by Neroli Baird Neroli Baird No Comments

The Case for a Three-Year Workstation Refresh Cycle

This article first appeared on ThinkFWD

It’s not about hardware – it’s about achieving your peak performance

Competitive businesses stay that way, partly by affording themselves a consistent technology advantage. But, the question is: what’s the most cost-effective way to sustain that advantage?

Workstation refresh cycle of up to three years can easily pay for itself in performance gains, improved reliability, and new levels of flexibility. Three years is the expected useful life of a typical workstation, especially in a growing business environment that consistently places new and more complex demands on its IT resources.

Here are five sensible reasons for instituting a three-year refresh cycle with Lenovo ThinkStation®workstations.

1. A workstation refresh can pay for itself

A new workstation, like a Lenovo ThinkStation P-Series can deliver up to 73% greater performance over a comparable three-year-old device.1 Beyond performance, the added reliability of an entry-level Intel®Xeon® processor-based workstation can deliver significant savings in the form of reduced downtime and fewer costly onsite repairs. Together, improved performance and reliability add up to an investment worth making.

2. A refresh provides the flexibility to fine-tune capabilities.

As businesses evolve, so do their workstation requirements: the entry-level model that handled tasks with ease three years ago might be lagging under vastly increased workloads and more complex demands. A scheduled refresh cycle enables businesses to anticipate future needs – not react after systems are already overstressed.

3. A refresh keeps star producers at peak productivity

If businesses invest in standout engineering or design talent, it makes sense to provide those high-value users with workstations that enable them to perform at full potential. And it reduces employee frustration with aging workstations that may be holding them back.

4. A refresh is preferable to half-measures that may not deliver.

It might be tempting to defer a workstation refresh in favor of additional memory, an upgraded graphics card or other improvements to existing systems. But, doing so deprives users of important performance gains made possible by the latest Intel Xeon processors

5. In the end, it’s all about the ROI

Ultimately, the case for adopting a three-year refresh cycle, like any other acquisition, comes down to one determination: can it deliver a LENOVO THINKSTATION® P SERIES compelling return on investment?

For example, a new workstation that can triple performance might speed products to market sooner than the competition, providing an important first-mover advantage. Or, a new workstation that reduces the need for physical prototypes by half could make a significant impact on the speed and cost of the product design cycle.

Consider this: A Lenovo ThinkStation workstations render CAD and handle complex 3D designs almost twice as fast as comparable 3 year old systems.2

That means CAD professionals can nearly double their productivity, accruing more billable hours in half the time it used to take for projects to render. These are just few possible scenarios that can come from refreshing your engineering resources with new Lenovo workstations on a sensible three-year cycle.

Businesses that live or die on the speed and capacity of their technology tools are already preserving their advantage profitably with a prudent workstation refresh cycle; shouldn’t you keep up, too?

1. According to internal testing using SPECwpc benchmark. Comparison between D30 (2x Intel Xeon E5-2687W Graphics: NVIDIA Quadro Q6000) and P900 (2x Intel Xeon E5- 2687Wv3 Graphics: NVIDIA Quadro K6000).

2 According to internal testing using SPECwpc benchmark. Comparison between C30 (2x Intel Xeon E5-2690 Graphics: NVIDIA Quadro Q5000) and P700 (2x Intel Xeon E5-2690v3 Graphics: NVIDIA Quadro K5200).

by tara tara No Comments

Securing Your BYOD Policy

Securing Your BYOD Policy

Work practices have undergone a revolution in the digital age. Networked devices and more mobility have blurred the line between work and home as vast numbers of people perform their jobs across multiple platforms, often far from the office.

An accompanying phenomenon is the bring your own device (BYOD) policy which allows employees to use their own laptops and smartphones in the office or, alternatively, to use those devices to work from home.

BYOD has its pros and cons, and organisations that already have a policy in place or are contemplating implementing one need to tick some boxes to make sure it runs as smoothly and securely as possible.

The Good

BYOD has obvious advantages for staff who like the convenience and familiarity of working on their own devices. It could also lead to productivity gains, as users have an affinity for their own personal devices and how they use them.

Personal laptops, tablets and smartphones are usually more cutting edge, given that companies often don’t update their desktops for years on end. BYOD also allows staff to carry only one or two devices around with them, rather than different ones for work and personal use.

BYOD policies can save organisations money, as they don’t have to spend as much on their IT hardware while allowing workers increased mobility.

The Bad

Having said that, BYOD practices are not free from security concerns. More and more mobile devices provide greater scope for ways to breach a company’s IT infrastructure.

Some employees may not be as stringent as they should be about the information they bring home that could be highly sensitive or confidential. Once they take it out of the office, there’s nothing stopping them from sharing it across devices, networks, emails or even showing it to their family and friends.

Disgruntled employees about to walk out the door pose an even bigger threat. If they are leaving to work for a competitor, BYOD makes it easier for them to take intellectual property with them. Alternatively, if an employee uses a smartphone to access the company network then loses it or it’s stolen, an unauthorised person could retrieve unsecured data on the device. Staff can also sell their devices or give them away and forget to wipe company data beforehand.

And the Necessary

A good BYOD policy should contain two critical components: an application or software program for managing the devices connected to your organisation’s networks, and a written agreement that clearly states the responsibilities of employers and staff.

For example, IT departments wishing to monitor the use of personal devices must ensure that they only monitor activities that access company information.

Software developers and device manufacturers are constantly releasing security patches and updates for threats such as viruses and malware. BYOD policies should have the necessary processes in place to automatically apply those patches across all the agreed BYOD devices.

Additionally, organisations can simplify the whole process by limiting the number or make of devices allowed in their BYOD programs and the systems they have to support. Supporting a broad range of devices could become an administrative nightmare.

The IT department should also have permission to remotely wipe the device if it’s lost, the employee leaves or if it detects a data breach, virus or any other threat to its infrastructure.

BYOD should satisfy employees and management alike, as long as there’s a clear understanding of everyone’s responsibilities. Before settling on the best BYOD policy for your organisation, it’s worth getting input from HR, IT, finance, legal and anyone else who has a stake in the matter.