IT budgets are a vital part of any business.
Helping to keep everything on track, aligning targets, providing support toward business goals and objectives, and necessary in order to maintain an adaptable and robust IT infrastructure.
Trust us, having a detailed IT budget can be a business life-saver.
In addition, in business, your technology can’t afford to fall behind; it must remain up to date, not only to allow your business to run smoothly and stay competitive but also to protect it from the ongoing threats cyber criminals pose.
However, IT budgets must be carefully planned, involve various stakeholders, and work alongside business objectives and goals if they’re to be successful.
To help you get started, we’ve pulled together our top tips for creating a budget for IT services.
(If you’re looking for IT support near me, look no further than our team of dedicated professionals, who are on hand and ready to meet your IT needs.)
IT budget areas
Personnel – both in-house and outsourced IT services
Infrastructure expenses – hardware, software, services, subscriptions
IT expenditure – purchase, day-to-day expenses, funds for specific project
Setting a budget for IT department
Learn from your past
The first place to start when planning future budgets is to start with your past budgets. These should be used as your baseline, allowing you to look at where fluctuations arose during different periods, areas of consideration, and where you could trim budget areas slightly and increase others.
Every line of the budget should tell the IT story behind it.
What is currently working well as part of your IT support services, and where could you implement areas for improvement?
This is a great area to involve other stakeholders in the business to gather feedback on what their current bugbears are, what they would like to see, and what systems, software, integrations, etc, would make their lives easier.
All of this helps to feed into up-and-coming priorities and allows you to establish these and then prioritise them in order.
You will also need to consider any up-and-coming business projects that could have IT expenses attached to them. For example, an office move, additional staff coming on board, etc.
Linked to this area of stakeholder buy-in, you might also be interested in our latest post on “best practices to support operational efficiency by outsourcing IT services.”
Align with company vision
Budgets must align with the overall company vision and objectives if you are to achieve long-term success. Look at areas where IT will enhance business performance, improve productivity, help support future opportunities, and more.
Identify recurring costs
When building a budget for IT support, recurring costs will take up a large percentage of this immediately, and these must be accounted for.
Things like staffing and costs related to your current IT services company, network infrastructure and security costs, cost of replacing hardware and software, ongoing subscriptions, business applications, etc.
You will also have to build regular maintenance and possible repairs into budgets, helping minimise downtime and disruption to the business.
Areas of budget setting for IT to bear in mind:
Always keep security at the forefront; we can’t emphasise enough how much you need to continuously be protected from cybercrime.
Don’t cut corners, the damage to systems, business operations, and reputation simply isn’t worth the risk. Always speak to your IT support to see how they can help further.
Make your budget decisions based on the data presented to you. Improving business efficiency, driving growth, and boosting productivity. Decision-making becomes more focused as we look to make more efficient use of resources.
Embrace new technology – you need it to boost productivity, security, and competitiveness.
IT budgets made easy
Ultimately, you need a smart budget that works for you. This means when preparing your budget:
- Take your time
- Look at the past and the present
- Work with other stakeholders
- Use estimates and adjust where necessary
- Align with company goals
- Budget for updates and replacements
- Invest in security
- Budget for IT training – big one when focusing on company culture and improving skills – not everyone is an IT expert and knows how to use all software.
IT services company
Setting budget for IT functions should be planned yearly but reviewed regularly, allowing you to spot any discrepancies or unexpected expenses early on, helping you to improve efficiency, optimise operational costs, and boost revenue.
Outsourcing your IT function to a professional team like Sand Communications can help you better plan for the future and support budgets. Offering solutions tailored to your business needs, you can have peace of mind knowing that your IT infrastructure and networks have 24/7 monitoring and security.
Don’t just tweak last year’s budget and hope for the best. Use your IT budget as an opportunity to create a roadmap – a strategic tool to achieve positive change.
To find out more call us on 01423 222333.