IT budget

The Essential IT Budgeting Checklist

When planning your IT budget, you have to separate what’s essential and what’s not. But with so many priorities, planning on what to spend for IT can get complex.

Don’t worry. There’s good news.

With a little elbow grease, you can streamline your budget so that it works for you now and in the future by including the essentials. Here are some must-have elements to include in your budget and best practices to keep your IT budget streamlined and functional:

  1. Track Spending Year-Round

From recurring costs to new hire training, it’s important to track every cost that impacts your IT budget. By tracking your IT spending year-round, you can have better insight on where your IT budget utilization stands. This helps you to plan for future projects more accurately.

Related: Grow Your Executive Team with vCIO Services

  1. Categorize Your Costs

It’s essential to break down your costs by categories so you can quickly identify which areas account for the greatest expense in your IT budget. Take the time to highlight categories and individual expenses that are major priorities to your operations.

When you categorize your IT expenses, you create a more overall functional and effective IT budget.

  1. Prepare for Miscellaneous Expenses

Accommodate for the “rainy days” by having an emergency budget. This would be something you can tap in the event something fails or otherwise goes wrong. Allocate for miscellaneous expenses in advance so you don’t go over your IT budget. Preparing for these unexpected costs also ensures that you’re not stuck trying to figure out how to cover a necessary (but unexpected) expense.

  1. Consider Risk

With the prevalence of data breaches, today’s modern enterprises are investing in cybersecurity and cloud services to help mitigate against and thwart potential risks. It’s wise to consider risk and include spending for disaster recovery and backup of your devices and data. This may include colocation services, licenses and software, and business continuity services to keep your business up and running in the event of a data breach.

Related: How an IT Consultant Can Change Your Business

You also want to include spending for preventative measures and maintenance, such as email and web filtering, ongoing training for phishing attacks, and other proactive measures to avoid data breaches. Be sure to account for necessary IT audits and functionality testing.

By planning for these expenses, you can lower risk and reduce data breach-related expenses over time.

  1. Switch from CAPEX to OPEX

Technology changes quickly.

It’s really important to invest in the best technology to help your business grow. But it’s important to spend wisely too – instead of purchasing all of your devices with CAPEX, consider switching to a more predictable OPEX model. You can use modern, up-to-date cloud services that cut maintenance and management costs to create a more modern and predictable budget.

  1. Use a Calendar

If you want to track your IT spending year-round, it’s essential to have a calendar. A calendar not only facilitates transparency but it also makes it easy for everyone in the organization to see the time schedule for planned purchases.

  1. Account for Modern Working Methods

More employees are telecommuting and working remotely. You should account for a change in working methods. Consider covering expenses of facilitating modern ways of working, including expenses for flexible work applications, mobile hardware, and cloud services to support remote workers. In short, keep an open mind to how these new mobile costs will affect your IT budget.

They help your organization stay competitive and adaptable to change.

Related: Are You Asking the Wrong Questions about Your IT Budget?

KJ Helps You Optimize Your IT Budget

Keeping your IT budget functional and streamlined is possible when you have a plan. By using this checklist, you can ensure that you’re not overspending. It also helps to ensure you are getting the necessary products and services to keep your enterprise operational and profitable.

The team at KJ always makes sure to go above and beyond with everything we do. Of course, that includes helping your organization with crafting the perfect IT budget for your needs.

If you’re looking for guidance on where to start or how to make your IT budget better, reach out to us. We’re always open to helping you out.