How to manage IT costs in your small business

Managing IT costs effectively is crucial for small businesses with budget constraints. Here are some strategies to help you focus your IT spending so that your business gets the most benefit from it’s IT investments.

Prioritise needs

Understand what you hope to achieve with the business so you can identify the essential IT requirements. This does not have to be complicated and can be as simple as upgrading hardware to increase productivity, improving data security and using cloud technologies to enhance flexible working. Focus on tools and technologies that directly contribute to your business objectives so you can allocate resources efficiently.

Track your spending

Keep a record of your recurring IT costs such as outsourced IT support, software licensing and website hosting and management. Keep contact details of your IT vendors and log the amount and frequency with which you pay them, any associated agreed service levels you have in place and the duration of your contract. A lot of contracts auto-renew so understand your renewal terms and notice periods, you can then set a reminder to review them before being tied into another long-term contract.  Keeping track of IT spending makes it easier to set budgets going forward but remember to include a contingency as factors out of your control, like hardware failing, may arise despite careful planning. 

Cloud services

Consider leveraging cloud services for storage, software, and infrastructure. Cloud solutions often allow you to pay for what you use, reducing the need for significant upfront investments. A good example is Microsoft 365 office that is a cost-effective way to run your business and comes with a host of benefits that enables your business to work efficiently, flexibly and enables you to work collaboratively in new and creative ways.

Open source software

Explore open-source software alternatives. Many open-source solutions offer robust features and are free to use. Popular examples include Linux operating systems, LibreOffice for office productivity, and GIMP for graphic design.


Use virtualisation technologies to maximize server efficiency. Virtualization allows you to run multiple virtual machines on a single physical server, reducing hardware costs and energy consumption.


Consider outsourcing certain IT functions to specialised service providers. At Adept IT Solutions we provide IT support to small businesses, contact us for more details. This can be more cost-effective than hiring in-house staff for tasks like technical support, cybersecurity, or system maintenance.

Energy efficiency

Optimise energy usage by selecting energy-efficient hardware and adopting practices like turning off devices when not in use. This includes processors, memory modules, and hard drives designed to operate on lower power levels without reducing performance. Energy-efficient hardware components not only reduce energy consumption but also generate less heat, requiring less energy-intensive cooling solutions. This not only reduces costs but also aligns with environmental sustainability.

BYOD (Bring Your Own Device)

Allow employees to use their own devices for work when possible. This can lower the need for purchasing and maintaining company-owned devices. If you need advice on how to set up IT security for computers used at home by your employees, to ensure company data is protected, please get in touch.

Training and cross-training

Invest in training for existing employees to handle multiple IT roles. Cross-training can ensure that you have a versatile team capable of managing different aspects of your IT infrastructure without the need for specialised hires.

Flexible licensing

Choose flexible licensing models that offer subscription-based models or scalable licensing options based on the number of users, which can be more cost-effective for small businesses.

Regular audits

Conduct regular reviews of your IT costs to identify areas where costs can be optimised. Assess whether existing tools and services are still meeting your business needs or if there are more cost-effective alternatives available.

Security measures

Implement proactive cybersecurity measures to avoid potential financial losses due to data breaches or system downtime. Preventive measures are often more cost-effective than dealing with the aftermath of a security incident.

Long-term planning

Develop a long-term IT strategy that aligns with your business goals. This allows you to make informed decisions about technology investments and avoid unnecessary expenses.

Remember, IT costs are both an expense and an investment. Having the right technology can improve efficiency and profitability of your business. Your IT strategy should always be aligned with your business goals and spending should be appropriate to the needs of your company vision. If you would like advice on how to get the best benefit your business IT investments please contact us.