Industrial tablets that are certified intrinsically safe – meaning they won’t cause a spark that could ignite a combustible environment – are ideal for communicating and managing data in real time in chemical, pharma, oil and gas, and other hazardous industries. These tablets enable all personnel to more efficiently complete inspections, fill out digital forms, access electronic manuals, consults offsite teammates, share data, utilize industry apps and more, in hazardous area operations.
But which is the most appropriate way to deploy intrinsically safe tablets and the services they provide to the employees who need them? Aegex Technologies offers three basic options for acquiring tablets and accompanying accessories and software:
The answer to which type is right for your organization depends on:
1. the amount of time the tablets are needed
2. the types of activities they will be used for
3. the availability of allotted capital
Companies wishing to move away from pen and paper and digitize their operations for improved efficiency and cost-savings should consider purchasing intrinsically safe tablets for all or some personnel working in hazardous locations.
- Efficiency: Purchasing tablets for teams or at least for the managers of teams can help improve productivity in operations because processes and tasks can be performed more quickly, and managers can easily oversee their teams’ activities. This improved efficiency is key in critical industrial operations, where even seemingly small improvements in speed and efficiency can mean millions of dollars in savings.
- ROI: The software that tablets operate can be easily upgraded periodically, effectively extending the life of the devices for years at a time. Because most intrinsically safe tablets are also highly rugged and able to withstand harsh working environments, they can typically last several years, making for a strong return on investment.
- Security: Companies concerned with maintaining the highest level of cyber security are able to control how the devices are used, which applications are deployed, and which types of security are installed if they are wholly owned by the organization.
- Longevity: Purchased tablets are obviously the company’s to keep and can be assigned to employees or shared over shifts, plus they can be passed down to new hires over the years, as appropriate.
If a company wishes to cloud-connect large numbers of employees without investing a large capital expenditure at the outset, leasing may be the best option.
- Monthly OpEx: Leased intrinsically safe tablets can offer exponential improvements in efficiency and productivity for whole divisions of hazardous are employees at a monthly operating cost. Thus, the cost per device is low per month, and, depending on the leasing terms or financing, interest can often be deferred until the end of the lease.
- End-of-Lease Options: Leases can be either Fair Market Value (FMV), in which the tablets are paid for monthly and can then be purchased at their market value at the end of the 2- or 3-year term, or, the company can choose to simply return the equipment upon termination of the lease. Organizations could also select a $1 buyout lease that carries a higher monthly payment, but then the tablets are purchased for only $1 or nominal amount at the end of the lease term.
- No Obsolescence: Companies may also choose to upgrade to new tablets at the end of the lease, thus protecting against any potential device obsolescence.
- Services: The cost of software-as-a-service and accompanying accessories can also be rolled into the monthly lease along with the tablets, making for a simple, quickly deployable solution.
Companies wishing to take advantage of the efficiency and cost-effectiveness of intrinsically safe tablets for short-term projects could choose to rent them. Small numbers of tablets and their accessories and software could be rented to:
- test the tablets in certain scenarios
- complete one-time inspections
- manage a shutdown or turn-around
- conduct other short-term operations
Rented tablets can be:
- Easily Billed: Tablets can be billed as a weekly expense for a finite period of time, typically with a company credit card as a guarantee.
- No Commitment: Users can easily begin projects immediately without the company having to make a longer-term decision about device needs.
Whether you buy, lease or rent intrinsically safe tablets, these versatile devices will help streamline operations with efficient data management and communications that adds up to significant cost-savings and improved productivity.
Contact an Aegex representative to discuss which option is best for your organization’s needs.