The Top 3 Reasons Why IT Budgeting is Critical to Your Firm’s Success
Somehow, December is upon us yet again, which can only mean one thing: a lot of businesses out there are currently trying to figure out how to hit the ground running as we move into 2020 in just a few short weeks.
Not too long ago, I sat down with a fairly new client of ours for a lunch meeting and we were discussing this very process. As someone who has been in this business for many years, it’s something I’m going through right now myself – so it was nice to commiserate with someone about all of it for an hour over a delicious meal.
But when the topic turned to budgeting, this client said something to me that I’d like to take some time to discuss with all of you today. He told me that the 2020 budgets for nearly all of his departments were accounted for, with the sole exception of IT. He said he didn’t really “see the need” to put too much thought in it because he saw IT as a way to “maintain the status quo,” so to speak. Other areas of the business were responsible for growth and innovation, so he’d rather focus his attention on those elements instead. He’d figure out his IT budget as he went along next year.
While he’s certainly entitled to his opinion… it is MY opinion that he is dead wrong. Because IT budgeting isn’t just critical to the health and well-being of your technology infrastructure. It’s absolutely critical to your firm’s long-term success for three major reasons that I’d love to take the opportunity to explore.
IT Budgeting is About Preparing for the Future
Maybe the biggest reason why IT budgeting is so important to your firm’s success is also one that is near and dear to my own heart: upgrading.
People are still not upgrading hardware, software and even operating systems when the opportunity becomes available to them and, in my opinion, it’s an incredibly serious issue.
Case in point: we’re just a few short weeks away from Microsoft officially ending support for the Windows 7 operating system. Yes, your Windows computers will still work after that date on the calendar finally arrives – but they’ve essentially transformed into a ticking time bomb, too.
Your machines are going to slow down, ultimately harming productivity. New vulnerabilities will be uncovered and there will be little, if anything, that you can do about them. Every machine in your infrastructure will become a major ransomware vulnerability just waiting to be taken advantage of by someone who knows what they’re doing.
The price of a new computer is only $350 these days – a small price to pay for the peace-of-mind that comes with knowing you’re protected from all angles.
But if you don’t know how you’re going to PAY for those computers, addressing these issues becomes far easier said than done.
Support is Only Going to Get More Expensive
To continue to use the example of Windows 7, another reason why IT budgeting is critical to your firm’s success has to do with the fact that support is only going to get more expensive over time.
Let’s say that you experience a best case scenario and, even though you’re still operating on Windows 7, you never experience a security breach to speak of. Terrific – but that doesn’t mean your problems are over.
You’re still going to run into issues and you’re still going to need to turn to providers like LANMasters to fix them. We can do it, make no mistake – but after a certain point, there is no such thing as a “simple fix” any more. Even routine maintenance is going to cost you a tremendous amount of money – which are funds that easily could have been allocated to more beneficial areas of your business had you properly budgeted in the first place.
Keep Your Eye on the Prize
In the end, perhaps the biggest reason why IT budgeting is so important is because it focuses you to maintain perspective on the bigger picture.
As a business owner, you know exactly where you’d like to see your organization end up in five years. The various IT initiatives that you’re beginning TODAY are a large part of how you’re going to get there. But unless you know what those initiatives actually are and how you’re going to pay for them, progress will be slow and innovation will be non-existent. So rather than dealing with a situation like that, know that you can avoid all of these issues by getting into the habit of proper IT budgeting today and sticking with it for as long as possible.
Never forget that as a business leader, you’re making countless important decisions on a daily basis. But unless those decisions are based on actionable intelligence and insightful analysis, you can never be truly confident that you’re making exactly the right move at exactly the right time.
Your IT infrastructure is critical to your firm’s success, which means that your IT budgeting is critical, too. Without the second element, it’s almost impossible to account for the first – which means that accomplishing your goals as we move into 2020 becomes far, far more difficult than you realize.
Ready to Plan Your IT Budgeting?
So if you're ready to create the right IT budget that your own business needs to thrive in the new year, terrific - there's a solid chance that we'll be able to help. Please contact either myself or a colleague at LANMasters today for your free introductory phone call. It'll put us in an excellent position to make sure our organizations are a good fit for one another, thus allowing us to to help address all of your IT budgeting needs and more.
Mike Della Pia is the President of LAN Masters, Inc., an Orlando IT support company that has been helping small businesses stop focusing on IT and getting back to doing business the past 15 years. Connect with Mike on LinkedIn.