Best Practices of IT Hardware Procurement | CXtec

Posted by The Team at CXtec on Jul 26, 2022 9:12:53 AM

Whether you're shifting your data center or replacing the existing technology assets, proper IT hardware procurement is vital. It...

Whether you're shifting your data center or replacing the existing technology assets, proper IT hardware procurement is vital. It is the process of buying new technology gear from different vendors. Purchasing and installing new IT assets can improve your infrastructure and operational performance. It can also reduce the risk of security, compatibility, and compliance issues. Many people think IT procurement is about comparing different systems' pricing and features. Well, in reality, this is not true. It is a complex process with many activities. Some of them include vendor management, asset management, and product quality assurance.

Businesses also face various issues during hardware procurement. These challenges include inconsistent product prices, vendor conflicts, and raw material shortages. The lack of procurement knowledge can also result in buying of poor-quality IT assets. You can overcome such issues by following the best practices of IT hardware procurement as outlined below:

Evaluate your organization's technology hardware needs

Before buying new IT assets, analyze your business needs carefully. This is important because IT procurement helps improve your business operations and profits. You can avoid unnecessary procurement delays with well-defined business goals.

Here are some questions that will help you plan hardware procurement in a better way:

  • Which business needs are the most crucial?
  • Does the new IT equipment align with our business requirements?
  • Does the new hardware easily integrate with our existing business processes and workflows?

Answering these questions can help you make better hardware buying decisions. They can also fast-pace your IT procurement journey.

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Set up a robust hardware procurement policy

Create a solid IT procurement policy to simplify the new hardware buying process. The policy should include guidelines for vendor management, quality assurance, and invoicing. It should also have guidelines for employee training related to new IT equipment. Include every important procurement step in the policy. Don't forget to share this policy with team members. This will help avoid any confusion and delay during hardware procurement. The policy can also serve as a blueprint for the timely execution of your IT procurement project.

Assess your hardware health and warranty status

Before starting IT procurement, examine your existing hardware's current health and warranty status. Evaluate things like asset model number, launch year, EOSL/EOL date, and warranty status. Analyzing this data will help you make informed decisions during the hardware procurement. Such an audit will also help you identify assets that need a refresh. It will also allow you to find assets whose useful life can be increased by putting them on third-party maintenance support.

Involve key stakeholders throughout the procurement process

The decision to buy new hardware generally involves different members of an organization. Hence, you should engage all the key stakeholders during the procurement process. Take advice from them at every step to find the best hardware for your business. It will also help you spend within your total budget limit. You can reach out to IT, finance, and C-level employees during the procurement process to find the ideal hardware. All project members should be able to see important procurement documents at every step. Use a procurement system to improve transparency when buying new IT assets.

Perform risk analysis to avoid financial and compliance issues

IT procurement brings different types of challenges for companies. Some of them include financial and compliance issues, technology failure, and supply chain risks. You must perform an in-depth risk analysis to avoid such problems. Identify both internal and external risks for your procurement project. After risk identification, classify them under high, medium, and low impact categories. This will allow you to identify and address the most pressing issues immediately. You can also take the help of procurement specialists who are good at minimizing the hardware buying-related risks.

Source IT assets with long-term goals in mind

When buying new IT assets, thinking beyond your current business needs is essential. Keep in mind that your technology needs will change over time as your business grows. Hence, source new hardware while keeping future requirements in mind. Data-driven prediction of your future hardware needs is one of the useful ways to smartly source new IT assets. When buying new hardware, you should also focus on reducing your total cost of ownership (TCO). Look for opportunities to optimize TCO and hardware return on investment. For example, you can subscribe to third-party maintenance services to increase the useful life of your IT assets.

Establish strong relationships with procurement vendors

IT vendors play an important role in the success of any hardware procurement project. Hence, build healthy relationships with your suppliers through honest and transparent communication. Tell them about your expectations early to avoid any hiccups at later stages. Pay your vendors on time and be flexible with payment terms to earn their trust. To ensure your vendors have stability in revenues, engage with them for a long period through repeat orders. You can also set up a self-service portal for vendors so they can quickly submit invoices, proposals, and other vital documents.

Maximize the value of your technology hardware with CXtec

Working with a trusted hardware vendor is important to achieve the best results during IT procurement. A reputable IT hardware vendor like CXtec can provide customized solutions at cost-effective prices. Compared to most OEMs in the market, we can deliver your ideal product timely, thanks to our global service delivery capabilities. From new to pre-owned network gear, our certified experts can suggest the best solution for your business. Unlike OEMs, we also provide a lifetime warranty, zero hidden charges, and faster lead times for most of our products. This helps you reap the best returns from your technology hardware investment. To know more about our network hardware solutions, you can connect with our experts.

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