Forgotten Things You Need to Fit In Your IT Budget
We know it is difficult to properly budget for a company’s technology needs. You never know when hardware is going to break, or when an event like a natural disaster or a cyber security attack is going to destroy what you’ve built.
At Protek support we do our best to meet with our clients regularly to go over what expenses might be coming on the horizon. For example, when warranties will expire, or hardware seems to be on its way out due to errors and failures we are noticing behind the scenes. We know what it takes to make sure your network remains up and running properly.
There are a few things that many business owners fail to consider as they are planning their IT budget. Neglecting them could spell disaster for your company.
Security Awareness Training
The majority of cyber security breaches that occur in any type of organization are the result of human error. Whether someone clicked a link they shouldn’t have, or mistakenly given out personal information.
With cyber security awareness training, you can nip those problems in the bud by preventing these mistakes. So many people are simply unaware of different types of vulnerabilities and attacks. Helping them be more aware of some of the common pitfalls people come across goes a long way towards making sure it doesn’t happen in your company.
Make sure you put some cyber security training in your budget. It will probably be some of the best IT dollars you will spend.
Unfortunately, gone are the days that you purchase a software program for a certain amount, and you just own the software. In this situation, if you wanted to update to the latest version you would have to pay for it, but you could stay on the old version for as long as you want.
Most companies have now moved to a subscription model where you pay monthly or annually, but you get free updates to the latest version. Since this is more the norm, making sure you budget for this new shift will be important. You won’t be able to put off software upgrades anymore.
I know we all wish that hardware would just last forever. You may even think that machines used to last a lot longer than they do now. While that is definitely true, there are reasons for the shorter lifespan.
First, our devices do so much more work than they used to. We are requiring more resources and more multitasking from these devices, which makes the hardware become run down faster.
Secondly, technology is improving at a lightning fast pace. Computer specs that were great 4 years ago can seem completely obsolete compared to what is currently available. As the technology improves, the operating system and software asks more of the devices.
For desktops I would budget for replacements every 5 years or so. Laptops generally need to be replaced after 3 years.
Remote work tools
Last year, more than ever, companies found out that they need to plan ahead for work from home situations. The run on headsets and webcams alone should be enough to scare any business into making sure they have that equipment on hand.
As working from home continues to be the norm, it might be a good idea to start investing in work from home setups. These complete solutions should be configured and ready to go for anyone to grab and take home to work.
Budgeting for things like webcams and headsets along with secondary workstation hardware like desktops or laptops is now almost a required line item in your IT budget.
Along with security training, you may also need to invest in more ways to protect your critical company data from attackers. One of the best ways to protect this data is to enable 2-Factor Authentication on any service that will allow it.
For many services this will not cost anything additional, however some applications will require a 3rd party tool to help you get authenticated like Duo. Even if it is free, you may want to use something like Duo for it’s push notifications that allow you to login much more quickly than using a code that is generated.
Find out what services you use that offer it for free, and make note of those that do not. Then adjust your budget accordingly if you need to purchase a 3rd party authentication app.
Technology isn’t cheap, but it can really save you a lot of money in time and employee efficiency, so make sure you have all of the necessary expenses covered before you end up spending thousands fixing a problem you could have prevented.
Eric is the owner and CEO of Protek Support and is a CISSP (Certified Information Systems Security Professional). He graduated from Utah State University with a Bachelors of Science degree in Business with an emphasis in Information Technology (IT). He is an IT Services expert in a variety of technology related fields. Some of these fields include document management software/hardware, enterprise level networking and VoIP phone systems, as well as large scale software implementation projects and the setup of small business networks.