Want vs. Need
Your servers need replacing, your software is ancient. Before starting that wrestling match with your CFO to justify a major technology spend, take a hard look at what tools and technologies in the marketplace may be available to you to augment existing, aging resources without discarding these investments wholesale or completely phasing in new chunks of technology.
Each company has its own way of personalizing its software and technology. Does your solutions provider allow you the freedom to do this on your own accord, or must your solution come with a pre-programmed management interface? In other words, in whose way are you working? How does this impact your technology spend? Simply put: adoption rates.
The faster people adjust to a new product or technology, the less money you invest in training, change management or changes to this pre-programmed interface. This will also assist in the external (outside of IT) perception of the success and intuitiveness of the IT department, which can impact, of course, how easily or how difficult you may find it to fund other major initiatives.
While the belts are loosening (though ever so slightly and slowly), it is important in your zeal to meet the pent-up demands you don't lose sight of lessons learned during the recession. These considerations can lead to making more solid fiscal decisions around technology and will also allow you to get the most out of your technology budget, regardless of its size.
John Wu is chief technology officer forRackmount.com, a division of PCW Microsystems, a provider of Rackmount servers, chassis and accessories. Wu can be reached at 516-997-5050.