Whether your company has a few dozen mobile devices or a few hundred, one thing remains the same: those devices will eventually need to be replaced.
Do you have a plan for replacing them?
It’s important to hold your mobile devices to the same standard as other IT assets when disposing of them. They contain sensitive company and employee information, which means you need to perform a factory reset – or otherwise purge that data – or risk a pretty big vulnerability.
It’s the responsibility of your company’s mobile device asset manager to make sure those devices are clean when they leave your property.
If you see someone using a mobile device at your workplace, it most likely came from Apple.
iPhones and iPads account for nearly all of the smartphones and tablets used in the corporate world.
To make managing all of these devices easier, Apple created its Device Enrollment Program (DEP), designed to help qualifying businesses, K-12 schools, colleges and universities configure and deploy devices running on iOS and OS X.
The notion of being “disowned” isn’t a pleasant one, but the term takes on a different meaning when we talk about mobile devices.
Mobile devices are increasingly becoming part of the workspace thanks to the “bring your own device” movement, and companies have begun to adjust to this phenomenon by setting up what are known as mobile device management (MDM) programs.
An MDM program can help an organization – whether it’s a business, a school system or a government agency – integrate and keep track of its mobile devices, ensuring its technology is secure and functional as possible.
These terms are likely part of your lexicon if you’re in charge of technology where you work. If not, they will be soon.
MDM is “mobile device management,” while BYOD stands for “bring your own device,” and the two concepts are intertwined.
BYOD means what it sounds like. A company lets employees work using their own mobile devices, typically laptops, tablets or smartphones.
MDM is the practice of administering those devices, or company-owned mobile devices. It lets a company or organization secure, monitor, integrate and manage its mobile devices. The idea is to make sure that devices are as secure and functional as possible, while also protecting your network.
It’s also important to think about the value of your used mobile devices, and the importance of finding a re-seller who’s equipped to manage them when your organization wants to sell its assets.
Imagine having to spend a quarter of a billion dollars to upgrade your technology.
The Australian Bureau of Statistics doesn’t have to imagine. They’re doing it.
According to Computerworld, the ABS will spend $250 million over the next five years to replace its aging IT systems, some of which are 30 years old.
Chances are the technology at your workplace doesn’t go back to the 1980s. And it’s probably a good bet you’re not spending $50 million a year to make computer upgrades.
But the point is that you’re spending money when you replace your IT assets.
You could simply recycle your old equipment, but IT asset recovery and remarketing companies like CWI can go a few steps further, finding a way to reuse your technology in a responsible way while also giving you the best value for your old devices.
If you read about Native American people who lived on the plains, you come across the same concept over and over:
“They wasted no part of the buffalo.”
Well, that’s sort of how you should think of folks who work in the field of IT asset management: they want to be sure no part of your computer goes to waste.
But that’s getting ahead of ourselves. First we need to answer two questions: “What is IT asset management?” and “If it involves getting use out of old computers, how is it any different from computer recycling?”
As we mentioned in a previous blog post that was published this past July, recent studies have shown that increasing numbers of companies are choosing not to remarket their retired computers and IT equipment, but to dispose of them instead.
Their reasoning? According to IT department heads, it comes down to a lack of confidence in the data security of most ITAD (IT Asset Disposition) companies.
Naturally, we want our IT remarketing clients — past, present and future — to have complete confidence in our data erasure standards. To that end, we’d like to share with you a case study of our own organization’s data security that was compiled by WhiteCanyon Software.
WhiteCanyon is a leading provider of security software; we partnered with the firm while searching for a solution to securely and permanently erase data from clients’ hard drives as efficiently and effectively as possible.
To learn more about how we’ve significantly streamlined our data erasure efforts, click here or on the image above to download the WhiteCanyon case study. (PDF)
Actually, It Depends…
When to replace your used computers is a difficult question and there is no real right answer. Depending on what kind of computer it is, what it’s used for, and who you ask, you’ll most definitely get a different opinion.
As a recent Computerworld article explored, some computers are replaced every eighteen months, some every five. Most every three to four years. Shorter for laptops than desktops, due to their travel and durability issues. But as new software continues to gobble up and require more processing power, and higher computing power becomes more and more affordable, the lure and logic of trading in all your used computers becomes more pressing.