What Is Technology Life Cycle Management?

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Your company’s IT solutions are subject to the technology life cycle, which is the cycle of a technological innovation or product from inception through production, distribution, peak usefulness, decline, and obsolescence. Ideally, your IT strategy should plan for technological upgrades throughout your company operations and departments to plan for the eventual degradation of older technology.

 

How Does a Company Manage the Technology Life Cycle?

Your IT provider should incorporate technology life cycle management into your IT strategy. By knowing where your current technology is within the four phases of the technology life cycle (R&D, ascent, maturity, or decline), your IT service provider can help your business plan to replace aging technology with new solutions.

The technology life cycle affects not just hardware, but also software, data management systems, network cabling, and other aspects of your business. As demands on your systems increase due to your business growth, your needs to update your computers, network, cloud solutions, server storage, and data backup solutions will also increase.

Whether you have an in-house IT department, external managed IT services, or an IT consultation service, your IT provider can use their knowledge of the technology life cycle to predict when you need system and device upgrades. By planning for these upgrades and other essential updates, you can work downtime and cost into your budget well ahead of time.

The technology life cycle management process is the act of planning for and implementing business technology upgrades to keep your technology solutions up to date. Managing your technology life cycle helps you stay ahead of your competitors and the natural life cycle of your devices, software, and other digital solutions.

 

The 4 Phases of the Technology Life Cycle

The technology life cycle contains four phases that each describe a segment of a technological innovation’s path from development through obsolescence. These include the research and development phase, the ascent phase, the maturity phase, and the decline phase.

 

Research and Development Phase

Also referred to as the “bleeding edge” of the technology life cycle, the R&D phase of a technological innovation requires the producer to spend for researching a problem and prospective solutions to develop a new technology. The producer may never see returns on these expenses.

 

Ascent Phase

When a producer introduces their new product to market and begins earning returns on its R&D and production costs, they are in the ascent phase. A producer needs to capture as much market share as they can quickly before substitutes and competitors enter the market.

 

Maturity Phase

In the maturity phase, the market has accepted the value of the innovation and competitors and similar products are beginning to emerge. Producers should consider capitalizing on strategic partnerships with companies in complementary markets or along different parts of the production chain.

 

Decline Phase

As competitors introduce more affordable imitations and substitutes to the market, the innovator’s product sales and relevance enter the decline phase.

 

Why Technology Life Cycle Management Is Important

Because the technology you use in your business is subject to the technology life cycle, managing your upgrades and planning room in your budget to purchase new equipment and devices is essential. Based on predictive modeling, your IT professionals can help you determine the best time to replace computer workstations, PoS systems, routers, printers, and industrial technologies.

Staying on the cutting edge of technology in your industry can help you take the best advantage of your opportunities for growth over your competitors who aren’t upgrading their technology frequently enough.

 

The Risks of Not Managing Your Technology Life Cycle

Failing to follow technology life cycle management best practices can put your business operations at risk of a data breach. Even if you don’t suffer a direct attack on your data, old technology can reduce productivity and sales with slow page loading times, network interruptions, failed transaction verifications, and lost business opportunities.

Slow or outdated technology can affect your business operations negatively in many ways, including:

  • Making it difficult for customers to contact you or purchase products or services online
  • Interrupting communications between your company and vendors
  • Broken network connections and downtime
  • Failing to filter spam emails out of company communications
  • Taking a long time to load business proposals, contracts, or other important documents
  • Business inefficiency as employees wait for workstations to boot or update

 

How to Implement a Technology Life Cycle Management Strategy

So how do you develop and invest in a management strategy for the technology life cycle? The entire technology life cycle management process features six steps to help you develop a sound IT strategy that includes plans for updating your technology appropriately.

1. Assessment and Identification. Take a technology inventory of all devices, software, network, and cloud solutions. Determine where each is its life cycle. Plan to upgrade or add more devices based on expected growth and future demand.

2. Acquisition. If you found certain devices that require immediate updating during your assessment and identification phase, replace them with current technologies.

3. Implementation and Management. Add your new technologies into your operational standards and train employees on how to use their new tools.

4. Support. From managed IT services to 24/7 phone support, your technology needs regular maintenance to get the most out of your tools.

5. Refresh. Budget future upgrades into your IT strategy so you don’t have to worry about sudden expenses for emergency technological replacements.

6. Asset Disposal. When you retire a device, you need to plan for appropriate disposal. Improper disposal can lead to hefty regulatory fines.

 

Contact Succurri for All of Your Business Tech Needs

At Succurri, we strive to offer complete IT solutions for our customers in the greater Seattle area. Our IT support services include developing a business and technology integration roadmap to help business owners utilize technology effectively in meeting their business goals. We proudly serve multiple industries, including healthcare, engineering, architecture, finance, and local municipalities.

We’re family-owned and -operated. Schedule a call today at Succurri in Everett, WA to plan management services for your business technology life cycle.

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Sarah W
Sarah W.

Phoenix Consultant

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