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Hardware Provisioning – What sort of device is right for my business?

Article By Benjamin Pavlovski | | Technology Consulting

Deciding what hardware to provision for your office can seem a daunting process, long gone are the days when you could simply just buy workstations, initially configure them, and then roll them out to your office. Now with Remote Work on the rise and more offices moving to a Cloud or Hybrid Cloud solution for their work, it begs the question of what devices should businesses be rolling out.

Right off the bat, if your employees are frequently on the move and need to be able to continue working while travelling/working outside of the office then a laptop makes sense. The rabbit hole can go on and on when it comes to the different form factors and specific purposes of all the ‘laptops’. For the purposes of this write-up, we will consider all these different variations to fall under the umbrella term ‘laptop’.

LaptopThin ClientDesktop
DescriptionSmall and mobile personal computing deviceDevice with reduced hardware and software footprint, intended to connect to a remote desktopTraditional desktop form factor PC usually resting on a desk
Benefits• Lightweight allows for easy carry

• Can be nearly as fast/potent as desktops, if not more
• Low post setup maintenance needed

• High security level given data is on a Remote Server and write filter protects device
• Generally the cheapest out of the three

• Easily repaired and maintained, parts can be interchanged/upgraded at will
Drawbacks• Pricier compared to desktops and thin clients

• Immediate physical access to the device may not be available
• Not as cheap as they used to be compared to desktops

• Is designed for remote access, can barely run other programs
• Not very portable

• Users

• Physical space might be a consideration

For on premises office workers, you need to consider whether you are currently or may be looking towards a virtual desktop solution or whether you primarily work off a cloud program. If you have a Remote Desktop, either cloud or on premises, then a Thin Client can be fantastic choice to take advantage of that server.

On the other hand, if you’re running a dedicated program that must be installed on a computer and cloud is not something you are utilising or are looking to adopt. Then a traditional desktop workstation is, and will always be, a reliable pick. More likely than not your business will be a mixture of these different sorts of devices. The key will be finding the balance that works for you as the right proportions will be unique for every business.