Three Ways a Rack Refresh can Pour Thousands of Dollars Back into your IT Budget

By November 1, 2021 Blog, Uncategorized
Server Connections

#1 Eliminating redundant equipment reduces maintenance and vendor costs
#2 Streamlining the IT room frees up valuable IT time
#3 “Checking the tech” and optimizing the environment can prevent costly system failures

 

What’s an IT Closet? How about a rack?

It goes by a lot of names…IT closet…server room…data center. What you call it depends on how much space is being used (closets = small, rooms = big, data centers = huge) and what kind of equipment you have (servers, switches, routers, SIEM devices, etc.)

The hardware in an IT room sits on a “rack”, or dedicated shelf space. That hardware is typically responsible for your internet connection, file storage, email, network security, and much more.

Although “the rack” is vitally important, a lot of companies don’t practice routine upkeep. What you’re left with is…an absolute mess.

Messy Server Room

Every year your IT team should perform a review and decide if a “rack refresh” is necessary. That involves untangling cables, cataloging the systems, and organizing it all in a way that makes sense.

We love taking on rack refresh projects because the ROI (Return on Investment) for our clients is so significant. Here are three ways that a rack refresh can pump dollars back into your IT budget.

#1 Eliminating redundant equipment reduces maintenance and vendor costs

In some cases, one piece of hardware can do the work of two. A rack refresh can help you zero in on redundancy and consolidate your technology. Less equipment means less maintenance, which can add up to massive savings.

Eliminating old telecom and network gear also saves electricity. The monthly cost may seem minimal but it adds up over time. Just one computer with a basic 100w power supply costs $105 annually.

The savings related to a rack refresh are even more dramatic. Here’s a scenario to illustrate that point…

A non-profit in Boston asked a volunteer to install a new firewall back in 2016. The old SonicWall firewall was moved to an open spot in the rack. Days later, someone turned on the old firewall, assuming that it should be on. Because it was on, the old SonicWall was counted as active equipment and the company paid $1100 to renew the warranty and security subscription.

A couple of years later, they called us to ask about our services. During our walk-through of their space, we discussed the importance of an organized IT room. They agreed and asked us to lead that project.

During the rack refresh, our technician noticed that the old firewall was just sitting there collecting dust. If it wasn’t brought to their attention, they would have wasted another $1100 at renewal time.

#2 Streamlining the IT room frees up valuable IT time

It’s faster to work in a well-maintained IT room. In fact, a well-maintained space can save hours of IT time over the course of a year. Imagine the revenue-generating projects you could take on with that extra time.

But that’s under normal circumstances. What about in an emergency? Picture this…

In the wee hours of the morning, your landlord calls your cellphone. When you pick up, she says there’s a flood in your office building. Because the IT room is stuffed with junk and the equipment is tangled, crucial minutes are lost. Your server is damaged beyond repair. Insurance claims and lawsuits might cover some of the losses, but it’s the downtime that ultimately cripples your business.

#3 “Checking the tech” and optimizing the environment can prevent costly system failures

Computer technology rarely dies out-of-the-blue. By reviewing system logs, an IT professional can see many kinds of warning signs before an actual failure occurs. But sometimes, the only way to know there’s a problem is to physically inspect the device.

A rack refresh is a golden opportunity to review the conditions on the ground. Did you know that environmental factors like heat, moisture, and dust can kill electronics? Adding a fan and dehumidifier could potentially extend the life of your technology by months or even years.

Summary

Your IT room holds some of your company’s most valuable assets. Protect it and you’ll pour money back into your IT budget. If it has been years since your last rack refresh (or if you’ve never thought about it before now), we’d be happy to help! Contact us today for more information and we’ll get you on our schedule.

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