Aussie businesses being “hoodwinked” on IT spend

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Australian businesses are being hoodwinked into spending up to 50 percent too much on IT infrastructure due to poor technical knowledge and taking advice carte blanche, Bruce McCurdy, CEO at Brisbane reseller Clariti has claimed.

McCurdy said businesses had approved tens of thousands of dollars on hardware and software without truly understanding if it represented value for money or met their business needs.

He said customers are generally over-budgeting on IT spends, often aren't utilising their existing IT infrastructure to its full potential, and are unaware that “they had the functionality sitting there”.

“Around 60 to 70 percent of our customers at varying degrees don't realise what they've got within their grasp--what they've already bought. Office 97 had over 4000 [functions], most people used only 20,” he said.

McCurdy provided an example of the Microsoft Windows Server 2000 operating system, saying a lot of customers haven't explored what's inside the product.

“They haven't explored what they've got now--they might realise it's already in their existing OS [when they move to upgrade],” he said. “On average most Australian companies spend at least 30 to 50 percent too much on their IT infrastructure and systems. It is important to realise that IT is a business enabler--not a business panacea.”

According to McCurdy, businesses that wanted to assess their IT needs should better understand the business requirements; get informed about the system they're looking at and specifically what it can do; properly scope the required outcome on the spend; align IT investment with business goals; and hold the IT company accountable for providing the right infrastructure.

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