I live in Minnesota, and we joke about how there are two seasons here – Winter and Road Construction. But every year as Spring passes away and school ends a new season arrives – moving season.
This year my family participated in moving season for the first time in 15 years.
After a decade and a half at our previous address, we have moved into a “new” house. Built in 1998, the home may not be brand new, but it is 123 years younger than the home we left. Built in 1875, that home needed more work (read $$$) than we were willing to invest.
So, we decided to abandon our city neighborhood and live in the suburbs of the Twin Cites for the first time. As anyone could have predicted, the process of this move was not as smooth as we had hoped. Our struggles yielded a few valuable lessons.
First, stuff accumulates over time – more than you think.
Our house was three stories with a detached garage. It also had a full cellar. Yes, a cellar – basements are constructed of concrete or cinder blocks. Ours was a limestone foundation. Basement seems too fancy a word.
We had a lot of places to put “stuff,” so many things were out of sight, out of mind. There were many times during the packing process when I said, “We still have this?” or, “I thought we threw this out years ago.”
Second, getting rid of things after a long period costs more.
Related to the first point, renting a dumpster for a house cleanout ends up costing more in time and money than if things had simply been disposed of when no longer used. We could have easily broken down and recycled the boxes piled up in the garage or donated unused furniture.
It’s a lesson learned for the new house. If we aren’t using it and won’t for the foreseeable future, we get rid of it. For us, less really has become more. More important, that is.
Third, not keeping track of things causes underutilization.
Even worse than accumulating items we didn’t need, we also lost track of purchases in the cellar. Ever bought a summer item on clearance and stored it for “next year”? We seemed to have had so many unused (and unopened) yard toys stashed away we could have run a summer camp.
Finally, get the right help, and the right amount of help.
Not everyone is suited to the same moving activities or moving at all. Some have logistical brains that can pack a truck and maneuver furniture around corners. Others have the gift of hospitality to feed a moving crew. When we found the right people for the right jobs, the moving process smoothed out.
We also learned that there can be “too many cooks in the kitchen.” More movers aren’t always better as they can interfere with one another during the move.
Anyone who has read one of my blogs knows I eventually get around to relating my life’s experiences to IT. Cue the transition . . .
These four lessons can easily apply to your organization’s IT lifecycle management practices. What “stuff” has accumulated in your enterprise? It could be hardware, software, or services.
Do you have a pallet of decommissioned gear waiting to be recycled? Are there software applications no one is using? Do you have unused service hours on the books that might expire? Any one of these or other examples could be costing time and money.
How does your organization keep track of its assets? Do you have an effective program that ensures optimal utilization of your investments? As I learned during my move, not using what has been purchased is a double loss of wasted budget and missed opportunity.
Finally, LRS IT Solutions is ready to find you the right help and the right amount of help. We engage with you on your terms and timeframe. Our seasoned team of experts stands ready to help you reach you IT goals. Contact us to find out how.
One last thing about moves – make sure your “open first” box stays with you in the car. Mine is stacked somewhere in the garage, dutifully unloaded by the moving crew. I’ll find my webcam – someday.
About the author
Patrick Schmidt is a Technology Lifecycle Management Specialist with LRS IT Solutions. For more than 25 years, he has been helping customers get a firm grasp on their asset and contract management with a combination of comprehensive service level analysis and lifecycle management best practices.