Budgeting for tech maintenance often gets short-shrift in many law firms, but it shouldn’t. While less glamorous than a new investment, maintenance still packs a major punch in terms of operational performance. It’s also one of the best ways to ensure you get the most out of your legal tech investment.
Keeping up with routine maintenance costs significantly less than implementing a new tech solution, and while eventually you will need to upgrade your technology, prolonging the time between expensive tech purchases or costly emergency repairs just makes smart fiscal sense.
But exactly how much does it cost to maintain your hardware, software and other tech systems? That, of course, depends on your law firm. Here are some tips for identifying what to include in your technology maintenance budget.
How to Create an Accurate Tech Maintenance Budget
To plan for the future, it’s helpful to look at the past. Here are some things to consider as you create a tech maintenance budget for your law firm.
- Historical data: Evaluate your past spend on maintenance-related items. Have the majority of those costs been reactive expenses versus proactive maintenance costs? Be critical with your analysis. The better your data, the more accurately you can plan a future budget.
- Establish a reserve fund: Like any healthy budget, you should set money aside for emergencies. Maintenance won’t prevent everything, so planning for the unexpected will make those emergency costs easier to swallow.
- Cover all tech categories: Some tech expenses can get overlooked when planning a maintenance budget, especially one-off costs like licensing costs, processing fees or procurement costs. Make sure all spending in the tech category is included in your budget forecast.
Lastly, with any budget, it’s critical to be in alignment with your firm’s priorities. From a tech perspective, that means understanding which technology is essential to your staff’s day-to-day work and which is merely important. Knowing how these items fall within the hierarchy of budget planning will help you most accurately plan your budget. To learn more about the costs associated with maintaining and upgrading Apple technology at your law firm, get in touch with our team at Honeycrisp. We focus on helping Apple-loving lawyers ensure their tech is operating at full capacity.