Sunday, May 5, 2013

Keeping Up-to-date is Difficult in Business

Although most businesses would like to keep up-to-date with technology, the costs of doing so are often prohibitive.

There is also the issue of spreading capital expenditure over the period in which the equipment is earning income. That is, instead of having a huge expenditure in one financial period, it's preferable to spread it across several. This provides a more realistic idea of the relationship between income and expenditure in given financial periods.

The arrival of laptops and tablet style computers has had an impact on the desktop PC and provided much greater flexibility for a range of employees who can carry their computers with them and have instant access to all the information they need to work. For example, recently I spent 40 days on a cruise ship travelling from Sydney (Australia) to Japan and back. On several days while I was travelling, I worked on my laptop completing some copy-editing/instructional design tasks for a client.

The portability allowed by laptop and tablet technology has also created some challenges, especially in relation to security and protection of assets; numerous laptops and tablets, iPhones etc are stolen each year. Several sensitive government agencies in the UK and Australia have lost clients contact details and other information they'd far prefer remained confidential.

As would be expected, the Techncrats have produced a range of applications to ensure security isn't compromised. These include firewall and encryption software and also applications that will tell you where your computer is and if someone is using it, what they look like (through webcam). Some laptops even have fingerprint recognition security!

Leasing computers and equipment can be an excellent way to ensure your computer system is up-to-date as most leasing firms refresh their stock peridocally. Software products that are sold on a yearly rental basis are now more common than the one-payment-up-front model. Even Microsoft has adopted this model with it's latest Office software. Others provide cloud-based software.

Either the rental or cloud-based software (an alternative rental model) is suitable for businesses who wish to spread costs more evenly across one or more accounting periods. An added advantage is that software companies with these models frequently update their software to remove bugs or improve it and the users benefit from having the latest versions.

What model of computer hardware and software provision does your employer use? Tell us all about it in the comments section.  


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