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IT Resources for Enabling Telework During COVID-19

Keeping Your Business Up and Running During the Outbreak Even the most comprehensive disaster recovery planning is unlikely to account for a global health crisis like we face together now. The spread of COVID-19 (Coronavirus) has rocked global markets and impacted daily life and business in a way that was nearly impossible to prepare for. While the health and safety of all people remains top priority, IT leaders are being tasked with facilitating their global workforces to remain as productive as possible—but not all businesses are fully equipped to enable employees to work efficiently remotely. Challenges for ramping up this effort include delays in the supply chain and an inability to quickly scale IT support on demand. While we are taking every precaution to limit the spread of COVID-19 amongst [...]

Meraki vs. Aruba vs. Aerohive—Choosing the Right AP

Connectivity is more than just convenience these days. It’s also about security, visibility, and control. This makes choosing the right AP a critical move for your business. So, as you search for the right network solution for your growing company, consider the following AP comparison of Meraki vs. Aruba vs. Aerohive. Diving into Meraki vs. Aruba vs. Aerohive Meraki Cisco’s Meraki is a simplified, cloud-managed AP solution that can be monitored and controlled through an intuitive, centralized dashboard. This means that you can remotely configure thousands of devices, across myriad locations, without having to deploy on-site staff each time you need to troubleshoot or reconfigure. Without a bottleneck of hardware controllers, Meraki is able to provide a high-density Wi-Fi solution designed to address intense interference environments. With built-in NAC and [...]

The Benefits of Working with Licensed Customs Brokers in Supply Chain

International shipments already come with heavy logistical burdens to shoulder in-house. Even the smallest error or miscalculation on your end could cause your time-sensitive hardware shipment to be detained at the border—not to mention the penalties and added fines you could accrue as a result. This logistical burden isn’t one that many companies are equipped to take on. That’s why organizations prefer to work with licensed customs brokers in supply chain. You need a more accurate and efficient way to ensure the seamless (and properly taxed) shipment of your critical hardware. Here's how a licensed customs broker expedites and helps to navigate the complexities of international shipments. Licensed Customs Brokers in Supply Chain: A Quick Overview A Licensed Customs Broker is licensed by U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) after [...]

What Does a Better 24x7x4 SLA Mean for Your Business?

Wear and tear on your hardware is inevitable. That’s why your IT support’s 24x7x4 SLA is so important to maintain efficient operations. How quickly you deal with the consequent breakdowns that occur can be the difference between minimal delays and extensive downtime. And a great deal of your ability to respond well to these issues is the speed, quality, and dedication of your maintenance support vendor. Consider the Following Scenario: You have a vital piece of hardware that breaks down unexpectedly. All major production across your datacenter halts until you replace or repair that part. If you’re dealing with an OEM that provides 24x7x4 SLAs, they will acknowledge your maintenance issue and will have a Help Desk representative call you back within their 4-hour response window. OEMs are massive enterprises, [...]

How U.S. China Tariffs Are Impacting IT Purchasing

This U.S. China Tariffs IT post was contributed by CentricsIT Logistics Manager, Emily Santa Maria. Emily is a Licensed Customs Broker.  OEM hardware prices are still on the rise due to the new U.S. China tariffs that went into effect this year. As technology departments and budgets feel the strain, it’s important to keep track of IT hardware affected by U.S. China tariffs and what your options are to alleviate the CAPEX strain. Many of the major networking manufacturers have already raised prices. Cisco and Juniper have responded with a 5-10% rise in prices even on products that are not yet affected under the new tariffs. The Effect on Hardware There is a comprehensive list of imports impacted, but IT managers and purchasers should primarily focus on the hardware’s Country [...]

Hardware-as-a-Service for New Location Rollouts

Your business is expanding, which is a good thing. But with expansion comes a hefty caseload of expenditures, logistics, and IT workforce strain. Hardware-as-a-Service eases the tension in new location rollouts. Rolling out new facilities is no easy task, but your infrastructure should never be the limiting factor in your company’s growth momentum. Your technology supports your business and drives your production. When you can’t get a new technology setup quickly (or economically), you run the risk of spending more than producing. And the same is true for remote offices and new retail locations, although they typically require less hardware. More scalable hardware rollout methodologies exist; you’re just not implementing them, yet. Making the Right Decisions When you are preparing a new location—whether it be a data center move, results [...]

The Advantages of Hardware-as-a-Service (Rentals)

Despite the industry’s mad dash towards cloud, your company still needs hardware to continue its IT operations and to meet project goals. If you’re not already, you should be considering the advantages of Hardware-as-a-Service. As much as you want to move towards virtualization, you need to continue to be smart about your hardware sourcing and project management strategies. There are better ways to do it than you’re doing them now—ways that free up OPEX, reduce logistical strain, and better prepare you for future cloud migrations. The Current Method Right now, you’re probably working from the same sourcing models that you started your company with. Which, arguably, worked for a time, but the industry is accelerating, and you must keep up with client demand and technological advancement—all without overstepping the bounds [...]

Our Disruptive Approach to IT Lifecycle Management

The logistics necessary to sustain your enterprise IT lifecycle management processes are considerable. To continue production and keep your infrastructure optimized, you have to choose between one of two difficult options: Muscle through and coordinate IT operations yourself with your already-lean IT team. Outsource your IT operations to a large-scale management corporation. But which option should you choose? Working with What You’ve Got In-house management can be costly, stressful, and inefficient, especially if you already have a lean IT team. If it’s all you can do to keep your current IT infrastructure “well-oiled,” it becomes impractical to think about digital transformations or advances towards more complex cloud initiatives. Simply put, if your (very expensive W2) L5 engineers are stuck doing laptop battery troubleshooting, then they don’t have the time to [...]

Global Third-Party Maintenance – Hardware Isn’t Dead

Hardware’s not dead. But you need a vendor with global support to monitor it. It's time to think global third-party maintenance. Cloud is far from the cure-all that its IT buzzword has been inflated to. The reality is that most organizations are still running on a hybrid IT model—you will be hard-pressed to find either a 100% cloud or 100% on-premise business. Consequently, failing to pay the proper attention to the hardware you have on-premise can be a costly mistake. When you throw all your attention and resources at cloud, you miss out on critical opportunities in-house. The Realities of the Virtual and the Physical Realms Cloud can be more expensive than IT teams anticipate. Optimizing your cloud usage is key, especially when considering the cost and complexities of legacy app [...]

Using HaaS for a Flexible Hardware Product Development Solution

Hybrid IT is a driving force behind modern enterprises today. But it’s not enough to simply maintain the hardware infrastructure you have—you must stay proactive and test new concepts and new products. But that doesn’t mean you need to buy new hardware exclusively for that purpose. You need a flexible hardware product development solution. Here’s how Hardware-as-a-Service can streamline your product development. Buying Outright for a Proof-of-Concept Isn’t the Answer Owning your own infrastructure outright can, at times, be the most economical option for your company’s long-term projects. But this isn’t the case when you need new hardware for proof-of-concept purposes. If you only need the hardware for a few weeks or months for development and testing, you probably don’t want to spend the IT budget on the overhead for [...]