For a lot of companies, Information Technology (IT) is seen as simply a cost center — a set of tools that help the business, and the costs for these tools are dictated by immediate needs. Costs for technology appear unpredictable – they spike when things break, or if the company expands, or for a variety of reasons. These unexpected spikes put pressure on the company’s cash flow, and often, decisions are made based upon available capital, rather than strategic need.
It should not be this way!
Your company’s IT Infrastructure is an investment, and there should be a return on that investment, in increased production, cost containment or business agility. Companies that embrace the notion of strategic planning for their IT (including an annual budget) reap a number of benefits from this paradigm.
By having a budget that lists the company’s IT assets and their age, it’s possible to do some “future-proofing”. By refreshing aging technology in an orderly fashion, it’s possible to plan for the replacement and the costs associated with it. By looking at the IT Infrastructure as a whole, rather than paying attention to what’s failing, you can take better control of the costs of that infrastructure.
When the IT Infrastructure becomes stable and reliable, due to aging assets being cycled out prior to failure, production should be better. Downtime for any part of your company’s technology can cost thousands of dollars per hour. With a budget, you can spend far less money preventing costly outages and downtime. Plus, employees stay productive because the tools they depend on are consistently reliable.
Older technologies, even when coaxed into lasting past their prime, have a greater cost for support and security risks than more up-to-date technologies. Having a budget helps ensure that your technology is better protected – software and license renewals are planned, and included in the budget, and upgrades to software and hardware can be planned in an orderly fashion.
What this boils down to, is with an annual IT budget, you can take control of your company’s technology. Without a budget or strategic plan, the technology tends to be in control. You don’t want your technology calling the shots at your company!
Clare Computer Solutions offers strategic planning, (including annual IT budgets) for all its managed services clients, and we have seen time and time again how these clients benefit from the practice. The end of summer is an ideal time to start thinking about your company’s IT budget for the coming year – contact us, and we can help!
The post Why Your Company Needs an Annual IT Budget appeared first on IT Consulting & Planning Blog | San Ramon, All East Bay.
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