To recommend a computer system for a given business purpose you need to analyse the needs of customer and suggest a system that would suit them in terms of technical specification and budget. There are a number of things that you may need to consider carefully when recommending a computer systems for a given business purpose such as software requirements, hard disk storage capacity and accessibility for people with disabilities.
First and foremost if you are presenting a system to someone for a given purpose need you should layout your proposal in a clear format that displays a breakdown of the different components in the systems along with the prices, sub-totals and total price. It may be a good idea to attach a note to the client/customer justifying why you believe the system will meet their needs. Sometimes it is better to recommend two or more different computer systems and then talk to the customer and give them a choice of what they want based on a list of budget, mid range or high level parts that can be put together to build the system.
One of the key considerations for selection when recommending a system for a given business purchase is cost. The cost will be determined by the technical requirements of the system and the amount of software and external peripheral devices needed. Cost in also dependent on the budget of the person or organisation paying for the computer system.
Other considerations are the user requirements. This includes the software to be used, need for a maintenance contract and network requirements among other factors. Software to be used needs to be considered in advance as you will need to budget for this. You will also need to ensure that the system that you are going to recommend is powerful enough to run the software. For example if a software applications that is definitely required by the user states that system requirements are 4Gb Ram or more then there is no point recommending a computer system with on 2Gb of Ram. If a business user asks you to provide graphics design software for creating basic logos then you may be able to find a free version of software that meets their needs. However, if a graphic designer comes to you looking for a new computer system solution then then will need custom graphic design software such as Photoshop or Fireworks from Adobe. You will also need to look at other software utilities that may be required to maintain system performance. This utility software needs to be suitable for the system and user needs.
Another thing to look at when considering user requirements is network sharing requirements. Although most personal and business desktop machines come with pre-installed network cards these days you may have to source a network interface card it you want to connect to the internet or a LAN. Other things that need to be considered for network sharing is if the customer wants to set up a network themselves. If they wanted to have their own in house network you would need to consider the number of users that would be connected to the network and if they required a dedicated server or a powerful workstation that could be used as a network file share.
Depending on the level of support needed to maintain the system you will need to consider the need for a maintenance contract. A maintenance contract or service level agreement would outline what is included in terms of keeping the system up to date after it has been purchased. Obviously a large order of machines needs to come with a good level of support but this is not as important when purchasing a small number of systems. A maintenance contract would mainly be required for a company that did not have their own technical support team. When recommending computer systems for a given business purpose it is important to look at the level of post sales support offered before purchasing any systems.
When choosing a computer system for a given business purpose it’s also important to look at the user requirements in terms of outputs required. If you want high definition video output you will need a HD video card with HDMI output. This may be required for a graphic designer or video editor. Other considerations would be the need to project the out onto a large screen and in this case you need to ensure that the system that you suggest comes with appropriate cables to connect to projectors. If you are connecting to a wireless printer you need to ensure that the system you select has wireless capability. You will need to consider the number of input and output devices that will connect to the system at any one time so that you can ensure that the system has the correct number of ports and connectors to be able to connect to each output device.
Another consideration is the need for integration with other systems. This means connecting to other systems easily and effectively. One example would be to connect a computer system to a home entertainment system, in this instance you need to consider how the systems are connected together and design your system so that it can connect with your entertainment system using the correct audio and video ports. You will also need to consider the storage and file sharing capabilities when linking two systems.
Depending on the tasks that are going to be done on the system and the software that is going to be installed you will need to consider the processing power of the computer system. If a system was needed for general office use such as word processing and spreadsheets along with web browsing and email then the processing power is not a massively important factor. However, for companies that complete tasks that require a massive amount of processing then this needs to be looked at in advance. Think of something like 3d movie rendering that requires a lot of calculations and processes then a fast processor speed is important to carry out a massive amount of instructions per second.
Depending on the use needs the storage capacity must be considered. For general office needs a hard disk drive of about 200Gb should be more than enough and this can be backed up and archived regularly. For companies that create large files on a regular basis and rely on constantly backing up their data then servers with terrabites of storage must be put in place to meet their needs.
When recommending a computer system for a given business purpose another factor that must be consider is accessibility for disabled users. Text to speech software may be needed for a user with poor eye and other factors such as the user’s posture should be looked at to ensure the user is as comfortable as possible when using the system.
When selecting a system for a particular user you need to think of the ICT competence of the intended user. If the end user is not tech savvy then you need to ensure that they receive intial training on using the system and the system must also be tailored so that it is as easy to use as possible by selecting the correct software and peripherals to meet their needs. Their training requirements should be considered as part of the initial and ongoing costs when providing a system for an end user.