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What Is a Technology Lifecycle Management Plan?

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Want to hear a scary story? In the wee hours of a chilly December morning, Google suffered a system outage. The outage occurred during one of their routine maintenance processes. During the relatively short 37 minute outage, YouTube, a Google service, lost $1.7 million in ad revenue alone. This statistic neglects to illustrate how the outage affected the millions of businesses who rely on YouTube.

The trickle-down effects of such an outage are too vast to quantify. Two years later, the internet is still reeling from this failure.

Enterprise relies on services and hardware to run daily operations. Additionally, technology services are integral for the ability of any company to scale. Unseen cracks in the infrastructure lose money and prevent growth. (Use this formula to calculate the cost of your downtime.)

The fact is you can't afford any downtime. None of us can. Yet, aging (and ignored) infrastructure will cause downtime and mayhem down the line. Keep reading to learn how technology lifecycle management helps you avoid downtime and improve revenue and innovation.

Support and Protect Critical Infrastructure

Everything enterprise runs on starts with a contract. But, before that ever happens, dedicated members of your workforce have a lot of work in front of them. They research, deliberate, contact, and haggle with every single vendor and service provider. This draining list of minutiae costs crucial hours. No one has time to do these things, yet they must get done.

Unfortunately, you can't afford to ignore it.

These processes are tedious, and they eat up large chunks of time. So, what happens to dull things that are annoying and take a long time? They quite often don't get done.

Outsourcing technology management ensures that these essential services are completed. More than that, when technology professionals negotiate contracts, warranties, and service prices, you can rest easy knowing that you're saving money and getting the best deal. In addition to current costs, a technology lifecycle management plan also projects the future costs of technology services.

These forecasts give companies a yardstick that measures their unique technology needs alongside their spending. This budgeting power tool gives businesses the freedom to innovate.

Too Slow to Grow

Technology lifecycle management monitors and oversees the lifecycle of business tech. Everyday service contracts expire, and hardware breaks down or phases out. Everything operates with an expiration date.

The alarming thing is that many have already expired.

Unfortunately, new service and hardware acquisition takes a painfully long time to complete because of the significant time investment. As a result, new technology trickles in slowly, over long periods. But, all the while, the old stuff has already started to decline. This piecemeal acquisition process all but makes it impossible for the average IT department to keep track of when and how to switch aging hardware out—let alone to monitor the costs.

When hardware breaks down, the adjacent systems must work harder to compensate. The extra work shouldered leads to a faster rate of decline. Like a domino, when one chip falls, it isn’t much longer before the others start dropping too. This may be one server doing the work of two or excruciatingly outdated, laggy systems. The time wasted is a drain on productivity and revenue.

Recognize and Replace Weak Links in the Chain

Like the humans that helm them, companies accrue unnecessary and unused services. Often with recurring payments, those services pollute your income streams. Eventually, even perfectly functioning hardware and services will prove useless after some time.

The first step in a technology lifecycle management plan is a complete inventory and audit. An inventory and audit produce a real-time snapshot of your entire IT web to see what's there, how much it's costing you, and when it should retire. It will also scope out opportunities for improvement.

Small services and hardware are easy to forget. Those easy-to-forget cogs in the machine might be useless, in which case the revenue supporting them is wasted. On the other hand, they could be infinitely valuable and perform all sorts of background functions—that is, until they stop working.

A technology lifecycle management plan tracks those key points from the cradle to the grave, so you don't have to.

Manage Proactively with a Technology Lifecycle Management Plan

Gone are the days when an outage meant that a storm knocked the lights offline, and the only significant interruption was that the Xerox machine stopped working. If your company is successful, it requires a heavy amount of technical assistance systems to support it. If left unmanaged, the intricate web of hardware and services is susceptible to deterioration and breakdown.

Today an outage of one hour costs a minimum of $100K: the larger your company, the greater the loss. In addition, technology failures leave your company vulnerable to cyberattacks and loss of revenue, not to mention the loss of your clients’ confidence. 

However, without technology, there is no growth, but mismanaged technology doesn’t fare much better. When lifecycle management takes over these mundane processes, your company becomes infinitely scalable.

At LinkSource, we know that every company requires a unique mix of solutions to support its growth. We are expert identifiers of weak cogs and growth inhibitors. Lifecycle management is a vital part of maintaining your critical IT infrastructure. It determines the viability of aging hardware and software. To learn more about how technology management services can support your company’s profitability and growth, subscribe to our blog!