Refurbished Hardware to Repurpose Your Home
As we all find ways to cope with the changes that have been forced on us by COVID-19, many of us have been forced to convert our homes into makeshift offices and schools while we transformed into work-from-home employees, some of whom have to pull double-duty as educators.
That’s a lot to absorb in such a short amount of time, and while CDR Global may not have the latest tips on how to teach eighth-grade geography, we do know a thing or two about setting up an IT system, so we thought we’d offer our two cents and try to help make this crazy new life a little easier.
This blog post comes to you with a good-news/bad-news warning. The bad news is that hardware for work-from-home or home-schooling situations is flying off the shelves. Laptops, office chairs, wi-fi hotspots, and tablets are getting increasingly hard to find. The New York City school district, the largest in the country, just placed an order for 300,000 new iPads, and school districts in Boston and Chicago are following suit. The supply chain for tablets and Chromebooks is under severe strain, especially due to the fact that it almost entirely exists in China, and China is still trying to recover from the effects of the Coronavirus outbreak. Your local Best Buy might not have what you need.
We promised good news, and it comes in the form of the refurbished hardware market. Thanks to this increased demand for all sorts of hardware, purveyors of used and refurbished hardware have stepped into the gap and helped provide much of the needed hardware for a price that’s lower than most retail outlets.
Many of the guidelines for creating a productive space in your home will be the same for both remote-workers and students participating in tele-education. We thought these might help you as you reconfigure your space to be suitable for both work and learning.
The couch and bed aren’t going to work – You need a proper space, even if it’s just a clean spot on the kitchen table. Find something with decent lighting and enough room to spread out.
Develop your skills at finding refurbished hardware – If you know where to look, you can find used and refurbished hardware that will save you valuable dollars and deliver like-new performance. Start with the manufacturers, and see if they offer refurbished hardware. Look for certified service agents, and do plenty of comparison shopping so you have a good idea of the relative prices of your products. Consider visiting CDR Global’s eBay store to view our selection.
Consider your power needs – Something near an outlet is preferable, but we also recommend investing in an uninterrupted power supply (UPS) to make sure that you don’t lose any information. A few power strips and grounded extension cords wouldn’t hurt either.
Limiting distractions is ideal – Make work or school the focus of this space. Get away from the TV, and stay out of the center of household traffic if possible. We also recommend a good set of headphones to help block out noises and make it easier to work, both for students and adults.
Consider a hotspot if your wi-fi is unreliable – Your cell phone provider probably offers some options, but there are also third parties that can get you a reliable wi-fi hotspot. You may also check with your employer and see if their IT department has any solutions.
Get a bigger monitor – If you have the space, try to find a larger monitor. Both students and home-workers are prone to eyestrain if they spend too much time squinting at small screens. If you’re looking for refurbished hardware, larger monitors are not as expensive as you might think.
Take it easy on yourself – You’re not at the office, and your kids aren’t in a proper schoolhouse. You’ll need to bend some rules, just to make your new space livable. We’re all in uncharted territory now, and the goal is to just keep going. Don’t beat yourself up if you need a break or if you get distracted and start unloading the dishwasher. Make adjustments, keep your eye on the goal, and keep going.
As things continue to change, you can be sure that CDR Global will keep an eye on the IT industry and ITAD functions to make sure that you’re able to jump on any opportunities that arise. We hope that your businesses and families are able to stay safe and we look forward to working with you soon.