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IT leaders overlook total cost of ownership when selecting software

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When it comes to purchasing software, total cost of ownership (TCO) is not something most decision-makers think about, security firm ESET claims.

After surveying 150 IT decision-makers on their views of TCO in technology deployments, the company found that just 42 percent factor it into their purchasing decisions. The proportion is even lower for enterprise software (27 percent) and commodity software (11 percent).

When it comes to software products, total cost of ownership includes factors such as energy usage, performance efficiencies, cost of downtime, maintenance, upgrades and replacement - in addition to any upfront premiums or ongoing subscription fees.

Of these factors, cost of downtime is seen as the most critical, while no one seems to be paying particular attention to energy usage. Still, minimizing both downtime and energy consumption brings down total cost of ownership, ESET says, adding that software with a low system impact certainly has its benefits. 

To reduce energy usage, the company suggests, organizations should pay attention to the speed of their machines. Slower machines, besides being a burden on tech support and hurting overall employee productivity, also use more energy, which means higher costs and a greater impact on the environment. 

“The savings an organization can make by selecting a vendor with a low system impact solution could even outweigh the cost of the license itself,” ESET concluded.

Sead Fadilpašić

Sead is a freelance journalist with more than 15 years of experience in writing various types of content, from blogs, whitepapers, and reviews to ebooks, and many more, across sites including Al Jazeera Balkans, TechRadar Pro, IT Pro Portal, and CryptoNews.