78 IT Projects by Cost and Duration (The 2020 Benchmark)

By Frank De Pasquale

February 26, 2020

We went through hundreds of IT projects to uncover 78 (now 79!) of the most high-impact, must-have initiatives.

Then, we sorted them into 6 focus areas and benchmarked each by cost 💰 and duration ⏱️ (time to implement).

Better yet, you can filter through the list to find the best initiative for your business.

  1. Cyber Security Projects
  2. Cloud Technology Projects
  3. Performance Improvements
  4. Productivity Improvements
  5. IT Strategy Initiatives
  6. IT Operations Initiatives

Start by narrowing down on a focus area. Then, identify the fundamentals you don’t have in place. Finally, filter by lowest cost and duration.

Boom. You’ve just found the lowest hanging fruit for your business.

Bonus: Make sure you grab the free spreadsheet bundle at the end of the guide. It contains all 78 IT projects in a filterable spreadsheet, plus all the infographics to share with your team.

Let’s dive in…

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Cyber Security Projects

1. Upgrade to Windows 10
Project Cost: 💰💰💰Duration: ⏱️⏱️⏱️
Windows 7 has now reached end of support (January 14, 2020). This means that you won’t continue to get regular security updates, unless you pay for them through Microsoft’s Extended Security Updates program.

Windows 7 Enterprise Windows 7 Pro
Year 1 (2020) $25/device $50/device
Year 2 (2021) $50/device $100/device
Year 3 (2022) $100/device $200/device

If you’ve still got computers running Windows 7, they’re probably out of warranty and moving at a snail’s pace (yet another reason to upgrade). But this pathway is far cheaper, and gives you access to Windows Updates.

2. Cyber Security (Anti-Phishing) Awareness Training
Project Cost: 💰💰Duration: ⏱️⏱️⏱️⏱️⏱️
Cyber Security Awareness Training gives your people the knowledge they need to protect your business. Proofpoint’s 2020 State of the Phish Report states, “88% of organisations experienced spear phishing attacks in 2019”.

3. Multi-factor Authentication (MFA)
Project Cost: 💰Duration: ⏱️⏱️
MFA (also known as Two-Factor Authentication / 2FA) gives your business a second line of defence for scenarios when the intruder has cracked or stolen the username or password to an account on your network. The team at LastPass pointed to research from Verizon in 2019, to show that 29% of tactics utilised to break into business systems involve stolen credentials. With this in mind, MFA is one of the single most important projects on this list.

Tactics Utilised in Security Breaches

Chart from Tekspace. Data sourced from Verizon and LastPass.

4. Secure Password Storage, Management and Sharing
Project Cost: 💰Duration: ⏱️⏱️⏱️
Writing passwords on Post-It notes or sharing them over email are great ways to have a security breach. Tools like LastPass are a simple (and cost effective) way to store and control access to your business’ passwords.

5. Password Policy Update
Project Cost: 💰Duration: ⏱️
Strong Password Policies significantly reduce the chance of a password being cracked. Your business’ Password Policy is a series of settings that – amongst other things – determine the complexity of your business’ passwords. All too often, they’re far too simple (e.g.: password123), and should follow the Microsoft Security Baseline. This is one of the most important tech projects in this list.

6. Network Firewalls
Project Cost: 💰💰💰Duration: ⏱️⏱️
Think of Network Firewalls as a security guards. They restrict movement in and out of your business’ systems using a set of pre-defined rules or policies. Today, Network Firewalls are a minimum requirement for securing your business’ data.

Network Firewalls are like Security Guards for your business systems

7. Intrusion Prevention System (IPS)
Project Cost: 💰💰Duration: ⏱️
If Network Firewalls are like security guards, Intrusion Prevention Systems are like security cameras. They keep a close eye on connections coming in and out of your business to detect patterns of suspicious behaviour. If they spot something fishy, they can send you an alert or slam the gate closed. Note: There are some network firewalls with IPS built-in.

8. Security Groups and Permissions Refresh
Project Cost: 💰Duration: ⏱️⏱️
Permissions are the controls that determine who has access to what. Permissions can be given to people, but they can also be given to groups of people. These groups are called, Security Groups. You probably already have these in place, but they often become outdated over time (and it doesn’t take long!) – with groups having access to the wrong data, and people belonging to the wrong groups.

