The majority of small businesses today rely heavily on hardware and software systems in a variety of areas including, operations, production, and business planning. Therefore, knowing how and when to upgrade these systems is essential to the health of the business and can make a big impact on the bottom line. Here are a few things to consider before upgrading the hardware in your small business.
Why are you looking to upgrade? Depending on your needs, certain upgrades may not necessitate purchasing a whole new system. To increase speed, processing power, and available memory, you can add additional RAM to your existing hardware. You can also add devices, such as CD burners and hard drives.
What are the estimated costs of not upgrading? Knowing this information is important when deciding the right time to completely change over your system. When the costs of not upgrading, such as a decrease in productivity or lost potential sales, is greater than the cost of new equipment, then it is time to change the system.
Factor in all the costs associated with revamping your system. Consider all the costs that are indirectly related to acquiring new hardware. Do you need to hire someone to set it up? Do you need to make any renovations to support the new equipment? Are you also buying advanced software?
What are your expected needs in the future? How do you anticipate using your hardware in the future? Is your business currently growing or changing in some way? Before purchasing any equipment, make sure it will be able to handle any grow or operational changes.
- What is your available budget? Obviously, having the most cutting edge equipment will mean nothing if buying it leaves you bankrupt. If your cash flow is tight, then look into your options. Either compromise on the quality of the equipment or put off getting completely new hardware in favor of enhancing your current system. Alternatively, you should consider computer leasing. If you get a lease with an option to upgrade at the end of the term, you also can keep up with the latest advancements in technology.
In short, many factors must be considered before making any changes to the hardware that your small business runs on. Do your research in order to get the right fit for your business.