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Blockbuster or Netflix? The Future of the Technology Subscription Model

When did you last set foot inside a Blockbuster’s? Can’t remember? Not really surprising. After all, Blockbuster just couldn’t keep up with the changing way we consume media. Why bother trekking down to Blockbuster when you could spend a tiny monthly fee on Netflix and get all the movies and TV you want? It’s easier, faster, and less expensive. Netflix provides so much more than Blockbuster while saving on the cost of storefronts, distribution, and HR. It’s simple. Why WOULDN’T you choose Netflix over Blockbuster?

IT is going the same direction. The future of technology is the subscription model.

Take a look at Microsoft. What business doesn’t rely on MS Office to get work done? Most companies use Outlook, Word, and Excel every day. It used to be that you’d have to buy a physical license for MS Office, install it on every workstation or on your server, and worry about patching it every time an update came out.

Microsoft saw the direction of the future and decided to embrace it. That’s why they came out with Office 365. Now you can get everything you want from an Office suite plus all the power of an Exchange server, without the bloat and expense of licensing or maintaining a server. Instead, you pay a monthly fee for the exact number of users you want access for, and simply go online to use all your applications: email, calendars, contacts, Word, Excel… it’s all there.

Ultimately, smaller companies that could never have afforded to outright purchase and maintain an Exchange server or worry about getting the newest version of Office are now able to compete using the best Microsoft systems out there. And they save money doing it.

Other IT services are already being offered on subscription bases too. Virus protection is easily applied with a monthly service plan, as is spam protection. Lots of applications are now being offered in the cloud that you can sign up for, only for as long as you need them.

Right now, One Source Imaging Solutions is already providing hardware on a subscription basis for our clients: Instead of spending a lot of money upfront on computers and servers that require regular maintenance and management, our clients are able to simply pay a monthly fee for their needed hardware from us. They get the exact equipment they need, we handle all the licensing, warranties, and servicing, and we replace the equipment before it becomes obsolete.

There are lots of benefits to converting to a subscription model for IT:

  • Turn capital expenses into operational expenses: When you receive IT services or equipment on a subscription basis, you convert that expense into predictable operating expenses that are easy to budget for every month. Plus, you can claim those expenses on your taxes to receive some nice rewards.
  • Avoid collecting expensive and clunky hardware: Think of that computer you’re working on right now. How useful is it going to be in two years’ time? It will slow down and start dragging down productivity. If you own it outright, you’re just going to have to put in the backroom to gather dust, or otherwise recycle it. But if you’re on a monthly subscription for hardware from your IT company, they’ll replace it at no extra cost before it goes obsolete.
  • Easy scalability: Imagine getting HBO online without having to buy the entire cable package. That’s the great thing about subscription model technology. You scale your subscription to your EXACT needs: It’s a pick-what-you-want model with virtual desktops, customizable number of users, and more. You pay only for what you need without any bloat, and you can change your service as you grow.

Some CEOs worry about losing control of their assets by converting to the subscription model, but there’s no need to fear it. You already rely on many services under this model: Electricity, Internet service, fire protection… these services would cripple you if they weren’t there now. But you don’t think about them being out of your control – you know you can rely on your providers to keep you operational.

That’s the key to the future of technology: Finding the right provider you can trust.

Research the IT companies around you and find out who is getting ahead of the curve with their subscription models. Are they offering hardware and software as a service? Do they help you leverage the right cloud technology for your needs? Will they give you the guidance you need to use the right IT at the right price for the right reasons?

If you partner with someone who has your best interests in mind, you’ll be able to reduce your out-of-pocket expenses, improve cash flow, and start to compete with companies that bring a larger IT budget to bear. It can be tough to compete on a technology level when large companies can outright purchase the best technology – Now you can level the playing field without breaking the budget.

As technology continues to evolve, the traditional relationship between IT and the workplace will evolve along with it. Are you prepared to adapt how you do business to the new capabilities offered by the future of technology? One Source Imaging Solutions can help you find out. Call us at (800) 875--8843 to discuss how your business can be ready to embrace the Future of Technology.