All Posts By

Mark Nead

Your 2020 IT Budget: Hard and Soft Elements to Consider

By | Blog, Insight

The  IT landscape in all sizes of businesses continues to evolve to make operations easier. And let’s don’t forget revenue. That’s why you’re in business after all. Brands are leaning into the fact that IT is an asset, not a necessary evil. Business growth strategies drive companies of all sizes today and IT is a critical component, if not the leading asset in guiding them to greater revenue streams.

IT budgets should be reviewed periodically to ensure proper attribution to components as the business transitions. Additionally, the increase in cloud services and the decline of on-site data centers is altering the scope of hardware and software needs. There will still be the need for servers, security, storage, network infrastructure, employee equipment, and other components and these fundamentals need to be part of a 2020 IT budget.

At Calyx, we work with clients to ensure that they have the appropriate hard and soft IT elements that will support strategic efforts for sustainable growth. We help clients to customize the scope of their IT budget, costs, and necessary components to position their business to grow responsibly.

According to Calyx CEO, Jason Fordu, “Businesses need to adopt a top-down budgeting approach leading with strategic business objectives that can improve efficiency and revenue. Most people think in terms of apps when planning for a new year, but outdated server, security, storage and networking can bring a company down quickly and must be upgraded or replaced appropriately.”

The tech pros at Calyx also advise against keeping outdated software and hardware because of the potential for security risks. If they’re not upgraded, it will be nearly impossible to mitigate threats that come up.

Company size also plays a big part in hardware and software spend. Enterprises have more data infrastructure to monitor and will invest in more power/climate and telephony hardware. Mid-size companies will spend on mobile devices and tablets while smaller businesses will devote the lion’s share of their budget to employee laptops and desktops.

Top hardware considerations for 2020

  • The big data trend shows no signs of slowing down so companies need to accommodate the massive amount of data generated. Storage will be in high demand in 2020, especially object storage because of its ability to address large amounts of data from edge to cloud with query capability and custom metadata tagging.
  • Systems management. Efficient routing, network QoS and virtualization will be big in 2020 so the need for contracting the right systems management will be critical.
  • Load balancer. Another hardware component to consider is a load balancer to keep network traffic moving smoothly. It can move flow smoothly when there’s too much traffic for a server by moving it to other circuits.

Top software considerations for 2020

In 2020, enterprises will allocate a more significant percentage on database management, virtualization, and communications software. Mid-size companies will invest in business support apps and productivity software while the small business will spend their software budgets primarily on operating systems

  • Automation initiatives. Key software trends for 2020 include those initiatives dedicated to automation. This includes Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning designed to alleviate human chores in the workplace. The adoption of AI is expected to triple by 2021.
  • Replace outdated software. Outdated software such as Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2 is scheduled to come off support early in 2020 so appropriate upgrades need to occur.

Special considerations

Hardware and software investments differ according to company size. For example, large enterprises adopt emerging technologies quicker and will need a higher level of assistance in integrating technology innovations into their company. Smaller and mid-size companies require more guidance in security best practices and disaster recovery policies.

At Calyx, we work with our clients to help them identify the best options when it comes to upgrading infrastructure, updating disaster recovery plans, identifying security vulnerabilities and working to transform tech environments with upgrades and innovations.

2020 is here so let’s wrap this up. The biggest IT investments will occur with technology end-of-life, upgrades, and new initiatives to support business growth. Enterprise-level businesses already understand how tech can drive revenue and they are more receptive to new tech solutions such as AI to gain competitive advantage. Smaller businesses are more interested in investing in desktops and laptops for employees. Whatever your business size as well as the state of your current tech situation, Calyx can help you position for growth in 2020 and beyond.

Calyx is a 2019 NorthCoast 99 Award Winner

By | News

Calyx is proud to be recognized by ERC as one of 99 great Northeast Ohio workplaces for top talent. This is the second time in as many years that our organization has received the NorthCoast 99 Award.

NorthCoast 99 is an annual recognition program and event in its 21st year that honors 99 great Northeast Ohio workplaces for top talent. “More than a business award or event, NorthCoast 99 is a yearlong research project ERC established to help employers make a difference in the lives of people working and living in our 22-county region,” noted ERC senior vice president Carrie Morse, who has overseen the program for the last 17 years.

NorthCoast 99 winners participated in a rigorous application process that asked for detailed information on how their organization addresses top-performer attraction, development, and retention in five distinct areas: organizational strategy, policies, and communication; recruitment, selecting, and onboarding; employee well-being; employee engagement and development; and total rewards.

“We’re truly honored to be recognized by Northcoast 99 as one of the best places to work in Northeastern Ohio. We’ve been very intentional in developing a culture that promises both challenge and opportunity,” says Jason Fordu, CEO. “Our entire team deserves the acknowledgment, because they don’t settle for status quo. They’re always looking to create a better way. They make Calyx who we are.”

“We’re thrilled to recognize and celebrate this year’s NorthCoast 99 award winners! With unemployment at a 49-year-low, the benchmarks for attracting, engaging, and retaining employees are higher than ever. Year after year, winning organizations are raising the bar with increasingly progressive and groundbreaking HR practices and benefits that elevate the experience of their employees,” said Kelly Keefe, president of ERC.

The 2019 NorthCoast 99 Awards program is sponsored by Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield; CareerCurve; Cleveland Magazine; ERChealth; Gino’s Awards; Maloney + Novotny; Mark Wayner Creative; Meyers, Roman, Friedberg & Lewis; Oswald Companies; Staffing Solutions Enterprises; and Ultimate Software.

About Calyx

Calyx deploys enterprise IT solutions to small and mid-market businesses, delivering proven processes and the best technology and people to create greater efficiency, productivity, and profitability.

About ERC

Founded in 1920, ERC helps organizations make their workplaces great by providing expert people solutions that include training, consulting, research, and HR support services. ERC also sponsors the ERChealth insurance program in Ohio. Additional information about ERC and its services can be found at www.yourERC.com.

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