With the end of the year looming, we know a lot of business owners and executives will be setting budgets and priorities for 2019. And if this year is like every other in recent memory, a lot of you will be wondering how much you should set aside for technology.

Most of the small and medium-sized companies we work with have some kind of IT budget, but the figures they have might not be even remotely realistic. To be fair, a lot of them know their numbers aren’t reliable, even if they couldn’t guess in which direction. For the most part, they are simply trying to make a vague estimate of what they should plan on spending for computers, software, mobile devices, and so on.

If you are in the same boat and have a 2019 IT budget that you don’t have much confidence in, this is the perfect time to improve your forecasting. Let’s look at some of the reasons you shouldn’t start the New Year without a good idea of how much you’ll spend on technology…

Unexpected Tech Expenses and Repairs are Usually the Biggest
When a business doesn’t have an accurate IT budget, it’s generally a sign they haven’t been thinking ahead in terms of repairs, replacements, and upgrades. That, in turn, suggests that they will likely find themselves paying for emergency service and improvements at the last minute. Unfortunately, those kinds of costs tend to be the highest.

You Should Have a Smart Upgrade Plan in Place
Do you have a plan for upgrading apps and equipment, or do you simply spend money when you see something you think you could use in your company – or worse when a salesperson recommends it to you? It’s amazing how many businesses we see wasting money because they don’t have a smart upgrade plan in place that takes them from one generation of tech to the next.

You Could Save Money with Subscriptions
Speaking of upgrades, you don’t always have to budget for big pieces of equipment or expensive software suites to get new features or performance improvements. That’s because there are subscription services available (particularly through the cloud) allowing you to trade periodic version improvements for monthly subscriptions to the packages you need. By making that kind of switch you get better tech and a more predictable IT budget.

Overlap and Waste are Common in Small Businesses
If you haven’t worked with an IT vendor who helps you to look through your ongoing expenses, then it’s entirely possible you are paying for multiple devices or software packages that essentially do the same thing. You might even be shelling out money for services you don’t use at all. These kinds of issues are common in small businesses. A good IT advisor can help you waste and overlap.

You Want Your IT Strategy to Match Your Business Strategy
The IT budget you set for 2019 should reflect your overall business goals. It might be a good time for you to invest in new workstations, for example, or to divert funds to other areas of your company. And of course, if you’re launching new products or initiatives, you might need to update your technology so you can take advantage of fresh revenue streams. The key is to ensure your IT budget and bigger business plan are working in alignment with one another.

Is Your IT Vendor Looking Out for Your Budget?
The New Year has almost arrived and you don’t want to face 2019 with an incomplete budget or business plan. Why not contact the technology consulting experts at Fantastic IT in Southern California today? We can show you how easy it is to get a grip on spending and planning for an important part of your business.