Four Tips For Next Year’s IT Budget

Thomas Fox is president of Tech Experts, southeast Michigan’s leading small business computer support company.

As the year winds down, you’re undoubtedly working out plans for 2016, and preparing your IT budget is top on that list. Every year presents unique network, server, and technology challenges that need to be addressed.

The increasing ubiquity of cloud services is something small business owners need to consider, but working out the basic budget items should take priority. Here are four tips to give your business a little bit of breathing room when it comes to planning next year’s IT expenses.

Think in the long term
When planning your IT budget, it’s important to consider both short-term and long-term investments that you’ll be making for the sake of your business.

The fact that so many services, like cloud computing, are being turned into operational expenses is placing an emphasis on a model based around affordable payments rather than heavy up-front costs. It’s important to consider how these costs will affect your budget, especially over the long-term.

Invest in training your team
There’s far too little investment in ensuring that employees understand the benefits of the latest technology solutions. What good are the latest IT solutions if your staff has no clue how to use them?

By properly training your team to take advantage of new technology, you’re essentially providing them with skills necessary to make their workflow easier and make them more productive.

This helps them get the most out of their technology and maximize the amount of work they’re able to perform.

Consider your storage options
Your organization shouldn’t just be taking advantage of one centralized storage system for its data. Instead, plan for multiple locations where your data can be stored. The primary reason for this is redundancy. Business continuity in the event of a disaster relies on having your data accessible.

Another reason for this is to optimize your organization’s access to its critical data. For this purpose, cloud computing can be exceptionally helpful for both data storage and data backup solutions.

Plan for software and hardware upgrades
Unexpected hardware failure can quickly drain your IT budget, not only in terms of replacement equipment, but also lost productivity and downtime.

Not only are hardware failure and software issues hard to predict, but they’re also expensive to replace. Your budget should always have assets allocated toward mitigating and replacing technology that’s critical to the success of your business. Otherwise, you could be dealing with huge expenses that will, without a doubt, break your budget, and force you to come up with funds from elsewhere.

For more tips on how to optimize your IT budget and get the most out of your technology, give Tech Experts a call at (734) 457-5000.