The Down Low on TCO (Total Cost of Ownership), Part 2


Total Cost of Ownership
When purchasing a scanner or large piece of hardware, the true cost of ownership takes into account successful performance.

In last week’s blog, we set forth the premise that not all scanners are created equal. There is much more to consider at purchase than the quoted price. After more than three decades of selling and manufacturing digital and analog imaging systems, The Crowley Company has developed a three-point system for clients to discover the true cost of hardware ownership: accuracy, productivity and the true total cost.

We discussed accuracy – how well the scanner or equipment performs to the detail needed – and the fact that for maximum productivity, speed doesn’t always equal efficiency. In this blogpost, we’ll further the conversation by talking about other cost variables that should be considered before purchasing an imaging system.

Total Cost of Ownership

As with many purchases, the cost of ownership goes well beyond the initial investment. How many consumable parts are there? What are their lifetime expectations? Can the unit be cleaned, maintained and repaired in-house or does it need to be sent back to the manufacturer? What is the standard downtime for each maintenance function and how frequently must they be performed? Does the reseller offer technical support? Follow-up care? A maintenance program? Is the unit fragile or robust? How many years can you expect to operate the scanner? The list goes on.

Downtime is measured in both lost income and lost overall productivity. Inevitably, when all is added together, a scanner – or any major purchase – will become more expensive than its purchase price. Consider the purchase of a car or a house; in order to keep them in peak condition, it’s expected that there is an ongoing investment (gas, repairs, upgrades, etc.). How much more expensive, however, is in the control of the consumer.

Unfortunately, we’ve seen too many prospects over the years purchase a lower-cost system only to return in a year or two having to make the larger investment. In more cases than not, the old adage applies: you get what you pay for. With the help of a knowledgeable vendor partner, many of these potential expenses can be identified and considered in advance. At that point, the purchase becomes academic because all of the factors have been considered.

Ask Away

All of these considerations – and more – combine to give a buyer the total cost of ownership. Prospective buyers should never feel intimidated to ask questions before purchase, during installation and as an owner. Ask for an in-house demonstration. Use your own media in the demonstration. Ask for references.

Companies of value want to be a long-time partner; this means developing a relationship over the lifespan of each piece of equipment. A good partner recognizes that each scanner purchase is a significant investment for any organization and should ensure that the potential purchase fits the intended use now and down the road and, most importantly, that the total cost of ownership fits the budget.

If you have any questions about the True Cost of a Scanner, please contact the Crowley Company by calling (240) 215-0224. General inquiries can be emailed to [email protected]. You can also follow The Crowley Company on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, LinkedIn, Pinterest, and YouTube.

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