9. Cyber Security and Vulnerability Audit
Project Cost: 💰💰Duration: ⏱️⏱️
As a business leader, you’re responsible for the security of your data but it can be hard to know where you stand. Cyber Security Audits can vary in depth and breadth but essentially test your business systems, network and even social media accounts for security weaknesses.

10. Employee Monitoring Software
Project Cost: 💰💰Duration: ⏱️
Products like Teramind UAM give you the ability to monitor employees in real time and use algorithms to detect anomalies in their behaviour. Malicious or not, Teramind’s Tackling the Insider Threat Report states that “43% of data breaches that occur are caused by individuals with inside access into a company”.

How insider access contributes to data breaches

Chart from Tekspace. Data sourced from Teramind and Info-Security Magazine.

11. Next-Generation Anti-Malware / Virus Software
Project Cost: 💰💰Duration: ⏱️
Next-Generation Anti-Virus software uses Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning to detect suspicious activity on each of your endpoint devices (eg: laptops and desktops). When the software thinks it has found shady behaviour, it can then send alerts to IT specialists or even act on the threat without human intervention.

12. Next Generation Anti-Spam Software
Project Cost: 💰💰Duration: ⏱️
Catch phishing attacks before they reach your people. The latest Anti-Spam software uses Machine Learning to identify and quarantine spam and phishing threats.

13. Endpoint Detection and Response (EDR)
Project Cost: 💰💰💰Duration: ⏱️⏱️⏱️
EDR is software that is installed onto all your endpoints (such as servers or workstations). The EDR software logs large volumes of data and activities from each endpoint and sends it to a central repository. From here, IT security professionals can manually detect, investigate, report and proactively respond to a range of threats. Analytic tools are also available to review the data within the central repository.

14. Proactive Cyber Defence
Project Cost: 💰💰💰Duration: ⏱️⏱️⏱️
Proactive Cyber Defence works like the human immune system. It uses AI to work out the regular behaviour of every device, network and user within your business. Armed with this data, the AI can quickly identify behaviour that is out of the ordinary. When the AI observes unusual behaviour, it can respond without any human intervention.

Darktrace: Industrial Immune System

Darktrace: Industrial Immune System

15. File Encryption
Project Cost: 💰💰Duration: ⏱️⏱️
Files that are encrypted can only be accessed by people with a special key. If you data falls into the wrong hands (hands that don’t have a key), it will be entirely unusable.

16. Cyber Incident Response Plan
Project Cost: 💰💰💰Duration: ⏱️⏱️
Once a cyber attack has occurred, the key to minimising the cost or damage is making smart decisions in as little time as possible. Cyber Incident Response Plans are a series of steps and decisions that your business would follow in the event of a cybersecurity incident, such as a malware or ransomware attack.

17. SSL VPN Installation
Project Cost: 💰💰Duration: ⏱️
The creation of a private and secure connection into your business from the outside. Businesses often use SSL VPNs (Virtual Private Networks) as a way for staff to access files and work remotely.

Cloud Technology Projects

18. Public Cloud Migration
Project Cost: 💰💰💰💰Duration: ⏱️⏱️⏱️
The migration of your business systems from an on-premise location (i.e.: your server room) to the cloud. The current major players in the public cloud space are Microsoft Azure, Amazon Web Services (AWS) and Google Cloud. There are many benefits to migrating your business systems to the cloud. Most of these are centred on cost reduction, mobility and innovation.

19. Hybrid Cloud Migration
Project Cost: 💰💰💰Duration: ⏱️⏱️⏱️
An approach to computing where some of your business systems are in the cloud, and others are on-premise. Business’ often take a hybrid cloud approach as a step toward a complete move to public cloud (for example, to retain legacy systems).

20. Legacy Application Migration
Project Cost: 💰💰💰Duration: ⏱️⏱️⏱️⏱️
It can be expensive to host legacy applications on-premise, especially when the rest of your IT systems are in the public cloud. For these reasons, you may consider migrating them to the cloud too. Some public cloud vendors (such as AWS and Azure) have products or approaches that can help overcome the technical challenges.

21. Database Migration
Project Cost: 💰💰Duration: ⏱️⏱️⏱️
You might shift a database to the cloud if you want a specific application (e.g.: CRM) to better scale and meet the demands of your business. This sort of work should be done in consultation with a database or software engineer who deeply understand your specific application.

