Written by Lori Thiessen

Whether you are an entrepreneur or part of the management team for a company, it is important to create a technology budget.  Planning for new technology hardware and replacing old hardware will help keep operating costs under control.

If you are part of a management team for a company, you may have a dedicated IT guru on staff. If you are an entrepreneur or part of a small company, it might be wise to hire an IT consultant. Either way, it is critical to figure out what you really need technologically speaking.

Though tech gadgets are super cool, they aren’t necessarily going to support your business more efficiently. In fact, they may eat up more profits than they make.

If you don’t have a business plan, create one.  This exercise will help you think about the nature of your business and what you need to have to serve your clients well.  It doesn’t need to be the latest and greatest technology, it just has to work.

Let me tell you a story.

My father-in-law decided to switch careers and open up a woodworking business a few years ago. He rushed out and bought a very fancy and expensive fax machine to receive orders.  Now, in my mind, this was a waste of money that could have been put towards other business infrastructure needs, like tools, materials, advertising etc. However, my father-in-law was keen to get the best fax machine available at the time.

This little story illustrates a couple of points: being careful about what you spend your start-up money on and if that technology will be truly needed.

There is an urge in many of us, I think, to get the fanciest and the best straight off in order to create a successful business.

The amount of technological gadgetry your business requires depends on what you do. If you are a graphic designer chances are you will need far more fancy tech stuff than someone well, like me.

My bare bones tech requirements are a computer with a decent amount of memory,  fast internet access and a cell phone.  My wish list shows that I would like a photocopier, scanner, fax machine, Blackberry, iPhone and a printer just for photographs.

I don’t buy this stuff because I really don’t need it right now. There are other things in which I need to invest start-up money. However, I keep my wish list handy and I keep my eye on the sales.

Q: Are you a compulsive consumer when it comes to tech gear? If so, why?

Thanks for dropping by and I’ll save your seat until next time!