Much of IT Business Edge's content on achieving IT cost savings involves large, likely multi-year projects such as virtualizing data centers, switching to a service-oriented architecture to promote reuse of Web services, or using business process management to streamline business processes. The same is true for other tech sites as well.
But coming off a recession, many CIOs (and their CFOs and CEOs) are looking for quicker cost cuts. According to a recent Gartner report, CEOs will retain a "recession era mentality" for the next five years, which means they will expect IT investments to save the company money. To meet this objective, Gartner is advising CIOs to eliminate any non-strategic or underperforming assets, to avoid investments that could result in "economic shock" and to "finance future IT projects from the cost savings obtained in other parts of operations."
Sometimes simple ideas can result in savings that free up funds for more ambitious projects. IT Business Edge blogger Paul Mah recently offered 10 ways IT can save money for SMBs, a list of ideas that will work for most larger organizations as well.
And check out the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay, which expects to save money on printing costs by switching the default font on its e-mail system from Arial to Century Gothic. Diane Blohowiak, the school's director of computing. told Wisconsin Public Radio the new font uses about 30 percent less ink than the previous one. Considering that the cost of printer ink works out to a whopping $10,000 per gallon, the move could result in a fairly significant savings.
As a bonus, the change should also help the environment. Blohowiak says it's part of a five-year plan to adapt eco-friendly strategies. IT Business Edge's Knowledge Network offers more tips on saving money by going green, including a calculator for figuring out savings related to paper reduction.
Another bit of advice from Gartner: IT can win business fans by improving an organization's ability to accurately view its operational costs. Many CIOs see increased regulatory pressure as a positive influence on IT and the business, as seen by results of a recent poll conducted in conjunction with the MidMarket CIO Forum. Thirty percent of respondents said data governance would be a much higher priority in 2010, while another 37 percent said it would be a somewhat higher priority. Forty-one percent of respondents said compliance issues had a positive impact on the business and IT, while an equal number described compliance as a mixed bag of good and ill. The remaining 18 percent were more negative toward compliance.