IT is now a crucial to most businesses. It impacts on almost everything that we do, from communicating to sales presentations to stock control to transaction processing. IT is used because it brings significant benefits to businesses, but it is also a business cost. In many businesses, it is a cost that is increasing.
- Shop Around
Don’t use the same IT providers year after year without spending some time going out to market to see what else is available. This applies to a range of equipment and services including mobile phone suppliers, computer suppliers, technical support providers, and more. Your current supplier or provider might still offer you the best deal, plus you have the benefit that they already know your systems and business, but you won’t know if savings can be made unless you check.
- Update Regularly And Spread Your Purchases
Slow and out-of-date computer equipment is frustrating for your team to use, and it affects productivity. It can also use up resources or money in terms of support and repair work. Computers and other IT equipment have a life cycle so make sure you replace equipment when it starts to become a burden. To limit the impact on cash flow it might be a good idea to spread your purchases throughout the year, rather than doing everything in one go. This will make it easier for your technical team to set up and install the new equipment too. Just make sure you are getting a good deal from your supplier, however, and are not being penalised for not buying in bulk.
- Embrace BYOD
BYOD stands for Bring Your Own Device. It is where you allow your members of staff to use their own mobile phone and tablet devices for work purposes. The main benefit is that you don’t have to spend money purchasing phones. You may also find that your employees prefer using their own devices, particularly if the reimbursement for business use is reasonable. In addition, you will also find that your employees are more engaged outside of working hours, which can help with productivity. The downsides are security and the fact that people are using their own phones in work, which will inevitably present distractions like personal text messages and social media accounts. For many businesses, however, the benefits outweigh these downsides.
- Use Free Software
Software created under Creative Commons licenses is becoming increasingly popular in businesses in Ireland and elsewhere in the world. Essentially this means software that is used for free. It is usually not owned by any company, and it is open source, so is developed by a community for the benefit of all. In many situations these prove more than satisfactory for normal business purposes. Examples include free word processors, spreadsheets, image editors, email systems, and CRM systems.
- Move To The Cloud
Before the cloud it was necessary for you to have physical computers on site. The cloud means this is no longer necessary. The specific applications of this technology are almost endless and include things like virtual desktops, software applications, and collaboration tools. The cloud saves you money in a number of different ways. Firstly the setup and maintenance costs are minimal and sometimes non-existent. This is because the cloud provider does this on your behalf. Secondly, it allows you to purchase SaaS instead of software applications. This stands for Software as a Service, and often works out more cost effective than traditional ways of buying software.
For more help or information on how to cut costs in your business please contact a member of the Gilroy Gannon team today.