A few features, in particular, tend to set legitimate ITAD companies apart from the pack. 

The ITAD space is busy. In recent years, new companies have adopted the IT Asset Disposition label at an increasing rate, making the job of finding the right match for your retired IT assets even harder than before. Arizona is no exception. 

In such an environment, it helps to know the signs that set legitimate ITAD companies apart from the opportunists. E-Scrap News recently cautioned that the number of self-described ITAD players has increased. Without proven asset protocols in place, they are still in the running for your business, underscoring the need for due diligence.  

So, when looking for ITAD services in Arizona, how do you find the right match? 

No company does, after all, want to repeat the mistakes of Morgan Stanley and other big corporations (Walmart, for example) that, surprisingly, have been accused of mishandling e waste and the disposition of IT assets. The financial services giant infamously tossed aside its seasoned ITAD provider for a non-certified company that appears to have offered no more than an enticingly low quote. It was a decision that would come at a high price tag. Earlier this year, Morgan Stanley agreed to a settlement of $60 million to resolve a data breach lawsuit. 

But there are certain features to look for that will help you find the right ITAD services in Arizona. 

ITAD services in Arizona: What to look for

The right certifications

Certifications are not everything but they are a good start. A company that lacks these industry marks of achievement has no way of proving that it provides a systematic approach to managing the disposition of retired IT assets.

A certified company, in contrast, has been compelled to spend months aligning the entire operation with industry best practices. In addition, annual audits ensure the certified company continuously meets the certification criteria. The result brings a real return on investment as the robust requirements that your ITAD partner adheres to create a more efficient operation that your company will benefit from. 

In the ITAD space, there are primarily two certifications to look for: 
  • NIST SP 800-88: The NIST guidelines are published by the U.S. National Institute for Standards and Technology and include rigorous and comprehensive instructions on best practices for data sanitation. You should, upon request, be able to receive data destruction reports and certificates, including an end-of-use certificate, DLA Form 1822, a Certificate of Destruction (DOD),  and a Certificate of Sanitization (COS) that capture and list serial numbers of sanitized drives. 
  • R2: R2 is the recycling standard administered by Sustainable Electronics Recycling International (SERI). Certified electronics recyclers have demonstrated they continually meet specific high environmental standards and safely manage used electronics. Once certified, the recyclers undergo regular third-party audits to ensure continued adherence.  

The right solutions

Customization beats cookie-cutter solutions. This holds true for ITAD as well. The pickup, refurbishment, and resale of high-value lab and test equipment, for instance, requires a different approach and a different set of expertise than the remarketing of, let’s say, smartphones and laptops. 

ITAD is, like E-Scrap News also pointed out, about partnering and problem-solving. A partnership that delivers the same service regardless of your needs really is no partnership at all. 

As you evaluate ITAD services in Arizona, inquire about the step-by-step process. Will experts in compliance, sustainability, logistics, and ITAD optimize each step? Your goals and priorities should govern the process, from the initial design of your disposition strategy to the execution of master services agreements (MSAs) and standard operating procedures (SOPs). 

The right attitude 

The company culture of your ITAD partner matters to your satisfaction and success. Once you have narrowed down your search to certified companies, it’s time to look beyond the certifications. 

Many studies address the role company culture plays in helping organizations thrive. Happy employees stick around longer, develop better in-depth knowledge, are more productive, and show higher levels of engagement. In the end, that’s good news for your organization, too. 

Questions like the following can help identify whether the ITAD company in question is right for you or not:

  • What’s the turnover rate like? 
  • Do you get prompt responses to your queries? 
  • How does management address lower-level employees? 
  • Does the work environment seem cut-throat or cooperative?
  • In short, does it seem like you would be working with an engaged group of people who genuinely care about your needs?

The right price

It may seem simple but the cost of services can be a telltale sign of who’s legitimate and who’s not. Morgan Stanley dropped everything for a low quote, right? By now, we know the devastating result. 

As a general rule, if a quote comes in way below everyone else’s, it could be a sign that something is amiss. Running a certified ITAD company is not free. It requires significant resources to provide customized solutions with optimized value recovery, leverage the latest in data destruction technology, stay up-to-date on all certifications, and hire experienced personnel.

While you certainly don’t want to pay an excessively high price, beware of eye-catchingly low estimates. If it seems too good to be true, it probably is. 

In a competitive market, many companies vye for a piece of your business. When you examine available ITAD services in Arizona, make sure you select a certified partner who truly deserves to be working with you. 

Need help? Please don’t hesitate to reach out.

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