When They Say “Lifecycle Services” What Do They Really Mean?

by Admin October 16, 2015

Information Technology (IT) Lifecycle Services is one of the few descriptors that really are what they sound like they are!

Everything can be said to have a lifecycle.  Products get designed, developed, prototyped, approved, manufactured, introduced to market, marketed, sold, serviced, retired, and replaced. Information is conceptualized, developed, documented, shared, revised, archived, and perhaps eventually destroyed. 

IT Lifecycles

IT facilities and devices each have their own lifecycle as well.  ASI Services provides customers with expert support at each of these stages and encourages customers to think about each service in the context of the entire lifecycle.

Planning - This lifecycle actually begins before the actual unit is obtained.  A need is identified.  Specifics about the need and what will fulfill it are defined.  Research is performed to identify the ideal products and services required to make that fulfillment happen.  Specific devices and software are purchased.  All of these are part of the ASI solution lifecycle.

Deployment - Most people recognize the IT service lifecycle as beginning here, where the devices and software are integrated, configured, tested, and prepared for delivery.  Then they are delivered, installed, integrated into the corporate network, given access to required resources.  Many ASI customers prefer not to have their own resources trained to perform what will be a one-time installation of new equipment or software and have experienced ASI specialists do it instead.

User Training - Users are trained and given instruction as to where to obtain support when required.

Management - The installed units are then monitored to assure constant and consistent function.  In many cases the devices and software are managed to assure optimal function.  Many customers turn to ASI specifically for management services so they can optimize use of their own resources on projects pertinent to their specific business.

End-of-Life - Given the rapid advancement that is constant in IT, after a relatively short time each unit and each version of software is superseded by a new, superior version.  Eventually it becomes time to retire and replace many units and much of the software.  The software may be updated regularly using automatic techniques to reduce the workload on human operators or support personnel.  When hardware must be replaced, someone must disconnect and remove the existing equipment and begin the lifecycle anew with new equipment.  ASI’s various professional services teams each have significant expertise in upgrading and migrating customer platforms to the latest state-of-the-art.

Disposal - The lifecycle, however, does not end until the equipment is properly disposed of in an ecologically sound manner, and the software and any resulting data is safely transitioned off of any storage devices that are being discarded.  ASI has helped many customers avoid significant legal penalties that can come as the result of improper disposal of expired computer equipment.

That’s A Lot of Work

We think of computers as “set-and-forget” devices that require little if any maintenance.  The reality is that there are a number of services which must be performed during the various phases of this lifecycle, and the strategy employed to perform these services becomes most cost-effective and functionally efficient when the process to support the entire lifecycle is thought-out, planned, and defined in advance.

Optimal management of the IT Lifecycle reduces costs and extracts the highest possible value from each investment in information infrastructure.  Discuss the lifecycle of your upcoming investments with your ASI Advisor today.

 

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