Why IT really fails to perform.
The joke is that the only factor that really impacts operational efficiency, automation, and availability of IT, is quality of the staff. Even if it were "old hardware" that was causing some problems... thats easy to fix for a few thousand pounds, dont spend more than a moment on it.
Most of the companies that I meet that have badly performing IT need to fire 80% of their IT staff and up the salaries by about 40% in order to get good people. Quite a bit more expensive than buying a new Dell box... which is somehow going to make everything run smoother?!?! There may also be an argument that "if we were all still running Pentium III chips, then maybe things would be configured properly and efficiently", CPU cycles, RAM, and IO would be a more precious commodity and not something to be squandered.
High quality IT staff also have an easier time justifying some new servers being bought since they know how to plan and how to express IT expenditure in terms the business will understand/value.