Information | Process | Technology

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Cost Reduction Consultancy 

IT costs money. IT consumes c. 7.5% - 8% of turnover in the average mid-sized UK enterprise, and as much as 11.5% of turnover in the finance sector.

Even in businesses with very high-efficiency, centralised IT systems and relatively low percentages of staff needing to use systems - such as in the large supermarket chains, IT still consumes 3% - 5% of turnover.

A major part of IT cost is in IT staff - especially support staff. It is common to see IT:Business staff ratios of 1:10 - so an enterprise of 500 productive business staff may easily find itself burdened with an IT department of 50 expensive IT professionals.

SBA founder Steve Burrows believes that high IT costs reflect inadequate IT direction and management.  IT costs are too high in most enterprises because the IT function is not in synergy with the business, leading to failed projects, wasted investments, overly complex systems and other causes of waste. Support costs are likewise too high because the IT leadership has not taken sufficient account of the cost of support in planning technology investment, and has not adequately considered the long term consequences of their decisions. The result is overly expensive IT, directly consuming net accounting profit. Steve Burrows believes that he can change this in almost any organisation, to reduce IT spend while improving the quality of IT service, by bringing the IT function and the business into synergy with each other and with the business objectives.

As evidence he points to JLA, part of Vanilla Group of which he was IT Director. JLA employs c. 350 people, the vast majority of whom have at least one dedicated computer, some have more than one, and JLA has more PCs than people. Around a third of JLA's PCs are mobile - laptops / notebooks used by field-based staff and consequently much hard to support than the PCs of office-based staff. JLA operates several major "enterprise" systems - highly complex and very expensive software systems running on large custom-built servers distributed across two computer rooms. JLA also employs a range of "state of the art" supporting technologies, such as VoIP phone systems, intranets, VPNs, mobile data systems etc. JLA is so technology driven and dependent that in 2005 it was short-listed as one of six finalists for "The most technology-enabled business (under 500 people)" award by Computing magazine. The cost of all this technology? under 2% of turnover.

Steve's strategies have synergystically grown the IT capabilities of the organisation alongside its operational business needs to drive down waste, minimise complexity and maximise reliability - the result is a business IT platform that costs a quarter of what it should according to industry norms, and yet is widely cited and referenced as an epitome of IT sophistication in mid-size enterprise and has been the subject of goverment-sponsored research and international academic presentation. JLA runs an IT department which is under a third of the size that most IT managers and directors would expect, and consequently retains millions of pounds of profit within the company each year that in most businesses would be wasted expenditure.

Steve can apply his unique philosophy and strategies to a wide range of businesses, and based on experience, can save millions in the average mid-sized enterprise while at the same time creating a more dynamic, responsive, adaptable and flexible organisation. Ask him how he could transform your business.