When looking to save money on business expenses you need to review past spending, one of the common areas being IT. Some considerations should be made to make sure you don’t put your business in a worse position by reducing IT coverage. This article will give you insight to saving on IT Expenses.
1. Budget & Forecast
IT Asset Management is a simple task that offers great benefit. Imagine replacing assets in an organised manner (to avoid productivity impact) and where it is budgeted (to avoid unexpected costs and pain to cashflow) before the assets get too old to show signs of fault or complete failure.
2. Running Old hardware has hidden costs
It’s normal to try to get the most out of an investment before renewing it. Your IT Service Provider should be able to give you documentation detailing the recommended specifications of equipment (see our Recommended Technology Platform document).
There comes a point when hardware becomes unsupported or too old to operate efficiently. When hardware becomes too old to operate efficiently, users become less productive due to system annoyances and general slowness. Less productivity means that you are getting less work done for your payroll bill.
3. Stay Secure
A security breach is a serious concern, ensure you have adequate insurance and that the insurance security obligations are met to ensure your policy is honoured.
The impact of a security breach could render your business insolvent, that’s how serious it can be. For most it would be an incredible nuisance with extended down time. And often it would take some time before you feel secure again.
Cutting costs on Security must be done very carefully, but it can be done when you have a team of skilled IT Professionals at your disposal. Ensure you trust your IT Team to take the necessary action to keep your business secure and meet those insurance obligations.
4. Keep your data safe
In the event of data loss or even inaccessibility, your business can experience significant downtime. Ensure your IT Service Provider performs regular backups (daily or more often) of your critical data and configurations.
Its one thing to perform backups regularly, but do you really know if those backups are usable? Interwise IT performs regular recovery simulations to ensure your backups are usable when you need them.
Another aspect often overlooked is the Disaster Recovery Plan – find out how long it is expected to take to recover from a complete disaster (fire, flood etc)
5. Hidden Installation Costs
When you get a quote from your IT Service Provider, don’t be afraid to ask them if there will be any additional costs such as installation fees. When we quote IT Software & Hardware we also detail any expected installation fees (if applicable) so you get the total price of supply & installation – No surprises!
6. Managed IT Agreements
Fixed Price & Managed IT Agreements particulars vary significantly between IT Service Providers, take the time to understand your requirements and the benefits you gain from a Managed IT Agreement.
Ensure your Managed IT Provider actually does what they say they will do. Reports that show detail of the services provided is a easy way to keep on top of this. Your service provider should always be happy to explain and show you what efforts are taken to ensure your service agreement remains in compliance.
Tailored agreements may have more exclusions to get the monthly cost down, make sure you are covered in the areas you need to be.
7. Leave it to the professionals
If you don’t have a checklist of tasks required to install and setup, you should leave it to the professionals. The reason being that a good IT Service Provider will keep documentation up to date – this helps when
- There is a problem with the hardware/software
- There is a change to the hardware/software
- New Asset Installation
How documentation benefits the customer
- It helps the IT technician understand the intended setup and fix the problem faster. Which saves you time in lost productivity and any IT Support costs (if applicable)
- It helps ensure your equipment is setup in a single interaction, rather than having to call IT for additional things they missed.
And as you have probably heard a thousand times, your time is best spent on more relevant tasks suited to your expertise.
8. Get Advice
Your trusted IT Service Provider should be able to advise ways to optimise and reduce your IT Spend.
Consider the following
- Moving services to Cloud – Such as Phones, Servers, Email & Data
- Optimising Processes
- Reviewing Service Requirements (Internet (Speed/Bandwidth), Phones (SIP Trunks) etc
- Optimise Licensing
- Optimise Recurring Subscriptions
- Review Software Applications
- Review IT Service arrangements
A reputable IT Service Provider (Like Interwise IT :) ) should be willing to help you get the most from your IT Spend.
- Understand what you are paying for
- Hold your IT Service Provider accountable
- Be Proactive and plan your IT Asset Renewals
- Be careful when cutting security costs
- Make sure your data is safe with backups and recoveries
- Ensure you have trust in your IT Service Provider, otherwise look for a new one
- Reach out to your IT Service Provider for help