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Industry TCO Estimates

Hardware and software costs account for only a small portion of the total cost of ownership of any contemporary system. When IT and user labor costs are factored in, the hardware and software costs account for only 15 percent of the total cost of ownership.

As you provide more functionality and capability to end users, TCO rises. As you install more software or provide more complex hardware, you pay increasingly more for support and maintenance.

As you can see, TCO provides a good model for evaluating computing costs—visible and invisible, budgeted and unbudgeted. TCO shouldn't be your sole determining factor for choosing a system, but you should be aware of these costs and plan for them. You must always balance the costs of providing a system versus the benefits to the business.

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