Establishing a plan to responsibly retire your old IT assets is important from a compliance, environment and cost perspective. However, there are some key considerations that need to be addressed. How do you choose your provider? What is the best way to prepare for pickup? How will you ensure the data on your hardware is properly disposed of?
Let’s explore six best practices to establish an IT Asset Disposition (ITAD) strategy that will offer you peace of mind while providing the most value for your dollar.
1. Shop for a competitive ITAD provider
Not all ITAD providers are alike. While rates may not vary significantly, the value each provider offers ranges greatly. A simple paradigm for life applies here. You get what you pay for, so be wary of companies offering deep discounts. Those offering markedly lower prices may be cutting corners in key areas, such as using uncertified recyclers or transportation companies, which ultimately creates massive risks for you. Others may have hidden fees. Read more on transparency and standard practices you should expect from your ITAD provider.
2. Package retired assets with care
Unfortunately, it’s very common for IT assets to get damaged during the packing process. When employees throw their hardware into boxes, devices break, screens shatter and surfaces scratch. Do not haphazardly throw items in at the last minute. Instead, set them aside for your next pickup. If a remarket or resell is part of your ITAD strategy, you will want to make sure you take great care with these items.
3. Consider the cost of disposition when purchasing new assets
In an effort to maximize your spend, find a full-service solution provider offering a utility model that lets you pay for asset disposition upfront. This will help save money in the long run and assuage worries about making arrangements down the road.
4. Make sure your ITAD provider has guidelines for safely transporting items
Despite being out of sight, your IT assets should never be out of mind. Conduct your due diligence in securing a provider that has processes in place for getting your assets safely to the disposition site. For example, make sure they don’t stack laptops and other items too high in a truck, and safely protect monitors from scratching or breaking while being transported. You also want to make sure your ITAD provider uses transportation partners with vehicles that are discreet — not heavily branded. Vehicles with signage is read as “valuable IT assets inside” to others.
5. Take advantage of point-to-point secure transportation to prevent data leakage
If you don’t have data-bearing assets destroyed on site, you will want to ensure the secure transportation of assets from the moment they leave your facility to their destruction. You may not save money upfront here, but you will be saving your organization time, headaches and potential loss of reputation by avoiding mishaps or accidental data leaks during transport.
6. Demand that assets get remarketed in a timely manner
If your assets are being resold, be vigilant in making sure they are remarketed quickly. Akin to produce, IT assets also have a shelf life. If they end up sitting in a warehouse for a long period, they will depreciate in value. Ask your ITAD provider to police this and provide you with regular reports.
At the end of the day, your choice in ITAD provider can make or break your ROI. By conducting thorough research on prospective providers, you can save your company from a PR nightmare while fulfilling your social duty to environmental responsibility. If your ITAD experience is less than satisfactory, it’s time to revisit item number one and start comparison shopping for a new provider, to find a partner who will adhere to your company’s needs and policies.
Have you found another ITAD method of saving money, time or headaches? Let us know in the comments section. We’d love to hear from you!