Tough times, is it time for some IT house keeping?

Tough times, is it time for some IT house keeping_

Well, not that we need another reminder, but times are certainly tough, and they are changing pretty significantly on the business landscape. Not in just the way we transact business, but also the way we conduct business. WFH apparently is a big part of how we are going to be conducting business for the foreseeable future as businesses are seeing it as a means to gain efficiencies, reduce costs and keep their people safe. At this moment, businesses are getting plans together on what that’s going to look like and how they are going to continue to drive revenue production, while staying profitable.

Even with the best of plans, you have to have a relatively seamless way of implementing those plans, which means you must know where you are currently spending your money and have an idea of the implications around it if you change it. Since Wired Networks is focused on IT spend, we are going to identify the areas that we see as opportunities for savings, and significant savings at that in your IT Spend, while getting your ducks in a row so you can implement the impending changes to come.

Not surprisingly, for most IT organizations right behind personnel costs, are network/communication costs. First gathering details on your services, contract end dates, auto-renewal notifications, downsize clauses, etc., these are all areas that need to be documented and kept up-to-date. There are some very key ways in which organizations are able to save significantly on their telecom expenses. It’s not only benchmarking your hard dollar costs that we are talking about here, but even auditing the taxes and fees is a potential area for savings. As you are likely aware, SD-WAN is allowing organizations to drive efficiencies and recognize cost savings with migration from MPLS to Internet services. Not to suggest that MPLS doesn’t have a place in the world, but with the downsizing of office infrastructure in some situations, there is going to be even more opportunity for savings from dedicated services to broadband backed by 4G LTE Advanced or 5G where available. The truth is a book can be written on this topic alone, so we highly recommend you get with an expert, like Wired Networks, to address this because while you have the understanding of what needs to be done, it’s the process of getting it done that takes the most time (which is precious) and where the true art is here.

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Mobility literally seems to change daily, and if you haven’t looked at your opportunity for savings here in a while (1yr plus), there’s likely a chance for you to optimize your spend and identify areas of waste such as devices that have zero usage. This is a common issue for organizations that are growing quickly or contracting quickly and even with the best of intentions items get lost in the mix. Let a professional identify areas for improvement, which tends to be on average 20-30% in hard dollar cost savings.

A less discussed issue, but more so of late is that of Shadow IT. For the sake of speed, business units have been provided budgets for software applications such as sourcing a CRM, like Salesforce or Microsoft Dynamics. They also are purchasing collaboration tools such as Slack or Microsoft Teams. While this approach is speedy, it can and likely will lead to waste and inefficiency due to overlapping licenses, zero usage licenses and inability to take advantage of volume savings across the same apps in different business units. There are applications out there that will not only tell you where the waste is, but it will also provide alerts when licenses are renewing, when licenses aren’t being used and centralizes the spend management into a single repository, so this doesn’t spin out of control again for your company. Savings that can be had here is north of 25% per engagement with on-going spend management savings around 10% monthly.

Lastly, for IT teams that are leveraging public cloud, there are very sophisticated applications that will identify overspend and opportunities for savings. Some will even take it a step further and make the changes on your team’s behalf with your approvals. As you might already know, Azure, AWS, Google Cloud, VMWare, Rackspace and others are relatively complex to administer and require a very high level of knowledge in order to optimize the spend accordingly. In most cases, we have found most entities are saving in the 25-30% range on their monthly spend which in our book is rather significant. This is another case, where it’s one thing to identify the potential for waste, but it’s a whole other ballgame to administer the changes without disrupting the production environment of your entity. Make sure you get the right partner here that has the best practices identified and can either administer them for you or give you the keys and processes in order to make the changes yourself.

I think we can all agree that change is here. An audit of your spend, has the basic inherent effect of allowing your team to get their arms around your inventory of services, who those services are with, when they end and how much you are paying for them. The benefit of going through this exercise for just about every entity is you will inherently find waste, which is always beneficial, but for some entities no time more than now. The beauty of this is many cases you won’t have to spend a dime, and if you do have to spend something you will have a guaranteed minimum of savings as a result that will pay for out of pocket expenses many times over.

Our approach to this is to bring the best of breed partners to complement our 12+ years in the IT business to assist your team and make this a simple, one-stop approach to all of the above. If that makes sense to you, please get in touch with us and we’ll show you how it works. We keep it very simple so your team can continue to do what they do.

Stay safe out there and be ready to hit the ground running, because this won’t last forever.

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