IT budgeting tips and preparing for economic uncertainty in the midst of the unknown

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Over the past two years, economies around the world have changed dramatically. In addition to economic downturns, industries are struggling due to supply chain delays, talent shortages and more. As a new year approaches, IT managers need to plan for future initiatives and find areas for cost savings. Adding economic uncertainty to the already difficult task makes the matter much more complex.

Identifying where and how to cut costs is not a straightforward process. Sometimes you feel like forces are working against you in the form of skills shortages, equipment backlogs, and pressure to invest in digital transformation.

I’m no stranger to IT budgeting, especially in unpredictable times; here is what my team prioritizes in the short and long term.

Establish clear lines of communication

In addition to recruiting experts from the field, IT teams must take into account changing technologies, services and rising costs. Despite the difficulty of creating and managing a complex budget, a solid plan is essential to guide your team through the rapid (and often permanent) changes in the IT industry.

Effective communication with your staff is also essential when planning major changes. Avoid operating in a vacuum when creating priorities; Lean on knowledgeable colleagues, strategic thinkers, and vendors within your solution provider partnerships for insights.

Overall, communication and the need for change provide your team with an opportunity to grow and invest in new methods and technologies. These moments will challenge your team to address and create efficiencies, resulting in stronger, more skilled professionals.

Maximize existing equipment and investments

Organizations large and small are used to doing more with less. In fact, supply chain disruptions over the past two years have had a monumental impact on the delivery of new OEM equipment due to semiconductor shortages.

IT teams are getting creative with sourcing and repairing equipment to maximize current resources. Our Express Service teams purchased extra parts and materials long before they were needed to ensure we had the right equipment on hand. Instead of waiting months or even years for new systems, we’re taking advantage of recertified and refurbished options. In return, we realize significant savings and extend the life of our investment.

In addition to lengthening hardware refresh cycles, we consolidate underutilized toolsets and subscriptions. OpEx dollars saved will be applied to new investments that support company goals and objectives.

Prepare for future priorities and what lies ahead

In addition to leveraging current investments, our IT team is implementing a strong work-from-home, work-from-office, and hybrid approach. Economic and cultural changes have already illustrated the demand for alternative ways of working; now our challenge includes assessing resources for video conferencing, collaboration tools and more.

Unfortunately, there is no single solution for prioritizing, planning, and forecasting IT budgets. The good news is that it is possible to reduce costs and meet business expectations. No matter how economic headwinds impact your industry, now is the time to find opportunities for resilience.

Jerry Gran is the IT Infrastructure and Security Manager at Express Services. Service Express is a data center solutions provider specializing in multi-vendor global maintenance, cloud, managed services, hardware solutions and more. Learn more on how Service Express can help your data center overcome supply chain hurdles.

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