Building a hardware fleet that will stand the test of time

Businesses have become more reliant on their IT hardware every year, as their activities go through increasing digital transformation. The move towards hybrid working during the pandemic has further accentuated the importance of computing to economic success. But while small- and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) have been swept along by this trend as much as larger ones, their ability to roll out the necessary hardware upgrades is more financially constrained. Your choices should prioritize devices that are made to last, so the maximum amount of utility can be obtained from the IT equipment purchased over the longest period.

This goes well beyond merely ensuring that IT purchases deliver the most features possible for the money and are obtained from reputable brands. Computer equipment typically has a three- to five-year lifespan, and it will need to deliver the best possible performance during this period. Not only must the hardware provide performance and features to run contemporary applications, but also fit with emerging work patterns. Most important of all, it must be able to resist current and emerging cyber threats, which are constantly evolving and gaining sophistication.

The right PC for the job

The changing nature of work from being primarily on-premises to hybrid models has meant that employees now use a much wider range of devices than before. Gone are the days when a standard desktop configuration could be rolled out across everyone’s desk, with a fixed specification guaranteed for a long period of time so administrators always knew what they were managing. Now, while some employees will still be in the office, many will divide their time between home and workplace, some will be mostly on the road, and some may even operate almost exclusively from where they live. It may even be necessary to onboard new employees remotely.

While you can’t apply a ‘one size fits all’ approach anymore, you can still unify within a family of systems that offer a reliable set of features. Standardizing on devices based on the Intel vPro®, An Intel® Evo™ Design platform ensures that your fleet will share core capabilities including performance, connectivity, management, updating methods and security. For example, Dell’s Latitude 7420 and 7430 notebooks provide baseline performance that can be enhanced for more demanding workloads, alongside cutting-edge features.

The Dell Latitude 7420 and 7430 powered by Intel vPro®, An Intel® Evo™ Design, offer a dependable level of hardware-enhanced security, business-grade performance, efficient remote management, reliability, and stability. The platform also promises consistent system responsiveness, a long-lasting battery and comprehensive state-of-the-art connectivity. Both Dell devices have a 2-in-1 form factor, with touch screen and foldable hinge, delivering flexible use for employees who need to hot desk, work on the move, present and browse information in a tablet configuration.

For organizations that require a blend of desktops and notebooks, Intel vPro®, An Intel® Evo™ Design features are also available in desktop computers. For example, the Dell OptiPlex 7000 series comes in a broad range of formats, from micro and small form factor to all-in-one, meeting space solutions and medium towers. Virtually any computing need from tiny and inconspicuous to power systems for more gruelling workloads can be accommodated. These systems can be managed alongside Intel vPro®, An Intel® Evo™ Design notebooks as part of a common fleet.

This is a fundamentally valuable characteristic, because keeping systems healthy and running smoothly will extend their useful life for as long as possible. All hardware becomes obsolete eventually, but a lot of it may cease to be used before then because the operating system and software hasn’t been updated, has become corrupted by malware or the device itself hasn’t been repaired in the case of a hardware failure. Intel vPro®, An Intel® Evo™ Design facilitates this process by providing a common interface for management. For example, the Dell Command Intel vPro® Out of Band console, through its support for Intel vPro®, An Intel® Evo™ Design, can remotely manage a range of disparate devices. This enables remote onboarding and offboarding of employees who never come to the central office.

Security and sustainability

Security is another central feature of maintaining system uptime. Intel vPro®, An Intel® Evo™ Design provides built-in hardware security out of the box including Intel Hardware Shield. This delivers protection from malware that is baked into the hardware, allowing devices to be easily and cleanly rebooted if compromised. Alongside these built-in features, the system can use AI to detect new threats as they emerge. Alongside remote management, it’s possible to provide constant additional improvement to security as threats are detected on devices, whether on a local network or remotely connected. So an Intel vPro®, An Intel® Evo™ Design always has the latest protection from cyberattacks.

Keeping systems running through a hardware failure is also key. Upgrading an entire system when a single component has broken is a waste of resources and will also work against sustainability targets. Although functional integration has made this harder, even portable systems can be manufactured in a way that enables repair. Purchasing one of these expands the possibility of keeping systems running longer. Dell’s laptops also score highly amongst independent hardware repairers for being constructed in a way that makes fixing them easier than most other brands. Dell’s commitment to sustainability stretches back some years and underpins this facility. Dell has even pioneered the use of augmented reality to facilitate this process with its AR Assistant.

With the increasing importance of IT in delivering value and enabling a distributed workforce to operate efficiently as a team, ensuring hardware is based on the right platform is paramount. Client systems must be kept healthy, usable and fully operational for the longest time possible. Selecting devices based on Intel vPro®, An Intel® Evo™ Design, such as from Dell’s extensive portfolio, can help deliver the best possible service. That way, companies can get the most enduring service out of their IT spend.

Intel technologies may require enabled hardware, software or service activation.

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Your costs and results may vary.

@Intel Corp. Intel, the Intel logo, Intel vPro® and other Intel marks are trademarks of Intel Corporation or its subsidiaries. Other names and brands may be claimed as the property of others.

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