DIY tips: How to cut costs and get more from your IT gear

Forget buying new tools; adjusting applications and resources can deliver results in a downturn

With tech budgets shrinking, network professionals are spending less time planning new purchases and more time trying to cut costs and squeeze more value out of existing IT resources.

"Cost reduction and cost containment is a priority, and this economic downturn is really a catalyst to become more efficient and better use the things we already have. If everything was rosy, we probably wouldn't be focusing so intensely on efficiencies right now," says Jake Seitz, enterprise architect at The First American Corp.

The Santa Ana, Calif.-based company established a task force to find the hidden gems amidst its current raft of software and high-tech tools, Seitz says. "We have a lot of disparate platforms and products, some of which have been a one-trick pony. We are reevaluating their capabilities and reusing them in different ways."

Seitz isn't alone. Many IT industry professionals realize they can find more uses for tools their company already owns and even kick off new initiatives without requesting any new funding. Here we've culled 10 ideas to consider.

Pool troubleshooting resources

Identifying areas in which staff can collaborate and more easily share information helps Brian Jones reduce manual efforts and improve response times when troubleshooting problems.

Jones, manager of research and network engineering at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University's Tech Communications Network Services unit in Blacksburg, says his group recently moved in-house, off-the-shelf and open source tools into one centralized location with the help of wiki software from Confluence -- which he had on hand prior to the downturn. The software lets the network engineering and operations teams access data, documentation and tools from one toolbar.

"This way staff has the documentation it needs to address the problem as well as the ability to launch the tools to resolve the issues from that same toolbar," Jones explains. "It has really cut down on the time it takes to find the resources you need in a situation and helps staff efforts."

Use SNMP to track power usage

With green computing initiatives top of mind for their potential cost savings, many IT departments are tasked with trying to find ways to capture the power consumption and then reduce it across the environment. Without new tools, that task might seem a bit daunting.

Shane Bordeau, senior regional manager of strategic accounts at network performance management vendor NetQoS, explains that IT managers can use SNMP Management Information Bases to monitor power consumption -- without spending a penny

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags open sourcevoipNetwork managementglobal recessioneconomic crisis

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Denise Dubie

Network World
Show Comments

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Luke Hill

MSI GT75 TITAN

I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Laura Johnston

MSI GS65 Stealth Thin

If you can afford the price tag, it is well worth the money. It out performs any other laptop I have tried for gaming, and the transportable design and incredible display also make it ideal for work.

Andrew Teoh

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

Touch screen visibility and operation was great and easy to navigate. Each menu and sub-menu was in an understandable order and category

Louise Coady

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

The printer was convenient, produced clear and vibrant images and was very easy to use

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?