, and asset disposition. We make sure to properly recycle old hardware and only use recycling services certified by BAN e-Stewards.
Let M Global Create Ease in Your Hardware Management Lifecycle
Contact us if you have any questions about hardware lifecycle management or how to get the most out of your equipment. We're happy to assist you at any stage and will work with you to find the best option for your unique IT environment!
By Jon Stubblefield