How to plan an IT budget

According to a recent survey, over 33% of organization’s IT budget is going towards innovation and business opportunity however many do not know how to plan an IT budget. Here are key points to consider.

The survey was conducted by CEB. Organizations must know what it spends on IT allowing them to create a clear IT budget for the coming year that will assist you to match IT to your business goals, give a true view of your IT costs and allow you to plan for major upcoming IT expenses.

Aligning your IT budget and with your business goals.

Looking to plan an IT budget? This is the foundation and driven by your business goals and business strategy.

Business example, if you coming is planning to grow and expand, you will need new hardware plus you will have to provide support and training. As your business grows, you also have to be aware of your current IT infrastructure limits and if it needs to be upgraded to support your company’s expansion.

Small or large, all organizations should be using a reliable, scalable and adaptable IT infrastructure.  Your IT department or IT consultant should have experience to make the process faster and more efficient.  It is important to also remember that your IT budget is a forecast and there should be room for an emergency situation.

Plan an IT budget to be simple

Keep it simple! Approach your IT budget aiming to build a complete picture of your technology costs by setting the scope of your IT budget, keeping accurate inventory and using the past as a guideline and what has been spent in the past on hardware, software and IT support.

Plan an IT budget and monitor your IT costs

Your IT budget is an important tool to help your business allocate funds and monitor spending. Your budget is set yearly however you should break down spending monthly. You need to include regular monthly costs like charges for IT support services, cloud services, internet connection and backups in addition to one-off expenses like new hardware.

Unfortunately, unexpected IT costs are not uncommon so do not under budget as an emergency may cause issues. If your IT costs exceed your predictions, you need to review with your management team or managed IT services provider as to why you are exceeding expectations.

At the end of your fiscal year, you need to review your IT budget performed and how it has performed. These findings are the baseline for your next budget so your business can focus on IT spending in the most important areas. Given how organizations have limited IT staff and budgets, you should engage your management team as well as IT consultants if possible.

With proper engagement from management and your IT department or IT consultant, you should be able to have a stable IT budget yearly with no to little surprises.

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