6 Questions You Should Ask Before Preparing an IT Budget
Every individual who is working as a solution expert in Information Technology would be referring IT budget as the project proposal. If you are opting for managed IT consulting service, then make a budget first. Knowing the below facts would help us make a budget that enables us to win the projects. There is IT service providers who offer customized IT Consulting Services .
What is to be included?
There are several aspects that would all help the budget evaluator to come up to the final number. Infrastructure like the systems and network establishment, both on-premise and on the cloud, manpower required both permanent and contract, the term of the project with the buffer and reasons for the buffer, the resource adaptability, the resource training cost, resource hiring cost and to this list would get added with a few other components that would be specific to the project. These additional components would come into the light once the evaluation starts.
Why is it required?
With the 20-80 percent investment style, with client releasing partial amounts for the project completion, the service providers should raise funds and hence this budgeting system would help to drive in funds from multiple sources. Though the bank loans are applied, part by part releases could be requested so that money is not wasted or used upon unwanted things. Also, when the expenses are clearly stated on paper, it becomes easy for the bankers to approve loans. Also, this sort of budgeting would help plan phase by phase the activities that could be planned out of the amount released by clients and banks.
With a good budget, approvals would be easily done, work gets completed faster than planned, resources get excited and would try new solutions that are cost-effective and the list of benefits would continue.
Who should be doing it?
Than a one-man army by the project manager alone, many in-house service experts should sit together from hiring, training, infrastructure and operations departments, get involved in the discussions conducted right from the inception of the project idea to the stage of winning leads, for personal projects, or for winning the outsourced project from the client. Teamwork would always have a better result than a one man army style of working.
How to prepare?
While internet could provide you templates, formats and latest numbers on various line items that are listed down by you for including in the budget, you should always leverage the knowledge and experience of senior people in the organization as there have seen wins and losses, reasons for the same when their peers or managers or subordinates have been doing the budgeting task in the past. While samples would give you the trend or forecast into the future, the correctness of these numbers should be evaluated by the in-house experts whom you should always engage in the brainstorming sessions.
When to start and close?
There is never a particular start and end point of making the budget since the iterations would always happen depending on the budget, infrastructure, and resources that the client could allocate for the completion of the project of their interest. So, every iteration has to be properly documented so that we do not fail to extend our support or remove certain services so as to make the project budget as a win-win solution for both the parties.
Does it need modifications?
Even before you submit the budget to the client, it is always important that you revisit the four questions of what, why, who and how so that you do not miss any line items from including in the budget.