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8 minute readIT Budgeting: 7 Tips When Your Budget Falls Apart

IT budgeting occurs when a company specifically allocates money to specific IT programs within the company. This budget should list funding for all projects and technologies within this department. 

Expenses included in an IT budget may include staff salaries, as well as one-time expenses for certain projects. For the most part, companies prepare an annual budget but in certain cases, a company may create a specific budget for specific projects or quarters.

Creating an IT budget should not be difficult, but in order to be successful, it should be created with specific goals in mind.

Reasons Why Your IT Budget Failed 

Although you may have spent countless hours creating your IT budget, there are a few common reasons why your IT budget failed.

Not taking enough time to let the budget work

  • Don’t expect results immediately, there are a lot of moving parts to a budget. Trust the process and allow the budget to do its work as you make adjustments along the journey. 

Overpaying for Equipment 

  • Upgrades and new equipment are nice to have but are extremely costly and usually unnecessary. With the right third party maintenance support plan, you can save thousands while your old hardware works good as new. 

Budget Lacks Balance. 

  • Knowing where your company’s money needs to go is crucial. Where does the money go first? What parts of the budget are more flexible?

No Discipline 

  • There is no need to waste the time of creating a budget if you are not going to stick with it. 

Not Making Proper Adjustments 

  • After a few months you may realize that you overestimated certain expenses while underestimating others. Reevaluating your budget can be an easy way to find extra cash.

Didn’t Budget for Annual Expenses.

  • There are certain expenses that you only pay a few times a year that are easily forgotten in the budget. Make sure to include all fixed and variable costs when calculating your IT budget.

No Emergency Fund 

  • The unexpected can happen at any time and leave you with holes in your pockets. Overestimating costs or setting aside an amount of cash allocated for emergencies can help cover surprises.

Tips for IT Budget Failure

7 Tips When Your Budget Falls Apart

#1 Reevaluate Your Budget 

If you are struggling to keep your budget together the first step is to reevaluate your budget. Where are you spending the most? What aspects can you save on or decrease in spending?

#2 Reconstruct Under One Contract 

Rather than pay for your support from one contract and your equipment from another, wouldn’t it make sense to place it all under one contract? This accounts for huge success when budgeting. By going to one provider of maintenance, support, and equipment, you save money and time.

#3 Negotiate Support Terms to Your Benefit 

Don’t pay for coverage that you do not use. If you are using certain services then you should not be paying for them. Negotiating a support service contract tailored to your company’s needs can free up hundreds of dollars.

#4 Search & Save on the Secondary Market 

Similar to purchasing cars, there is really no need to purchase your data center equipment. Purchasing your equipment on the secondary market, from suppliers such as Reliant, allows you to maximize your budget for the same results. 

#5 Stop Upgrading

When your equipment becomes EOSL (end of service life) or EOL (end of life) your first instinct may be to purchase new equipment. This is not what you want to do. Instead, extend the life of your equipment.

#6 Third Party Maintenance Support

Although your OEM (original equipment manufacturer) may not support your equipment through EOL or EOSL, a third party maintenance (TPM) provider will. The benefits of Third Party Maintenance are huge. By purchasing TPM from a provider like Reliant, not only can you save up to 70%, but you can fully cut back on maintenance costs and save your budget as well.

#7 Set a Realistic Budget

Don’t get overzealous, on paper it can seem much easier to save on expenses. Set your company up for success not failure. Shave off expenses gradually not all at once. Most companies won’t be able to save thousands of dollars overnight. Perfecting an IT Budget is a process, trust it. 

Why You Need a strong IT budget

Benefits of a Strong IT Budget Strategy 

There are many benefits of a strong IT budget strategy. Not only does it allow you to focus your time on other important strategies, but it also helps you to manage your money effectively.

Regardless of if you have the funds, it is important to allocate appropriate resources to the right projects. By having a strong budget you can monitor the performance of your company, meet your objectives, and improve your all-around decisions for the business.

A good budget strategy allows you to identify problems before they occur. This allows you to see problems ahead of time and avoid scrambling when the budget fails. Most of all it will help you plan for the future.

Accurate Budget

How To Create a Successful IT Budget

Compare Your IT Spending to Your Competition

It is important to compare yourself to your competitors because it will give you a general idea of what you should be spending. If you are far above your competitors in spending then you may be able to identify your problem.

Be Aware of What is Happening in the Rest of the Organization

Your IT department’s goals should align with the rest of the business’s goals. Your budget should support the entire company, not only the IT department. 

Identify Your Needs

Evaluate Hardware and Equipment

  • Do you have hardware to last you through the year?
  • Are any of your products becoming EOL (end of life) or EOSL (end of service life)?
  • What will that mean for your hardware?
  • What maintenance support do you have?

After identifying what your department has available, you need to ensure that your needs will be met. Make sure you have a great maintenance provider and look into TPM (third party maintenance) to decrease budget costs.

Monitor Your Budget Throughout the Year

One huge mistake that many IT departments make in regards to the budget is to put off taking stock until it is due. This can leave you extremely shocked and unprepared. Not only might you realize that you are way over budget before year’s end, but you might also find that some of your equipment has an expiring warranty

How Third Party Maintenance Supports your IT Budget 

Third party maintenance (TPM) is an incredible alternative to original equipment manufacturer (OEM) support contracts. Typically, OEM contracts are restrictive and incredibly expensive. 

Third party maintenance (TPM) contracts, such as those from Reliant, offer the same, or better, support for 40-70% less cost. This allows you to spend your IT budget in other areas. 

TPM providers are also experts in their field. They offer support 24/7, regardless of where your data center is located in the world. 

Typically, OEMs end their service on your equipment once it reaches a certain age. TPM providers offer you the chance to extend the life of your equipment, rather than spend huge amounts of money to replace them when they are still functioning perfectly.

As an IT hardware maintenance and support company, Reliant offers reliable and economical solutions to protect your hardware. Contact us today for a quote, and to find out how you could be saving. 

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Reid Smith-Vaniz

by Reid Smith-Vaniz

Reid is the founder and CEO of Reliant Technology and for 14 years has pursued his mission to remove the pain associated with maintaining IT infrastructure. Reid writes on common challenges related to maintaining, servicing, tracking, budgeting, and upgrading technology.

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