Does anyone outside of IT actually understand IT? However tough, business leaders must take the time to learn whether or not their IT teams operate efficiently, or if they waste time, money, and resources working on the wrong areas. The decision-making leaders of your company can reverse bad trends and improve the department’s operations if they explore these four common areas where IT might be wasting money and resources.
- Focusing Too Many Hours and Resources on IT Utilities
Email, telephones, and application servers keep daily operations functioning. However, they are all simply part of the cost of doing business, like electricity or printer paper. They are utilities, not core business services. Many internal IT departments focus a significant amount of resources, if not all, on keeping these utility services up and running, leaving little room for strategic initiatives. In many cases, it is far more effective and efficient to adopt third-party solutions to manage these utility services.
- Investing in Outdated or Misaligned Systems
Legacy systems may have gotten the organization to where it is today, but when was the last time leadership staff truly evaluated their performance? If those systems are outdated, or if they do not help the business reach its goals, they are a waste of money. If employees work on a network of software and tools that do not interface with each other and require constant attention from IT staff, it’s time to re-examine those tools.
- Treating Internal Resources as Though They Are “Free”
IT professionals are not cheap labor. They are highly-skilled, typically highly-paid employees; business leaders do well to remember that when making technology-related decisions and requests. Are high-level engineers spending time on high-level projects? Or do they troubleshoot simple problems day-in, day-out? While it may seem like an added expense to call in third-parties to handle low-level issues, their hourly fees are probably much lower than the “hourly” fee the company pays for an engineer who spends half of their day fixing PCs.
- Investing in the “Wrong” Technology
Many times, business leaders choose new technology because it’s touted as the latest-and-greatest solution on the market. They may hear that a competitor has adopted a certain solution, or they might have read great things about a particular tool. However, solutions that work for one organization are not necessarily the right choice for another. If decision makers do not evaluate technology based on whether or not that technology aligns with company goals and can help solve business problems, odds are they will always run the risk of making the wrong choice.
It’s easy to waste money in IT when business leaders don’t speak the language, but it’s critical to take the time to evaluate where the IT department spends its time and resources. Through proactive analysis, the leadership team can identify areas where resources could be better spent, refocusing their investment on carefully selected technologies, supporting strategic initiatives and they can allocate those resources for strategic initiatives, rather than basic technology functions.