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Four reasons to refresh your laptops now

Four reasons to refresh your laptops now

Back in 2020 when the Covid-19 pandemic swept across the world, businesses of all shapes and sizes were forced to adapt to a remote working model and quickly invest in laptops for their employees. Now, four years on, those laptops are coming to the end of their optimal lifecycle and could be negatively impacting your workforce’s efficiency, productivity and security. In simple terms, slow, glitchy laptops do nothing for your workforce’s motivation to use them, or to do work.

And, the way we work has fundamentally changed since that sudden shift in 2020, so what are the main considerations you should be making when planning your laptop refresh?

  • Processing power for modern demands
    In the fast-paced world of business, staying ahead often means keeping up with the latest technological advancements. As the adoption of Artificial Intelligence (AI) continues to rise, and with new Microsoft Teams updates demanding more processing power, ensuring that your business laptops have sufficient processing capacity to cope into the future is crucial. With resource-intensive AI tools such as Copilot becoming increasingly prevalent, now is the time to evaluate whether your current devices can handle the demands of tomorrow's technology – a good way to find out is survey your end users. If the processing power isn’t up to modern demands, the tools your teams want to use will just slow their machines down and hamper productivity.
  • Meeting workforce mobility needs
    The aftermath of the Covid-19 pandemic has reshaped the way we work, with remote and hybrid models becoming the new norm. In this landscape, meeting the collaboration and video conferencing needs of your workforce is paramount. Consider whether they’re using Teams or Zoom, are they operating in the field, are they plugging into a dock or do they run multi-screens – if so, consider the type and number of ports they may need. It’s also worth considering whether your laptops provide the necessary capabilities for seamless communication and productivity, regardless of where your employees are based – think about quality of wireless module, 5G enablement, screen size and weight.

  • Compatibility with the latest releases
    Moreover, staying compatible with the latest software and operating systems such as Windows 11 is essential for maintaining efficiency and useability. By ensuring your hardware specifications align with the demands of modern releases, you can leverage the full range of features and functionalities available, enhancing productivity, improving user experience and streamlining operations. Of course, most new laptops come as standard with Windows 11 installed.
  • Security against the latest threats
    Security rightly remains a top priority for businesses, especially in the face of ever-evolving cyber threats. Newer laptops often come equipped with improved security features designed to protect against potential risks. Investing in modern devices can provide your business with the peace of mind that comes from knowing you have the latest defences in place to safeguard your sensitive data and operations… and protect your business against financial loss. Watch out for deals that seem too good to be true from lesser-known suppliers or the ‘grey market’ – it’s not uncommon for cybercriminals to hijack devices as they pass through the supply chain to install malicious bots before you buy them. These bots lay silent for months collecting and often communicating your data to a third party for financial gain.

    Upgrading your business laptops is not merely about keeping up with trends; it's about future-proofing your operations and staying ahead in a competitive landscape. By ensuring sufficient processing power, meeting workforce needs, maintaining compatibility, and enhancing security, you are supporting your end users to be as productive and happy as they can be.

So you’ve decided to refresh… now what?

There’s more to a device refresh than just buying new devices. It is important to choose products that meet your specific requirements and preferences, so don’t just go by the best price. A trusted and reputable IT provider can offer you comprehensive solutions and services along with sound advice on which products meet your business goals and will work best with your preferred hardware refresh cycle.

Here are some key questions to ask your supplier to ensure you get it right and get the best value:

What will happen to the old devices? In order to reduce the risk of a potential data leak, redundant storage devices must be properly wiped (in compliance with privacy legislation). The law – and corporate responsibility – also means that you must approach IT disposal in an environmentally friendly way. Your supplier should be able to help with this.

Are there any cash back schemes available? Most of the big brands like HP, Lenovo, Microsoft, Dell etc offer cashback or trade-in schemes as incentives for customers to upgrade or refresh their devices. These schemes can provide financial benefits or discounts that help offset the cost of purchasing new equipment. It's worth inquiring with your supplier about any available cashback schemes or trade-in options that you might qualify for – some are even specific to your sector, such as education. Usually, you just need to provide your location, your old device details and a quote will be generated based on the condition of your laptops. This can potentially save your organisation money and provide additional value in the device refresh process.

What about warehousing or storage of my new laptops? Some suppliers will allow you to buy products at today’s prices or a special discount on bulk orders, and then offer to store them for free, so you can call units off for delivery when you need them. This service is often referred to as 'Bonded Stock' and can be great for when you don’t have space or want to risk storing lots of products. It's worth discussing with your supplier if bonded stock arrangements are available and how they might benefit your device refresh process. Enquire about bonded stock here

What assistance is available when it comes to setting up new devices? Setting up new devices can be a time-consuming management headache, especially if you're dealing with a large number. Your supplier should be able to provide assistance with the setup and imaging process. This might include pre-configuring devices with your specific settings, installing the Operating System (OS) and applications – worth looking at Microsoft Endpoint Manager with InTune to do all this and more, so the end user just opens their shiny new device, enters their password and away they go. Asset tagging is another service worth considering. Your supplier will affix a physical label to the devices, which contains a barcode and includes the asset name, serial number and anything you require. This info is all added to an inventory for future tracking and management of the device. Most suppliers offer this service and again it can be a great low-level task to outsource when you buy new devices. You might even get it thrown into the deal for free.

What about financing our new laptops? Financing your laptop refresh purchase is a great way of getting new kit without the large up-front investment. Leasing is the most popular, has little upfront cost, allows for regular affordable monthly payments and enables you to spread the cost over a period of time. And, it’s tax efficient. At the end of the primary term you can continue to lease the asset, arrange to give it back/sell it, or request to buy the item outright for a fee. Just ask your supplier about finance options.

Thinking about refreshing your devices? Get in touch for a free quote.