“7 Things to Consider Before Replacing Business Equipment” by Matt Casadona
Business equipment is necessary to help your company thrive in a competitive marketplace. Whether you rely on simple office technology and tools or expensive equipment to test products, your business needs its equipment working correctly to improve productivity and overall business efficiency. As you already know, business equipment is costly, so you must consider many things before replacing it. Here’s what to consider before replacing business equipment.
The Needs of Your Business
Whether running a startup or a small business, you need technology. No business can succeed without some form of equipment. However, the types of technology and equipment you need won’t be the same for every business. Talk to your employees to create a list of needs that can be addressed by equipment and technology.
Remember, your employees use the equipment more often to know whether something is worth replacing or if you should shop around for a better product or price.
Age of Equipment
Never replace equipment that’s less than two years old if you don’t have to. On the other hand, if you’re simply upgrading equipment because you want to and have no real reason to do that, try to save your money for other essential business purchases. Your business investors don’t want to see you spending money on new equipment when your current equipment is working just fine.
The age of the equipment will typically impact how well it’s working. So if you notice it’s slowing down or no longer improving efficiency in your business, it might be time to replace it. First, however, you may need a simple repair. If no team member in your company knows the ins and outs of equipment, consider hiring a repairman who can help you determine the cause for breakdowns.
Old equipment can work just as well as new equipment as long as you take proper care of it. Instead of using and abusing equipment, follow the manufacturer’s care guidelines to ensure you won’t be responsible for premature wear and tear.
For example, if you notice a computer has slowed down and constantly freezes, you can talk to an IT person and have them take a look at the machine. You might find that some unused, old, and large software your employees no longer use may be the reason.
Effect on Productivity
Technology should help your business become more efficient by improving employee productivity. If workers consistently bring issues to your attention, it’s time to replace your equipment. For instance, if multiple team members have told you their computers are no longer loading, it might be time to replace all office computers.
However, if those computers are new, replacing them might not be cost-effective. So instead, contact a professional who can help you uncover the issue.
Having technology that works but doesn’t work well can slow down your employees and affect their abilities to get work completed. However, it could also cause other problems within your business, including customer service. For example, if your network is down, you can’t offer live chat support to customers, track orders, or take new orders. While slow or broken equipment impacts your employees’ abilities to do their jobs, it also affects how the public views your business.
Not all equipment has to be replaced if it can be digitised. For example, you might not need costly, space-consuming on-site storage when you store critical business information and documents in the cloud. Of course, not all equipment can be digitised, but it’s cheaper and less time-consuming to digitise the gear you can. For example, instead of repairing or replacing a printer you use for sending out invoices, you can digitise the process and send online invoices.
Remember, sometimes repairs are more costly than replacements. If your equipment has extensive problems, get an estimate from a repairman and compare it with the cost of buying new equipment, which comes with more advanced features. If you find the cost to repair is more expensive, it’s ultimately better to replace the equipment.
While buying new equipment for your business will require a significant upfront investment, the increase in productivity and efficiency will make up for it, and it may even end up saving you money in the long run.
Some equipment needs a simple upgrade, helping you avoid the higher cost of replacing equipment. For example, you can upgrade computers to help them work better without needing to buy new office equipment, helping you save a few hundred to a few thousand dollars. In addition, upgrading your equipment will keep it in proper working order for a few more years.
Before you buy new equipment, consider your leasing options. If budget is a major concern of yours, you might be able to save money in the short term by leasing business equipment. Be careful when renting, though. If you’re not careful, you could spend more money leasing than buying equipment. However, you’ll have access to the new features and products when you lease your business equipment. Additionally, your leasing company will ensure timely repairs, which may be covered in your contract.
If your equipment is broken down or working slowly, your employees probably have a lot of downtime. However, a repair could also result in several days of rest. If you’re constantly repairing equipment and machines, you’re increasing the amount of downtime in your business, which can have a significant impact on its ability to operate.
However, repairing equipment might be less costly and time-consuming than replacing a machine. Replacing equipment typically involves waiting for your replacement, installation, and even training. If you’re on a tight schedule, it might be best to replace broken equipment until you start noticing a trend. For example, if one piece of equipment constantly breaks down, it’s time to replace it.
Replacing Business Equipment
Before you replace any equipment used to increase productivity in your business, consider your budget and the factors that impact your employees most. If you notice a decrease in efficiency, talk to your employees and ask them what equipment they’re using so you can start doing your research to find better options.
About the Author
Matt Casadona, the Lead Digital PR Strategist at Inseev Interactive, has a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration, with a concentration in Marketing and a minor in Psychology. Matt is passionate about marketing and business strategy, working closely with Carlson Labs and Mako Design and enjoys San Diego life, travelling, and music.