‘Tis the season: PSL, pigskin and planning for 2020

‘Tis the season: pumpkin spice latte, fantasy football…and budgeting for the new fiscal year. We’ve entered that window of time when CIOs and CTOs create their 2020 IT wish lists, only to quickly realize their IT needs far outweigh their IT wants.

Sound familiar?

If you’re juggling competing priorities and limited resources, you’re not alone. Anticipating your company’s tech needs and making sure you’re efficiently investing your budget is both an art and a science. Partnering with a trusted IT consultant from budgeting through migration and implementation can help to not only boost your confidence that you’re spending your budget on the right solutions at the right time, but also take your IT strategy from whiteboard to reality.

Where to invest your IT dollars in 2020

Tech evolves at warp speed, and with so many solutions to choose from, it can be tough to know where to begin. A recent TechRepublic Premium poll shows IT managers’ chief budget planning concerns are interconnected, presenting a prioritization dilemma. More than half of the respondents view data security as their chief concern for 2020. Cloud services is a close second, with investing in internal hardware and software purchases rounding out the top three.

Source: TechRepublic.com

After identifying your company’s biggest or most immediate IT needs, it’s time to rank them. Start by asking yourself where your available resources – money, time and talent – can be most effective and most efficient. If the picture still doesn’t come into focus, it might be time to tap outside help. A fresh set of eyes can cut through the noise, helping you assess and plan appropriately for your most urgent IT needs.

Building your 2020 roadmap

Developing a technology roadmap based on your business goals and objectives is a great way to start determining your IT priorities. As part of this roadmap, it’s important to review your current technology applications with an eye toward evolving integrated solutions like Microsoft 365 that can reduce complexity while also reducing costs. Many clients find they can reduce their spending on third party applications like GoToMeeting, WebEx, Zoom and more as they adopt more of the Microsoft/Office 365 suite they already have as part of their current licensing.

Once you’ve clearly identified your budget priorities, it’s time to build a plan to actualize your 2020 tech goals. Let’s look at two important tools to help you get there: the cloud and SharePoint Online.

Cloud assessment

For better security, increased flexibility and more dynamic scalability, your 2020 plan likely includes evaluating a move to the cloud. You’re not alone. Louis Columbus sums up a LogicMonitor study in an article for Forbes.com and reports that by 2020:

  • 83% of enterprise workloads will be in the cloud
  • 41% of enterprise workloads will be run on public cloud platforms like Microsoft Azure, Amazon AWS and Google Cloud Platform
  • On-premise workloads will shrink to just 27% of all workloads

Embracing cloud innovation can help quell your biggest tech fears: security breaches, GDPR compliance and expiring data center contracts to name just a few. As you’re preparing for your company’s cloud migration, take time to assess your overall IT infrastructure. Develop a comprehensive and detailed project plan – with expert counsel, if necessary – and stay focused on the enormous ROI you’re delivering to your company.

SharePoint end of usage

With less than a year til the October 2020 end of extended support for SharePoint 2010, another key part of your IT roadmap may be migrating from on-premise to SharePoint Online (SPO) or adding SPO to your Office 365 portfolio. One of the most widely adopted tools on the market, SharePoint  Online offers unparalleled collaboration via Microsoft Teams while helping to drive up productivity and drive down costs.

But is the prospect of seamlessly migrating from on-premise to SharePoint Online keeping you awake at night? Breaking it down into manageable phases – planning, building, stabilization, deployment and validation – can help take the pressure off.

Ready, set, go!

Navigating your business to the forefront of technology isn’t easy, nor is it a DIY project. But taking a holistic approach to budget planning and working with a trusted tech partner to develop a strategy will save you money, ease your IT burden and ultimately, give you back some time—the most valuable commodity of all.

Interested in learning more about how cloud computing can streamline the way you do business? Listen to our webinar, “Embracing Cloud Innovation,” and get a free download of our presentation by visiting innovaconsulting.com/news/webinars/.

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