22. Cloud Cost Optimisation
Project Cost: 💰💰Duration: ⏱️⏱️
There are a number of ways you can reduce the cost of your cloud footprint. Though the approaches (and language) may differ depending on the public cloud vendor you’ve engaged with, many of them are quite similar. For example, you could purchase services in advance at a discounted rate, or automatically turn your services on/off according to a pre-determined schedule.

Systems, Operations, People

The factors that contribute to cloud costs. Cloud Concepts Video Series from Tekspace and AWS.

23. Cloud Managed Services
Project Cost: 💰💰Duration: ⏱️⏱️
Sometimes it makes sense to engage a team of cloud specialists to keep your business’ cloud resources secure, updated and operating with as little cost as possible. This is particularly true for businesses who don’t have significant in-house cloud expertise (spread across more than a couple of people).

24. Cloud File Storage and Synchronisation
Project Cost: 💰💰Duration: ⏱️⏱️
Products like Microsoft OneDrive, SharePoint Online (if you are on Office 365, you already have these), Dropbox or Google Drive can be used to store files. All of them have desktop apps that ensure that everyone in your business receives new files or updates in real-time.

25. Cloud Backup
Project Cost: 💰💰Duration: ⏱️
Cloud Backup makes a lot of sense if your business’ data is already in the cloud. Sometimes, businesses use a ‘multi-cloud’ approach, whereby data is copied between two or more public cloud platforms. By doing so, they protect their data against a platform-wide disaster (i.e.: if AWS goes down, Microsoft Azure is still available). Lastly, the major public cloud companies have cloud backup service offerings. Check out our 5000 ft explainer on AWS Backup.

26. Cloud Disaster Recovery
Project Cost: 💰💰Duration: ⏱️⏱️
In a disaster, every minute is precious. For some businesses, complete system outage means ‘end of business’. The benefit of Cloud Disaster Recovery is that in the event of a disaster, the time required to restore key business applications, files and data can be significantly reduced.

27. Cloud Virtual Desktop / Desktop-as-a-Service (DaaS)
Project Cost: 💰💰💰💰Duration: ⏱️⏱️⏱️
Imagine having your laptop in the cloud! Rather than buying expensive desktop computers that run out of warranty and lose performance over time, you purchase a much simpler (and cheaper!) desktop computer that is used as a way to connect in to your computer in the cloud. Both Microsoft (see Windows Virtual Desktop) and AWS (see WorkSpaces) have DaaS Solutions.

“Macs, PCs, smart phones, tablets, and any device with a browser is all that’s needed to access corporate applications. Users don’t even need to install any software or download plugins.”

28. Cloud Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) Analysis
Project Cost: 💰💰Duration: ⏱️⏱️⏱️
Cloud TCO Analyses are a complete forecast of your cloud costs (and associated costs) for the next 3 to 5 years. This considers the services you’ll require (based on your business needs), internet connectivity and professional services investments. It may also consider other variables such as cost optimisation, business growth and alternative pathways (On-Premise or Hybrid Cloud).

29. Cloud Usage Reporting
Project Cost: 💰Duration: ⏱️⏱️
By monitoring performance, you can see which applications are under-resourced and running slowly, and which applications are over-resourced and costing you more than necessary. It’s important to make sure that this is done over a period of a few months, rather than a few days. This is because usage patterns tend to take a while to develop. For example, your finance team might consume a lot of resources at the end of the month, but not much at other times.

30. Cloud Architecture Review
Project Cost: 💰💰Duration: ⏱️⏱️
Not all infrastructure designs are made equal. Many may work, but only one of them will be the best. Assessing the design of your cloud resources can improve efficiency, reduce costs and significantly tighten security. In a recent article, CSO Online’s Michael Nadeau painted a picture of the importance of well configured cloud services:

“Forty-three percent of enterprise businesses had security incidents that affected third-party cloud services in 2019… [Cloud-related incidents are] expensive for smaller companies, which often are more dependent on hosted services. The average incident that affected hosted infrastructure for SMBs was $162,000.”

Michael Nadeau, Senior Editor at CSO Online

31. Data Lake
Project Cost: 💰💰💰💰💰Duration: ⏱️⏱️⏱️⏱️
Data Lakes are often used in Machine Learning or Artificial Intelligence applications. Think of a Data Lake as a container filled with your business’ data in its raw/natural format. This data may include databases (structured data); scripts or spreadsheets (semi-structured data); emails or documents (unstructured data); or images, audio and video (binary data).

