The Real Cost of Technology - When was the last time you serviced your AV system?

Are you feeling the real cost of technology?

Many organisations don’t consider the maintenance of their AV technology after initial purchase. Instead, they ignore it and end up paying more for it over its life. So, what is the real cost of technology?  

I recently bought a new car and was amazed at the number of dealers that would package in servicing and maintenance as part of the deal.

“It’s essential for the future value of your investment and to ensure that it runs and operates as you require it to” one dealer explained to me.

If it’s so important to consider the service and maintenance of a $50,000 car, why shouldn’t it be the same for the $50,000 investment in boardroom technology in my office?

One thing that I feel a lot of people overlook when investing in AV technology is the implications of the technology after day one. Has there been any consideration of routine check-ups or maintenance activities? Are there any considerations for an upgrade path to accommodate changes in technology? Will the system continue to work as the user requirements change? Has the appropriate user training been continued after installation?

In the long term, regular maintenance and training of your AV technology will increase productivity and help your organisation save time, money and effort. Similar to getting your car serviced, regular maintenance of your AV systems extends the life of your technology and helps you adapt to the changing needs of your organisation. Left unchecked, small minor problems can lead to major repairs and higher costs down the road.  Or worse still, you have an AV system that doesn’t get used.

This doesn’t only apply to AV technology. It’s been estimated that up to 80% of the cost of technology over its lifetime occurs after the initial capital investment. These expenses are usually made up of a number of factors, but a majority of these expenses can be attributed to the original design not considering the client’s future business requirements.

Therefore, when investing in technology, it’s important that the designer takes the time to understand your organisation and how you intend to use the system.  A good designer should work closely with you to design a system that is compatible with your organisation’s operations.  They should also select technology based on your user requirements and budget, without any supplier bias.

An example of a simple solution would be to implement a network based asset management system that could be used to monitor your AV systems and provide help desk function, remote diagnostics and manage routine maintenance activities. An asset management system in most scenarios would be less than 2% of the overall capital budget and can save up to 50% of technical support costs over the life of the system.

At CHW Consulting, we work closely with our clients to understand their requirements and consider the real cost of technology across the whole life of the technology, ensuring your system’s reliability and your peace of mind. Next time you purchase new AV technology, remember: prevention is better than the cure. Technology that is well maintained will have fewer issues and last longer. The reduction in downtime means higher productivity and guarantees a better return on your initial investment.

Manoje Indraharan has more than 10 years of experience as a design Engineer and Consultant, and has been involved in successfully delivering audio visual, communications and IT services on variety if different projects.