You don’t need a management consultant to tell you that reducing costs and saving money is ideal for any business. For SMEs with limited capital, the need to take every chance they can get to cut costs is even more pressing. When cutting down on costs, businesses need to balance their priorities and do it right. Case in point: reducing spending on a department such as the IT department.
The IT department is a crucial support system responsible for business process improvement through relevant technologies that makes every other facet of your business run smoother and more efficiently. Reduce spending the right way by making your cost reduction strategy a business process improvement initiative at the same time. Check out these five ways to save money in your IT department while making it run more effectively.
Move to the cloud
We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again: Cloud computing takes your business to the next level. Cloud computing adds a new dimension to your IT department by providing platforms, softwares and infrastructures that would otherwise be more expensive and laborious to maintain using traditional methods. Instead, cloud allows your business to get exactly the services you need without having to constantly maintain and update.
Remove the redundancies
There are many forms of redundancy in IT departments. When it comes to backing up files across multiple platforms, alternate programs are important. In case of system-wide problems or emergencies, you must be able to distinguish the redundancies from the files your company really needs. For instance, instead of backing up every file in every computer in individual hard drives, curate and secure files as collective department files. Sort the files to remove redundancies and unnecessary files.
In the context of role/task redundancy, work with the HR in outlining the tasks and responsibilities of the people in the IT department. In line with this, hire people who are capable of multitasking and fulfilling different roles in the department.
Get contractors for your IT department
For small businesses, it might be more cost-efficient to work with contractors instead of hiring too many full-time employees for the IT department. Aside from having real-life experience on the job, contractors can help your company when it comes to tasks in the IT department that can be scheduled within a time-frame.
Reduce idle time and get more out of your employees. Tasks like repairs, installations, updates, organization and setup can be near-sourced or delegated to contractors to save money.
Don’t overspend on hardware and software
Businesses tend to overspend on software and hardware initially due to the misalignment of objectives and tasks. Before buying expensive, top-of-the-line workstations and servers, consider first what your business is really all about and if the added expenses can really help your employees to perform better and more efficiently. Why invest in sophisticated laptops when standard desktop PCs are more than enough?
Again, this is where the cloud comes in. Instead of buying high-end computers and programs, consider a cloud service for your needs. Some cloud services have minimal system requirements but do the job all the same. Software-as-a-service cloud business models also do not need to be updated and backed up every so often since the cloud service providers update the programs and back up your files automatically for the sake of system integrity.
Streamline your entire system every so often
Analyse your system and seek out areas where your IT department might be overspending. Make initiatives that address excessive power consumption and printing. It may be counterintuitive but sometimes you’ll need to upgrade to newer, more efficient computers, printers and other hardware in order to reap long-term benefits and savings. Streamline your system by removing inefficiencies and lapses in the processes.
Need more tips and suggestions in making your IT department run more efficiently? Download our free eBook, The IT Pillar, and find out what your business needs to do the harness your IT department’s full potential.