32. Private Connection to the Cloud
Project Cost: 💰💰Duration: ⏱️⏱️⏱️
Private connections give you better speed and security to your business’ IT infrastructure. For the most part, when you use the internet, your connection is part of a shared network. Think of this like the road network. It takes forever to get anywhere! There’s no direct route, there are traffic lights and a heap of cars, all going about their business. A private connection to the cloud is like building your own road direct to the destination. There are no traffic lights and the only cars are those that belong to your business. Examples include Azure’s ExpressRoute and AWS’ DirectConnect.

Performance Improvements

33. Computer (Desktop or Laptop) Upgrade
Project Cost: 💰💰💰💰Duration: ⏱️⏱️⏱️
The speed of your business’ desktop computers make a world of difference to staff productivity and satisfaction. You don’t need to roll-out the latest and greatest gear, but you do need to assess the needs of your people and design your specifications around those needs.

34. Application Server Upgrade
Project Cost: 💰💰Duration: ⏱️⏱️⏱️
When these servers are underperforming, your applications will seem sluggish and unresponsive. These are the servers that operate your key business applications (such as your CRM or ERP) and other important services (such as Active Directory, which is responsible for managing User Accounts). Note that throwing money at the problem isn’t always the solution here either. Sometimes, poorly designed applications will run slowly on even the most rapid servers!

35. Mail Server Upgrade
Project Cost: 💰💰Duration: ⏱️⏱️
When these servers are underperforming, there are often delays in sending and receiving email. In some cases, they can fail completely (which means no email at all).

36. Network Upgrade
Project Cost: 💰💰💰Duration: ⏱️⏱️⏱️⏱️
Think of your network as the water pipes in your house. If the pipes are small or constricted, the flow of water will be limited. Upgrading your network is like increasing the size of the pipes so that more water (data) can flow through.

37. Storage Area Network (SAN)
Project Cost: 💰💰💰💰Duration: ⏱️⏱️
SANs are physical devices that are designed to store lots of data. They are incredibly useful for large businesses, or teams of people who work with a lot of large files. When your people are working with large files and you don’t have a SAN, it means they are probably working with files stored on their local computer, the cloud or a normal server. All of these scenarios are bad.

38. WiFi Coverage (Heat Map) Test
Project Cost: 💰Duration: ⏱️
What if I told you that it is possible to fix the WiFi dead spot in your office? WiFi coverage heat maps help to visualise signal coverage throughout the office so that Wi-Fi Access Points or antennas can be strategically placed for maximum speed.

IT Project Example: Wi-fi Coverage Heat Map

39. WiFi Access Point Upgrade
Project Cost: 💰💰Duration: ⏱️
WiFi Access Point (WAP) upgrades can significantly improve WiFi speed and coverage around the office. Note however that the placement of the WAPs is important too (walls, glass and water pipes can get in the way). That’s why WiFi Coverage Tests make a lot of sense.

40. Internet Connection Speed Testing
Project Cost: 💰Duration: ⏱️
Many people know how to test their internet connection speed. But in a business context, there’s more to consider. Publicly available speed testing tools calculate speed to and from your computer and their servers. But these servers are often in locations that are far removed from your business’ IT infrastructure. For this reason, it is important to test your business’ internet connection with your context in mind.

41. Internet Connection Upgrade
Project Cost: 💰💰Duration: ⏱️⏱️⏱️
The results from an Internet Connection Speed Test may indicate the need to upgrade your business’ internet connection. The cost here will vary greatly depending on your business’ location, as well as the type and size of the connection itself.

42. Application Speed Testing
Project Cost: 💰Duration: ⏱️
Your people can only work as fast as their slowest application. And slow software makes people frustrated. Test the speed of your business’ key business applications to ensure that your team can work at full speed.

Productivity Improvements

43. Office 365 Migration
Project Cost: 💰💰💰Duration: ⏱️⏱️⏱️
If you’re not already using Office 365, you need to know… it changes the game. Office 365 has a heap of useful features, but most of all it will dramatically improve the way your teams will collaborate. Work on the same document, at the same time, while you have a video call about it. Flick back to previous versions with ease. Share documents externally in two clicks. It’s all possible.

44. SharePoint Online Migration
Project Cost: 💰💰💰Duration: ⏱️⏱️⏱️
SharePoint Online is part of the Office 365 suite. Think of SharePoint Online as a knowledge storage, management and sharing tool. With SharePoint Online you can report on usage, keep tight control over data and build custom workflows to automate processes.

