One constant in business that was true far before technology took over was the need to keep costs down and profits up. No matter how far we advance that basic principle still holds true.
The difference now is that Central Florida businesses can use their technology as a way to lower costs and improve their sales. But it takes knowing how to properly optimize your technology environment.
With business operations being so dependent on things like network maintenance, cybersecurity, and cloud infrastructure, it’s easy for IT costs to quickly get out of hand.
44% of businesses are planning to increase IT spending in 2020, which means that 56% are either trying to lower it or keep it the same.
The struggle is the need to stay competitive and also safeguard against a cybersecurity incident, while not spending more than you need to.
It doesn’t have to be an “either or” choice, you can keep up technologically with others in your industry and lower your tech costs at the same time.
How to Stay Digitally Advanced While Also Reducing Your IT Costs
Here are several ways to save money without sacrificing the quality of your IT environment.
Review Your Technology Bills
You may be surprised at hidden savings you can find when reviewing your ISP, phone, or mobile service bills.
You want to make sure you’re not paying for anything that you’re not using, and also try asking your ISP if there is a way you can lower your bill. Sometimes, just asking can make you aware of ways to save that you didn’t know about.
Check Product Licenses
Check out your product licenses for applications like Microsoft 365 to make sure you’re not overpaying. Two areas of savings when it comes to your application subscriptions are:
- Moving down a level in your subscription if you’re not using all the features of the higher priced plan.
- Removing users that are no longer at your company but weren’t taken off your subscription.
Become a Paperless Office
Going paperless is not only good for the environment, it’s also a way that technology can be deployed to lower manual costs. The costs for managing paper documents include:
- Cost of paper
- Cost of ink
- Cost of filing space
- Cost of employee time
The estimated cost just for paper for each employee annually is $80. And as much as 50% of office space is devoted to filing and storage.
Digital signature solutions are low cost and negate the need to print out contracts and other documents needing a signed authorization. Storing all your documents in digital format can mean a significant cost savings on material, labor, and office space.
Dig Deep into Your Recurring Bills
Review every bill and dig deep to ensure you understand what it relates to and why you’re paying it. Too often, we see companies pay for services they once used but aren’t sure if they’re still using. They continue to pay for the service every month for fear it will break something if they don’t.
Consolidate Your Cloud Services
The average employee uses 8 different SaaS (Software as a Service) applications to do their jobs. Those subscription costs can quickly add up and bloat your budget.
Companies often find when doing a cloud streamlining that they’re using two or more different tools with the same capabilities.
For example, a company using Microsoft 365 just for email and the Office programs, may also be paying for Zoom for video conferencing and Box for cloud storage. By fully using all the features of Microsoft 365 (which includes video conferencing through Teams and storage with OneDrive and SharePoint) they could eliminate those two other services.
Use Remote Workers
One thing the pandemic-related lockdowns did was show businesses what was possible when using a remote workforce.
When safeguards like a VPN and secure cloud sign-on policies are in place, many types of businesses (or departments within them) can be run just as easily from employee homes as they can from an office.
Using full or part-time remote workers at your Orlando area company offers the following benefits:
- Cost savings of approximately $10,000 per employee per year
- Higher productivity
- Fewer sick/personal days taken
- Lower office utility costs
- Ability to hire talent from anywhere in the world
If you have just eight employees handling manual processes that take each one an hour per day, that adds up to a whole other 40-hour/week employee.
You can reduce the need to hire more employees before you’re ready and free your staff from manual processes by using your technology to automate processes, such as sending a new web lead directly into your sales CRM.
By integrating your technology and automating, you can share data and commands that eliminate manual data entry and the need to send notifications or follow up emails manually.
Upgrade to a Cloud-based Phone System
If you’re still hanging onto a land-line based phone system, you’re overpaying for your phone costs. You’re also in a bind when it comes to having to vacate your office and have employees work from home for any reason (pandemic, hurricane, etc.).
VoIP phone systems offer more features than landline phones (like voicemail transcription to email) and cost much less.
Companies using VoIP save on:
- No setup cost
- No ongoing hardware maintenance cost
- Lower international & local calls
- Lower monthly bill
Switch to Virtual Desktops
One of the big ticket items when it comes to your IT environment is when its time to buy a new employee workstation. You can reduce this cost by using virtualization, like the Windows Virtual Desktop.
A virtual desktop hosts your employee computer files in a cloud-based environment (operating system, files, software, settings, etc.). This means that the hardware you purchase to allow employees to access their virtual desktop can be cheaper and doesn’t need to have the same storage or processing specs.
Another bonus is that virtual desktops make moving from office to at home work simple because employees can log into their desktop from any device.
Work with C Solutions to Lower Tech Costs While Staying Digitally Advanced
C Solutions can help your business reduce your technology costs while ensuring your infrastructure stays robust and your company stays competitive.
Schedule a free technology consultation today! Call 407-536-8381 or reach us online.