Decommissioning 4000 Computers a Year for a Leading University

The Problem

As one of New Zealand’s leading universities, this client relies on its IT hardware to perform at its best all year round. As a result, the University requires constant updates to their computer and IT-related devices and regularly turns over large volumes of computer devices. With over 23,000 computers on campus, 4,000 of which need to be refreshed and upgraded annually, they require a thorough and standardised way to decommission old equipment.
The client often deals with sensitive information and needs a complete and secure way to have their devices wiped of all data before being put out of commission. This service needs to be confidential and certified to ensure the policies of the University are maintained.

Additionally, as part of facility changes, the University periodically needs to update and decommission other equipment. This includes Cisco phones, old servers or, more generally, anything with a power cord.

Finally, they require cohesive and comprehensive reporting to properly manage assets and understand the total costs of ownership. As part of this, the client requires sustainability and e-waste reporting to ensure they are meeting their carbon output expectations.

The Solution

BMS was able to provide a full-scope solution to the client. We take care of all asset management, remarketing, and e-waste requirements, and as such, the University does not need to hire multiple subcontractors. This allowed us to establish a standardised procedure for decommissioning their devices. The procedure includes weekly visits to the campus to collect old machines and continuous consultation on further steps and best practices.

We established an understanding with the client that BMS would collect all devices and clear them of data entirely, using Blancco, the premium industry-standard data-erasing software. In some cases, depending on the sensitivity of the information on the device, the University will erase the data themselves before collection, and we use Blancco software once again before final decommissioning for additional security and peace of mind. We can then remarket the majority of their retiring devices, continuing their lifespan, and diverting them away from landfills. In the process, we generate and return significant funds to the University.

Periodically, the client requires additional e-waste services. In these cases, we deliver e-waste bins to the University and collect them when they are full. In extreme cases, such as decommissioning 1000s of Cisco phones, where the volume is too large for our bins, we deliver pallets to the University to be collected and decommissioned offsite.

The Outcome

As a result of our involvement with the University, they can hand over devices surplus to their requirements with the trust that BMS will provide the certification that we clear their devices of data entirely.
They now have a standardised, certified, and sustainable process for decommissioning old devices and disposing of e-waste. This has meant the University can dispose of its e-waste properly and keep its harmful waste out of landfill, leading to their total percentage of actual waste being as low as 6%.

As part of the full-scope service we provide the University, we also deliver a comprehensive quarterly report that allows them to better understand their devices and their lifecycles. On top of this, we also provide a sustainability report that means the client can keep track of its carbon footprint.

Finally, because of our extensive local and international buyer network, we are able to consistently achieve optimal IT remarketing sales values for surplus computer equipment, ensuring our client receives the highest proceeds for their IT asset disposals. So far, this has led to hundreds of thousands of dollars going back into the University, helping them fund facilities and other devices they otherwise may not have had the budget for.