With IT, it is common that someone believes there is something that they can do to reduce their costs. That’s what it’s all about, isn’t it? “How can I make this cheaper?”. The simple answer is that you can make it cheaper by making a plan, sticking to that plan and outsourcing the things that you don’t know how to do to someone else. Things costs what they cost, but your efforts to reduce those costs is going to make it more expensive and more stressful for your business.
Start with the “make it cheaper” mentality. Businesses don’t want cheap, they want value. They want to feel that the money the business spent was worth it and spent wisely. Lower quality products aren’t value; they won’t provide for the goal your business is looking to accomplish – unless that goal is temporary. Less expensive service is not value. In many cases, less expensive means less experience and poor management. Sometimes you may be better off not spending any money than signing on with bad products and incompetent services.
When it comes to following a plan, if you spent money on some creating a plan and didn’t follow the plan, your business is wasting its money and time. Be prepared for changes and focus on doing things correctly, not just what is cheapest.
With technology, a business needs to consider how they’re using technology, not what technology they’re using. Seems like two ways of saying the same thing, but it’s not. One is intentional, the other is happenstance.
Does your business have a server? Why? Because some IT guy told you to or because it was inherited it when the business was bought? Do you understand how that server brings your business value? The average server replacement, for a mid-sized business is about $20,000. That’s a lot of money for something that you don’t understand. Be intentional and ask for justification, “How is this server going to bring value to my business? What are my options?”
Most companies have servers for one of three reasons:
- Domain Control (employee accounts, security, process automation)
- File storage and print
All three of those have cloud options. Many software packages are now available in the cloud. The cloud is literally just another computer or server, that connects to through the Internet. Most of those cloud-based software packages are available with monthly SaaS (Software as a Service) pricing. Instead of implementing a major software package for $200,000+, SaaS can be used for a couple grand a month. Less up-front cash and no need for a server. Domain Control and File/Print is all available through Microsoft 365, with Azure. That is also a SaaS based pricing, so your business don’t have the cash hit of a server.
SaaS is just one way to make a smart choice and save money. How many other things are sitting around your office or facility, that are just there because that’s the way it’s always been. You’re not sure if these things add value or not, so you may look into cheap options. The cheap solution that was put in place doesn’t work…because it’s cheap.
Start with value. Start with your business. How are you using technology, not what technology is your business using. Then plan for quality solutions that support your goals.