4 key factors to consider within the IT Procurement Process

4 key factors to consider within the IT Procurement Process

Apr 27th 2022

The IT Procurement process will oftentimes look very different when comparing one company to another. Ranging from on-demand purchasing at the time of need, to highly strategic plans that span an entire year or more, different plans make sense for different businesses.

A common starting point is determining minimum hardware specs, as well as the total number of machines required. Easy enough. However, there are new elements to consider for 2022 and 2023.

In an effort to educate decision makers on some of these considerations, we will take an in-depth look at what’s changing in the IT Procurement process, and aid you in coming to a conclusion on what makes the most sense for your company.


1. Windows 11

Are there immediate benefits to making the switch? This should be the very first factor to recognize, as it will probably have the largest impact on the hardware options available to you. While most of the hardware requirements to run Windows 11 are not exceedingly high, the machines WILL however require a TPM chip.

TPM stands for “Trusted Platform Module” and it is essentially a tiny chip installed on the motherboard or integrated within the CPU. This chip acts as a cryptography key or authenticator. They are integrated in newer machines, but have never been a requirement for an Operating System until now with Windows 11.


Meeting the Requirements and Early Adoption rate

In a recent study, Lansweeper, an IT Asset Management Software company, polled 30 million Windows devices, across 60,000 organizations to learn more about Windows 11 usage. They discovered that only 0.52% of the machines were on Windows 11, and that 55% of the machines polled didn’t meet the requirements.

The lack of adoption rate shouldn’t be surprising, because new Operating Systems typically go through a period of growing pains with compatibility and quality of life issues. The added barrier to requiring new machines certainly doesn’t help either.


Windows 10 Official Support until 2025

Another important aspect is that new Operating Systems typically go through a period of growing pains. Compatibility and Quality of Life issues can take months or years to work out. Combining this with the fact that Windows 10 will be officially supported by Microsoft until 2025, we have 3 years (as of the writing of this blog) until that time.

Perfectly aligning with that 3 year period is the optimal refresh rate for business computers. In a whitepaper by Wipro Technologies and Intel, titled “ Using Total Cost of Ownership to Determine Optimal PC Refresh Lifecycles”, it was determined that the optimal refresh rate for business computers was every 3 years.


Our recommendation:
It’s not yet worth making the switch.

Refreshing your IT hardware now can cover you until 2025, when transitioning to 11 makes more sense in terms of both productivity and financial investment.

Refurbished business desktop computers fit into this situation perfectly. Established off-lease providers like Blair Tech will bridge the gap to 2025 with reliable computers at an affordable price.



2. Work from Home Employees

Over recent years, the amount of remote employees in companies was trending upwards, and the COVID pandemic spiked it further. Data collected by Statista shows that at a year into the pandemic, 58.6% of the total U.S. workforce was working remotely. For some companies, the remote worker business model will remain, yet others need to bring people back on location.

The decision of your company’s structure is best left for you to decide, but what we do know is that fast and easy deployment of your computers should be of the utmost importance. This is achieved in different ways, based on how much of your staff will be working remotely.


Our recommendation:
Don’t underestimate the value to be gained in deployment.

Blair Tech recognizes the importance and helps our current partners in the following ways.

For remote employees
• Direct shipping to end user
• Pre-installed custom image with all required software
• “Office in a box” solution. Any additional peripherals can be included. (Monitor, mouse, keyboard, webcam, headset, etc.)

For office employees
• Flexible shipping options to optimize deployment. Palleted in bulk, broken up into smaller user groups, or even individually packaged.
• Pre-installed images and software for various user groups at the location.



3. Challenges in Forecasting

For some vendors, there is an estimated six-month delay.
- Barry Shurkey, CIO at NTT Data Services, said in an interview with Wall Street Journal

Purchasing new business computers is becoming unreasonable. Long fulfillment times to bring in new machines is creating headaches for CIOs and IT Directors everywhere. No longer can they purchase new computers as needed, or stick to the procurement schedule that had worked in the past..

A solution that some companies have moved to is simply overestimating their needs, and buying in higher quantities. However, while bundling an entire year’s worth of needs into a massive single order is a viable solution for some companies, most cannot afford it.


Our recommendation:
Avoid the New computer market completely. Go with refurbished instead.

International supply chain woes and chip shortages have no impact on computers that are already in circulation domestically. This allows for a more sustainable, recurring purchase strategy.

Solutions Experts at Blair Tech are helping IT Directors all over the world buy computers as needed, with less strain on forecasting and their budget.



4. IT Budget Breakdown

Leveraging some information from a survey of over 1000 IT decision-makers, we can make some assertions about how technology spending has evolved over the past two years. Here are some key takeaways.

  • With more integration of cloud computing, there has been a small decrease in IT Hardware spending, down from 33% of the budget in 2020 to 30% in 2022.
  • Cloud spending has gone up from 22% to 26%.
  • It’s estimated that 25% of workers will begin working remotely on a permanent basis.

Taking this information into account, it’s clear that more companies are becoming reliant on Cloud Storage. The massive uptick in remote work is likely the largest influence for the shift.

Here’s the logical reasoning as to why. Options for facilitating collaborative access to important files and documents are either Cloud Storage or using On Site Servers. The problem with On Site servers is that remote employees are unable to connect unless using a VPN (which can be a headache for lesser technically inclined employees, as well as the IT support helping them). For this reason, the increase in Cloud spending makes complete sense.

So the extra spend in Cloud Storage can be justified, but at the cost of having less to use for IT Procurement.


Our recommendation:
Meet your hardware needs within your budget, through reliable refurbished computers.

With the largest supply of off-lease equipment in North America, and as the Microsoft Global Partner for two years in a row (2020 & 2021), look no further than the best in the business to partner with.

Provide your company more financial flexibility, by saving money on computer hardware costs, while still maintaining the same level of quality and productivity. See what makes Blair Tech different by speaking with one of our Solutions Experts right now.