IT Asset Service and Repairs – How a Detailed “Cradle-to-Grave” Service Policy Saves You Money
Companies make large investments in a multitude of IT assets for their users to be productive. That is usually the easy part, however, most companies struggle to build the best strategy for repair services and how to determine when the products’ usefulness has come to an end.
- Why choosing a Repair strategy isn’t easy?
- Highly Distributed
- Assets are usually distributed among several locations within an enterprise. Making it harder to manage, if the equipment fails or needs to be upgraded.
- Varying Urgency
- Downtime of an asset usually has a direct correlation in a decline of user productivity or reduction revenues
- Unpredictable Costs
- The costs of time and material repairs can add up quickly and are hard to predict and forecast
- Cost Stacking
- Service contracts through OEM’s are costly and typically the OEM utilizes a partner to deliver the service creating a middleman situation raising your cost of service.
- Highly Distributed
- Repair Solutions
- On-site (highest cost)
- Depot repair – equipment is shipped to a repair facility (lower cost)
- Remotely resolved (least expensive) -can’t resolve all issues
- Different urgency depending on end users’ role, for instance;
- A device the captures revenue would be a high urgency
- Higher cost resources will need faster repair times (Executives)
- Manufacturing plant would need to maintain higher up time
- Equipment type
- Large heavy assets would need to be fixed at the location
- Mobile Computers, Scanners or Laptop devices can be shipped and repaired at a service depot
- Less expensive, yet critical equipment can have an on-site spare pool and utilize a service depot to do repairs
- Different urgency depending on end users’ role, for instance;
Patient Monitor Repair, Refurbishment, and Antimicrobial Surface Protection
We protect your investment and reduce downtime in your operations by repairing, refurbishing, and adding microbial coatings to your patient monitoring equipment and other medical IT hardware.
End-of-Life Decisions and Their Complexities
- Motives: If it was up to an Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) they would like you to follow their product sales path when they sunset products, so they can sell you more product- however the capital investment you made in equipment may have a higher ROI, as the equipment may have many more years of useful life.
- Costs: The cost to repair continues to increase to the point that the repair costs become greater than the value of the asset or worse the cost of a new device
- Frequency: The frequency of the device failure creates a big drop in user productively and employee engagement or actual revenue loss.
So, what should an enterprise consider when designing the most cost-effective repair and product lifecycle strategy for their IT assets?
One Solution for Every Aspect of IT Lifecycle Management
Investing in a detailed, “cradle-to-grave” service policy is the most straightforward, most streamlined, and most economical way to overcome the challenges of device service, maintenance, and repair. This type of program begins with getting devices into the hands of your enterprise’s workforce and training them to fully, and correctly, use them. From there, the service agreement encompasses the full support of deployed devices through their entire lifecycle. This includes repair, user and IT support, a portal for creating service tickets, and reverse logistics for full visibility into where devices are at any given time.
This type of program is designed specifically to provide the best return on your mobile investment throughout your devices’ lifetime and provide your enterprise with added benefits. It does this in several ways. First, it removes the responsibility of managing a large pool of mobile and IT devices from your IT staff, freeing them up to take on new tasks that better fit their skills set and cost structure to better serve your operations. Your operational efficiency is then enhanced and simplified through streamlined deployment, support, management, and services for resolving issues and managing mobile security.
This type of detailed, “cradle-to-grave” service program is beneficial, but is it affordable? In a nutshell, yes! An IT asset lifecycle management program reduces operational costs by alleviating administrative burdens from your IT staff and systems. And this is done at a significantly lower price than you might think.
Best Practices for High-Risk Devices
Obviously, some types of devices within your fleet, such as handheld and mobile computers, are more prone to breakages and malfunctions than others. For these items, there are several best practices for managing their distribution, service, and repair, so device downtime is minimized, and operational efficiency isn’t negatively impacted.
