HP experiencing period of change

October 19, 2012

After struggling to maintain financial solvency and differentiate its products from its competitors, HP is moving to dramatically revise its strategies and return to fiscal health by 2015, TechCrunch reported.

According to the news source, HP CEO Meg Whitman recently outlined an extended plan that will see the company releasing important new products by 2014 and driving new revenues by 2015. While this ambitious plan has some merits, it also means that the company could face a few difficult years, making it vital that customers have alternative options for HP support and similar services during this period of transition.

Considering the implications of change
Regardless of expert views on how HP's plans will unfold, and opinions are mixed, any organizational change as severe as what HP is trying to accomplish will inherently disrupt a business. The details of this disruption are somewhat unclear and difficult to predict. However, it is common that customer service and support options are among the first things that fall by the wayside when organizations experience shake-ups.

The problem here is not necessarily that HP does not value its customers or consider their needs as important, it is that companies undertaking major strategic changes have so many critical operations to focus on that the emphasis shifts from other areas. No matter how important customer service is, it is rarely considered a critical revenue generation strategy by OEMs. Instead, their core competency is developing hardware solutions and broad business strategies. In the case of HP, efforts to revise the company's operations around cloud computing and other emerging trends could lead to fewer resources being diverted to service and support.

Maintenance implications
IT managers depending on HP solutions may want to consider being proactive about developing a third-party hardware maintenance plan in light of shifting strategies from the OEM. Subscribing to HP support services from a third-party maintenance provider can enable organizations to reduce support costs while getting more reliable and responsive customer service. Furthermore, maintenance providers have customer service as a core competency. Besides offering access to highly-trained technicians, the primary focus of many vendors in this space is providing better service than the OEMs. It is how they generate revenue and makes such a plan wise regardless of what is happening with an OEM.

Topics: OEM Hardware Maintenance