Many companies find it challenging to figure out the optimal spend on IT infrastructure. If you do not spend enough, then you are losing productivity due to downtime and system inefficiencies. However, it is also easy to waste money on an expensive solution that is unnecessary for your business.
Consider backup solutions: A business could spend $1500 on a low end backup system, which would take nearly a day to recover everything in the event of a crash. Or, they could choose a $50,000 system that would have almost no downtime. However, the optimal solution for them might be a mid-level solution that costs around $10,000 and provides less than 60 minutes of downtime.
The real challenge is that most IT professionals do not find the optimal solution for the business, because they do not understand the business priorities. First, they present the “perfect” solution, which is too expensive for most businesses. Then, they offer the “cheap” solution, which often does not properly mitigate risks for a business.
Here is how can you find the optimal spend for IT investments:
- Be clear on business priorities - Make sure your IT team understands your business priorities. For example, it may not be devastating for your servers to be down for 10 minutes in any given month, but an hour would seriously impact your business.
- Map out options - As you look at any significant IT investments, and even company policies around buying new hardware, be sure that your IT team is providing you with different options, including mid-range solutions. These often provide most of the benefits of the high-end solutions at a fraction of the cost.
- Choose based on cost vs. performance - Work with your IT team to identify which solution meets your risk tolerance and has a good balance of cost versus performance for your business.
When you plan and communicate effectively with your IT team around IT investments, you can make optimal decisions on what IT solutions best meet your business and budget needs.
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