A well-designed portal for the efficient processing and tracking of failed units through the repair cycle is a must. IT and Operational staff spending undue time in the administration of repair logistics is a no-go. The best designed portals will provide you with functional due-back, repair efficiency, and analytical reports that alleviate the time spent gathering and tracking this information with your internal assets, with the end result being less overall administration time required from your staff even when considering the time required to open tickets.
Then, the quality of the repair is key, but how your service provider arrives at that quality repair is critical. In a perfect world, every failed unit would just be replaced with a brand-new unit. Unfortunately, that would result in a rather cost prohibitive service offering. The best service providers analyze repair data, incoming problem descriptions, and failure rates for both individual units and the base of units as a whole. All of this data is used to identify trouble areas that can be addressed, provide preventative measures for each device coming in for service, and effectively reduce the failure rates for all devices on contract This reduction in failure rate results in operational efficiencies for their customers, and reduced costs for all
Finally, one size does not fit all. Many OEMs offer a few service packages, and some offer many, but fairly often nothing offered is exactly what you had in mind. Too simple, too complex, too mind numbingly convoluted. Every situation is different and requires its own solution. To achieve the best service package for your company, find a provider that will work with you in a consultative fashion, developing and implementing a service package around your needs, rather than you checking a box for someone else’s version of the best plan for you.
What About Servicing Large, Hard-to-Ship Devices?
As crucial as mobility is to your organization, some pieces of mission-critical equipment are large and generally immobile. When these devices malfunction, do you have a streamlined, efficient, and economical plan to get them serviced and back up and running?
Shipping large devices, such as industrial label, laser, and multifunction printers, doesn’t make much sense. For these large devices, a repair and service policy with on-site repairs is ideal. The service provider should have a nationwide presence and have several options and timelines — 4-hour, 8-hour, and next-day — for service. End-users should have the same convenience to create tickets, and the same traceability and visibility capabilities into the service repair hub with on-site repairs as they would with off-site and depot repairs. Finally, your on-site repair should also include on-site preventative maintenance to ensure your large devices keep running smoothly.
What Does the Right Partner for a “Cradle-to-Grave” Service Policy Look Like?
When selecting a partner for your service, repair, and management needs, you should first consider their reputation. Do they have a track record of proven reliability and innovation? What testimonials and success stories are their clients giving? Do some research and learn what others in your industry have to say about your potential technology partner.
Trust is a critical element of any relationship, and that’s no different when finding your services, repair, and management provider. We believe experience is a key component of building trust within a partnership. At DecisionPoint, we have over 30 years of experience providing service, repairs, and lifecycle management expertise. We know what it takes for our clients to always have the technology in their hands that allows them to make better, faster, and more accurate decisions regardless of their location.
With experience comes knowledge. We know every business is unique, so we consult with you and design customized deployment services for every customer’s individual needs and help minimize downtime. We also design and provide lifecycle services for all deployed devices that increase operational efficiency, give ongoing end-user support, and quickly resolve equipment issues.
Finally, Mobile Device Management (MDM) is a key differentiator between a good technology partner for repair, services, and management and a great one. Your provider should have asset tracking abilities to help you monitor all of your devices, even if they’re powered off, in repair, in the field, or in a spares pool. This gives complete visibility in their entire fleet. This visibility of all devices is imperative to making sure the right technology is always in your workforce’s hands, so they make the best decisions, with the most accurate information, at the right time.
Ending the life of your laptops, mobile computers, printers, monitors, and other IT assets is a tough decision, and it isn’t always the best one. Often, there is still some useful life within them. By establishing a detailed, “cradle-to-grave” service, repair, and management policy with a trusted partner, you can soon begin reaping the benefits cost savings, boosted productivity, and streamlined workflows that weren’t possible with service and repair from OEMs.
Curious to see how a customized service, repair, and management policy can benefit your business? Visit our Implementation and Deployment Services page to learn more! You can also contact us any time to learn more from a DecisionPoint team member!
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About Royce Digital:
As a proud DecisionPoint Company, Royce Digital Systems is committed to delivering end-to-end mobile solutions and managed services to healthcare workers and facilities across North America. Our solutions help increase productivity, boost accuracy, and improve patient care.