It’s that time of year: Time to decide what to do with surplus IT budget. If you find yourself with some surplus in your IT budget and are trying to decide what to do with it here are a few suggestions that may be helpful in your decision making process.
Nice to Haves
Many companies get to the end of the year and find themselves with surplus budgets and ask the wrong questions. What do we NEED to do next can often times be answered with “Nothing! We don’t really NEED anything right now.” One approach to excess budgets is to ask the question, “Where can we invest that budget that we would otherwise not consider?” What are the “nice to have” initiatives or projects that you would otherwise not be considering? Think about things like:
- New Development Environments
- Monitor Refreshes
- Software Upgrades
- RAM Upgrades (both desktop and servers)
Employee Productivity Boosters
Employee Productivity can often times take a back shelf to necessity. Simple additions to an employee’s work life can increase productivity as well as improve employee morale. A faster printer, desktop scanners, keyboard and mouse refreshes even a new smart phone, can all go a long way to help employees be more productive and who doesn’t like new stuff? Your users will be happy that you were thinking of them and their job quality with regards to IT.
Surplus Budgets can be a great place to invest into pilot programs that you may or may not otherwise be open to. Often Pilot Programs get scratched from annual budgets due to the risk to their success rate. Some ideas for pilot programs that would fit any surplus budget include:
- Tablet Computing Initiatives
- Mobile Computing Initiatives
- Telecommuting Initiatives
- Video Conferencing Trials/Testing
- Cloud Based Initiatives
Similar to the Nice to Have’s Category Redundancy Upgrades are a great way to spend surplus budget. Redundancy Upgrades are equipment or services that will give you more flexibility in those “just in case” scenarios. An additional Internet connection. A failover firewall or an extra switch. A few new laptops/desktops. Extra virtual hosts or SAN’s. Each of these may go a long way in the case of an emergency or failed equipment. Surplus budget is a great way to prepare for the events we all hope never occur but sometimes do.
Save for a Rainy Day
Just as our grandparents used to say, “Save it for a rainy day!” Depending on how your company does budgeting and its policies, you may be able to roll over your surplus into next year’s budget or sock it away for unforeseen circumstances. Talk with your accounting department and see if you can save some money away!
Regardless of the amount of money you have left over at the end of the year, budget surpluses can ALWAYS be put to good use. If you would like some additional ideas, check with an ISOutsource consultant. We would be more than happy to help you invest in the most effective manner possible!