In the increasingly tough economic climate, enterprise-sized businesses are looking to alternate approaches to not only save money in the short-term but strategies that will deliver better returns for the business as a whole. Jan Beukes, CEO, Storex, a specialist in multi-vendor infrastructure lifecycle extension management, says that one of these approaches is the increasing adoption of Third-Party Maintenance (TPM).
While TPM is a globally accepted approach, locally the awareness and understanding is still lacking. It is important to understand that re-evaluating maintenance and re-thinking secondary hardware go hand in hand. TPM provides an opportunity to keep equipment and dictate the refresh cycle as opposed to being constrained by an OEM end-of-life and end-of-support dates.
“TPM is one of the preferred methods based on its cost-savings potential as well as umbrella maintenance coverage it provides to clients. There is no need for multiple support contracts when you can simply engage with one TPM provider and realise several benefits,” says Beukes.
But he says that it goes way beyond simple convenience, waning capex growth and decreasing reliance on owning physical products will see more businesses looking to TPM as a preferred option.
According to Gartner, hardware maintenance is increasingly being considered as a ‘nonstrategic IT’ spending and procurement, with the result being that IT professionals are seeking low-cost alternatives to expensive equipment manufacturer contracts and pricing.
Even though maintenance is sometimes considered a “nonstrategic” expense, that does not prevent it from becoming an innovative way to maximise the value of an investment.
“By adopting a TPM support program, clients can realise savings above 50 per cent on equipment manufacturer maintenance cost. This immediately empowers the business as it benefits from budget savings and can utilise these for more important areas of growth for the business,” says Beukes.
The flexibility and agility of TPM, according to Beukes, is critical. “TPM brings with it an invaluable advantage in the flexibility and customised support it offers. Not only this, but clients are given individualised attention and can select a model that is customised according to their specific needs.”
Beukes says that clients will also receive responses much faster and issues can be solved quicker: “This drastically improves productivity due to the faster problem resolution. With a TPM strategy, clients can also enjoy the flexibility of a short-term contract and the ability to terminate a contract without any penalty.”
Gartner says that IT procurement professionals are increasingly evaluating pre-owned/post-warranty equipment resellers to reduce costs and extend the functional life of IT assets. This trend, along with virtualisation, has led to a monumental shift in IT thinking and according to Beukes, TPM is one of the key players in a new way forward.