A workstation differs from a personal computer in that it is faster and more capable and it is intended for business or professional use. They are used by organizations which require a faster microprocessor and a large amount of random access memory, such as the financial service sector. Workstations can also mean the desks your computer is standing on, and the items it comes with such as cabinets and chairs.
These days, many furniture workstations are modular which allows for flexibility and collaboration. Each industry has a different workstation need. Trading floors, for example, are packed with desks in close proximity, each holding several CPU units, monitors, phones… This, and the hundreds of employees milling around, produces a high amount of heat which needs to be disseminated as fast as possible to maintain a healthy and comfortable work environment.
When it comes to financial sector installations, there are three issues which need to be addressed:
- Heat Management: To allow a CPU to work as reliable as possible while extending the equipment lifetime, they need to be kept cool, usually by built in fans. If you cool technology at the source, it is more efficient than using the building’s HVAC system. This will reduce the need of making expensive changes to the building’s infrastructure and will prolong the life of the equipment.
- Access to computer units: Cable routes, such as trays, are important to keep cables organized and out of the way. However, the equipment itself needs to be easily accessible in case servicing is needed. An equipment malfunction can cost a trading company millions of dollars if the problem can’t be quickly corrected.
- Positioning of trading screens and terminal equipment: Screens need to be mounted in such a way that they can easily be adjusted for use throughout the day, sometimes by multiple users (at a 24/7 environment where shiftwork is involved). They must also be mounted in such a way that they provide easy access to cables and ports.