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End of Year: How to Save over 20% on your IT Expenses

Merry Christmas from WJP Enterprises! We hope that you are having a great holiday season and are getting to spend a little extra quality time with the ones you love. happy-new-year-keyboard-100554215-primary.idge
But as we near the end of the year, there’s still business left to handle in 2015. Businesses are always looking to increase efficiency at lower cost, and if your accounting is based on the calendar year, you may be thinking about how to reduce your tax liability. Here are a few ideas on how to do that with your IT expenses.
The simplest method is just to prepay some of next year’s expenses this year, which can effectively save anywhere from 20%-40% on those expenses.
     If you are currently on a subscription service– such as Backup/Continuity, Hosted Email, Office 365, Antivirus, Managed Service– just request that we pre-invoice you. We can pre-invoice you anywhere from one to twelve months in advance for any of these services. The more months you pre-pay, the lower your tax liability.
     Are you considering upgrading some of your computers? The end of year sales that are available can be very attractive discounts as manufacturers try to cash in on the buying atmosphere of the holidays. But check with us before buying a new computer; many of the systems are geared for home usage, and you’ll want us to make sure you’re purchasing something that fits will within your network. Many times a simple $99 upgrade from Windows Home to Professional is all that’s needed; but sometimes the changes necessary to use home computer in a business environment are not economical, even at a great price for the original computer.
          (Do you need to upgrade a computer or two? Check our blog post for guidelines on why it may be time.)
     What if you need new computers but are too busy at work right now? We can also pre-invoice you for hardware, that we don’t install until after the new year. Same thing with monitors, printers, network switches, routers, or even software.
     All your systems are up to date? Great! But there’s still a tax-saving option for you: ask us to pre-invoice you for labor. You can invest in a “bucket of hours” using 2015 pre-tax dollars, and use the hours next year. The hours never expire, and can be used anytime.
Of course, you should check with your tax advisor about how any of the above will affect your taxes.

NEXT STEPS

Everyone knows that technology continues change and does so at an increasing rate. Here are some things to consider for the new year as you look to increase the efficiency of IT operations.
  • As mentioned above, do you need to upgrade workstations? Take a survey of your workstations; how many are older than 3 years? 4 years? You’ll want to replace them in 2016; otherwise, they’ll be costing you money.
  • What about your server? Trying to stretch the use of a server past 5 years is probably not a good financial choice. Let us help you figure it out.
  • Don’t worry about a backup strategy; you need to have a business continuity strategy (which, of course, includes backing up.) Knowing you have a backup is good. Knowing how long it will take to get back operating again after a disaster, or how you’ll work through it, is better.
  • The “As A Service” paradigm continues to expand. By subscribing to services like Business Continuity, Antivirus, Office 365, Monitoring/Management, and more, you can reduce capital expenses, and become more flexible with paying for services and licenses. Pay for just what you need, even if that changes seasonally– or for whatever reason– during the year.
  • There’s about another six months to upgrade for free to Windows 10. You should take advantage of the free upgrade for any computer you’ve purchased in the last two years, but don’t jump too soon. We can help you ensure that the applications necessary for your business are compatible and working well in Windows 10. Checking this compatibility with Windows 10 should be done as early in 2016 as possible, so that you can stay on top of vendors to ensure they get the issues address. (Some vendors will address this by releasing new versions rather than updating existing versions.) Windows 10 really deserves a company strategy to implement. File server OS, workstation OSes, applications, peripherals (printers, copiers, etc.), need to all be checked to make sure everything will work together.

Posted in: Tech Tips for Business Owners

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