Five Ways to Spend Your Remaining IT Budget Wisely
It’s December — the final quarter of most fiscal years. Have you thought about how you’re going to spend what’s left of your annual IT budget?
Unspent budget dollars at the end of the year can be lost easily. Even worse, when the budget is put together for next year, everyone will be looking for areas where they can make cuts. If you end December with unused dollars, your department may end up with fewer available funds in the next fiscal year.
As the adage goes, you have to use it — or lose it.
This year, don’t let your unused budget go to waste. We put together some tips that will help you put those leftover dollars to good use. Here are five ways to best use your remaining 2017 IT budget.
#1: Take a closer look at your maintenance contracts.
The end of the fiscal year is a good time to check up on all your hardware maintenance contracts to make sure your mission-critical equipment is adequately protected. If you’re tired of dealing with multiple vendors for support — or if you’re unsatisfied with the level of service you’re receiving — look at bringing all your hardware under a comprehensive management program. For example, Onsite Hardware Support and Custom Onsite Hardware Support have fast response times with 24-hour phone support 365 days a year. They also provide next-day parts replacement and onsite support.
#2: Consider investing in new software and applications.
With some extra budget to spend, why not take a look at software, services and applications that can simplify your business processes and improve efficiency and functionality? Take a look at all your software, services and applications from accounting to project management and marketing automation. It’s a great time to consider upgrading to online-hosted software. For example, with Microsoft Office 365, you gain access to your emails, important documents, contacts and calendar anytime, anywhere. Plus, it’ll allow you to ditch your SQL in-house server, which will save the company a substantial amount of money.
#3: Take advantage of end-of-year deals on new equipment and infrastructure.
There is always room for new or upgraded hardware to replace legacy systems with more modern IT equipment — especially when you can take advantage of the great year-end deals. Maybe your extra end-of-year budget can even be put towards outfitting next year’s expected new hires with state-of-the-art computers and mobile devices. Upgrading your business phone system to one that is easier and more cost effective to manage is another way to wisely invest year-end budget dollars.
#4: Purchase additional cloud storage.
Cloud storage is a critically important investment for every small business. As more and more businesses turn toward the cloud — and the threat of cyber and ransomware attacks continues to increase — signing up for new cloud services or investing in additional cloud storage is always a smart business move. Increased cloud storage frees up storage on your company’s computers and network, while also providing more data backup capacity and protection and serving as a file-sharing tool for your business. There are many cloud storage solutions available to small businesses today. The best one for you depends on how much, and what kind of data, you want to back up.
#5: Invest in spare parts for your server.
When your server crashes or hardware fails, business stops. Having critical spare parts on hand such as processors, memory and hard drives enables you to prepare for the unexpected and minimize downtimes in productivity. Quality spare parts are a critical component of your IT environment because they allow you to always be ready to make quick repairs when your server goes down.
Compatible parts aren’t always easy to find on short notice. By planning ahead and having them on hand, you can make repairs much faster and significantly minimize downtime without negatively impacting your business. A spare parts kit allows you to make quick repairs, which will keep your business up and running efficiently — ultimately saving you money in the long run.
Remember, when it comes to spending your remaining budget at the end of the year, it’s always a good idea to ask your team for input. Where do they think money would be spent most effectively? What tools do they need to be more efficient at their jobs and increase the overall productivity of your business? Too often, small businesses spend their remaining IT budget on equipment and services they may not really need — or that may not support their future technology growth plans.
The best IT vendors will work closely with your business as a strategic partner and help you map out a plan that serves your business now — as well as in the future.
To learn more about other ways to increase business productivity and efficiency in 2018 with end-of-year budget dollars, contact our team of experts today at 1-855-AVENTIS.