Inconsistent IT Costs
When we begin a new working relationship with a business or organization, we always ask why they are leaving their current IT provider. One of the most common responses that we get is that they never knew what their IT costs were going to be. The invoices were complicated, and they were constantly being hit with surprise invoices. This can be frustrating when you are running a business and trying to maintain margin.
Responding to Feedback
Our focus on eliminating unplanned expenses started with those conversations. We are not perfect at this but have made some good strides in that direction. We started first with feedback around our invoicing process. They were too complicated! With that feedback we simplified our offering. Instead of a menu item of choices, our standard invoice has one or two line items around the number of users on your network and another line item for your Microsoft 365 subscriptions. Recurring monthly costs are easy to budget around, it’s the unplanned hardware expenses that seem to really sneak up and break the bank. Enter the budgeting process…
Proactive IT Budgeting
In Q3 of each year our account managers create budget projections based on age of hardware and any upcoming projects a customer might have coming up. For example, if Company A has 30 workstations of varying ages, 2 network switches and 3 servers, we look at the useful lifespan of a workstation (48 months) and of infrastructure gear like the switches and servers (60 months). We then take a map of the next year and drop replacement hardware into each quarter. For example, if there are 16 workstations that need to be replaced in the upcoming year and the customer wants to cash flow the replacements versus a hardware lease, we’ll budget 4 workstations in each quarter. The end result is a collaborative process where the hardware gets replaced before it’s allowed to fail and cause unwanted downtime, and the expenses are planned and budgeted for.
Does This Resonate with You?
If you are experiencing the frustration of surprise IT invoices and want the stability of a mature budgeting process, please give us a call.
With an undergraduate degree in Applied Management, a graduate degree in Business Administration and as a doctoral candidate in Organizational Psychology, let’s just say that business and leadership are Wil’s passions! He is also a small business owner who understands the rigors and joys of business building.