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Network refresh. . .I’ll give you a moment to stop cringing.

Better? Ok.

It’s something that most business leaders don’t want to think about, but needs to be considered when your network reaches the three-year mark. A network refresh is an investment, there’s no doubt about that, but the cost of doing nothing and continuing to work on an aging network most likely has greater costs that you may not even realize.

Consider the fact that network components begin to deteriorate after three years. That means they require more maintenance than new equipment. Add in that the demands on today’s networks are much higher than ever (stop and think about how much more work do you do using technology than you did a few years ago!) and will only continue to go up, and that you’re asking equipment designed for a previous age to deliver on these increased demands, and you have a recipe for a network break down.

Let’s take a look at some of the underlying costs associated with an aging network:

Performance

If your network continually goes down or needs maintenance, your team is losing work time. This costs you money by decreasing staff productivity and results. Take a moment to calculate the money lost on just employee salary for an hour of down time…

                Average Employee Hourly Rate x Number of Employees = Employee Salary lost per hour

Say your average employee hourly rate is $20 and you have 10 employees – that’s $200 for just one hour of downtime! And that’s only the tip of the iceberg. What about customer satisfaction when your business comes to a halt, without access to critical data? If a network crashes, it will usually be down for at least a few hours before a technician can be onsite to remediate any problems.

Operations

Aging networks are far more inefficient than modern technology and have much higher power consumption rates. (The new HP ProLiant Gen8 Servers boast a 6x performance increase for demanding workloads over older servers.) These older network components end up raising your operating expenses, which is an ongoing expense.

Service

Ongoing network problems are another common issue. With these issues comes more service calls to repair minor or major issues. Perhaps the newest version of your accounting software is no longer supported by your old hardware specs, causing error after error. Maybe your server is on its last legs and needs repeated emergency maintenance. Maybe you’ve embraced personal devices like smartphones and tablets on your network, but they aren’t compatible with older technology.

Nobody wants the extra expense of unscheduled maintenance or repairs for their network – the cost for these on-site trips or even remote service begins to add up quickly!

How do you fix the problem?

Business technology has matured to a point where a properly configured network should run stably with little to no unscheduled maintenance. If you find yourself consistently having issues or needing unscheduled service calls, it may be time to consider a partial or full network refresh. Your network and your IT infrastructure is like a car: at some point it gets enough miles on it that the cumulative costs to fix it after each breakdown exceed the cost of a new car.

Do you need a network refresh? You can answer that question by assessing your network in detail. To learn more about the process or to schedule an assessment, contact us! We’ll be more than happy to help you get started!