When it comes to buying equipment for a workforce, you're faced with a balancing act. Between the cost of the equipment, its capabilities, and its practicality, it can be hard to narrow down what the ideal workplace machine will look like. To top it off, the issue is made even more confusing thanks to widespread supply issues for computer components. Despite all this, standardizing your workplace's computing infrastructure can have real effects on a company's bottom line.
Benefits of Standardization
Regardless of how carefully you pick a machine for your company to use, or how well it is maintained, hardware can break down with little notice. Whether it be the fault of a power surge, or a laptop bag left on the top of a company car, computers break all the time, but replacing them can be costly and time-consuming. This can lead to a drain on your IT budget, as well as a loss of productivity for the company and a loss of time for all affected. However, using standardized machines means that one can be easily switched out for a replacement when something goes wrong. Your employee can be up and running in no time, and the broken computer can be repaired or replaced in time for the next unforeseen happenstance.
Maintaining and Using Software
Within any company's IT infrastructure, there are endless interdependencies that allow software to work properly, as well as to interconnect without issue. Even minor updates to one of those dependencies can bring a system to a screeching halt, resulting in company time being spent fixing issues instead of generating income. Whether it's versions of operating systems (including updates between major versions) or versions of program dependencies like Java Runtime Environments or Microsoft frameworks, it's vital that computers stay consistent with each other. This way, when a problem does crop up, the fix can be applied to all machines at once, and your employees are not slowed down by individualized updates.
Planning for Standardization
More important than ensuring that all devices are standardized is ensuring that all devices are capable of completing the task at hand. A good place to start is by listing out the requirements your business would have of a computer.
- What software does an employee have to use during the course of their day?
- How many programs are likely to be open at once?
- Will employees be able to access the internet?
- What software needs to be able to interact with other software?
Questions like these four will begin to point you in the right direction for what sorts of requirements you may have for office computers. When the entire infrastructure is based around meeting the needs of each employee, then it will be easier to scale a workforce larger once the business grows.
If you'd like to speak to an expert about setting requirements or standardizing your business IT infrastructure, contact us today!