45. Microsoft Teams or Slack
Project Cost: 💰Duration: ⏱️⏱️
Teams and Slack are both fantastic communication applications. Both allow you to have text, voice and video conversations; share screens and files. In terms of communication features, the biggest difference right now is that Teams can be used for telephony (phone calls to other telephone handset devices). Slack can too, but only with third-party plug-ins.

46. Microsoft Phone System (Teams Telephony)
Project Cost: 💰💰Duration: ⏱️⏱️
Simplifying IT is smart because it improves productivity, bolsters security and reduces costs. One way to do this is to use Microsoft Teams (part of Office 365) not only for text and video chat, but as a phone system too.

Tech Project Example: Calling in Microsoft Teams

Calling in Teams from Microsoft

47. IP Telephony
Project Cost: 💰💰Duration: ⏱️⏱️
In simple terms, IP Telephony is a telephone system that works over the internet. No more phone lines. IP Telephony will give you better call quality, the ability to use apps on your desktop or mobile phone to answer and manage calls and integrate your phone system with other apps or services.

48. Software Integrations (with Third-Party Tools)
Project Cost: 💰💰Duration: ⏱️⏱️
Tools like Zapier, IFTTT and Microsoft Flow enable you quickly and easily share data between your business applications. The best part? No code required.

49. Retire a Legacy Software Application
Project Cost: 💰Duration: ⏱️⏱️
Dropping old software can improve staff experience, have productivity benefits, reduce costs and open up more modern investment models (for example, subscription-based Software as a Service).

50. File and Folder Structure Re-Design
Project Cost: 💰💰💰Duration: ⏱️⏱️⏱️⏱️
Over time, file and folder structures become cluttered and disorganised. Even worse, they become a data security problem with people having access to files they shouldn’t.

51. Work From Home (Teleworking) Setup
Project Cost: 💰💰Duration: ⏱️⏱️
Research from McCrindle shows that talent retention, cost control and productivity are the top three factors that are driving businesses to embrace teleworking. In fact, Mark McCrindle says that “51% of employees say they would take a pay cut in exchange for the option of more teleworking“.

Working From Home In Australia (McCrindle Research)

52. Wide Area Network (WAN)
Project Cost: 💰💰Duration: ⏱️⏱️⏱️⏱️
Imagine each of your business’ locations as a house. Now imagine there’s a private cable that connects each house to every other. With a WAN, every business location is a part of your network. They are excellent for system performance and security.

53. Remote Connectivity (VPN)
Project Cost: 💰💰Duration: ⏱️
VPN technology allows people to connect to your business files and applications from a remote location. And when people have the ability to work remotely, they do.

IT Strategy Initiatives

54. IT Project/Initiative Roadmap
Project Cost: 💰Duration: ⏱️⏱️
IT Roadmaps help you to plan what you want to do, and when you’ll do it. They should include any tech projects, outsourcing engagements, warranty renewals and software purchases. Your IT roadmap should inform your IT Budget, which should be informed by your business’ corporate strategy.

55. IT Governance Framework
Project Cost: 💰💰💰💰Duration: ⏱️⏱️⏱️⏱️⏱️
IT Governance Frameworks are a series of policies and procedures that bring order to your business’ technology. Governance is absolutely critical. In fact, futurist Steve Sammartino thinks it will be the biggest tech trend for 2020.

IT Governance: The Biggest Tech Trend in 2020

Insights from Futurist & Keynote Speaker Steve Sammartino. Data from McDermott, Will & Emery’s GDPR Rundown.

56. IT Budget
Project Cost: 💰💰Duration: ⏱️⏱️
IT budgets should be aligned with your business’ overarching corporate strategy. Ideally, the IT Budget will capture Opex and Capex projections for all your hardware, software, services and tech projects for the next 3 to 5 years.

57. BYOD Program
Project Cost: 💰💰Duration: ⏱️⏱️⏱️
The ‘Bring Your Own Device’ (BYOD) movement is gaining traction. A thought-through BYOD program (including Mobile Device Management and clear procurement policies) will help your business keep ahead of the risks and capture the cost savings.

“The BYOD market is set to reach nearly $367 billion by 2022, up from a mere $30 billion in 2014. Clearly it will continue to be adopted by employers compelled by the potential benefits, as well as employees keen to enjoy greater flexibility.”

Lilach Bullock

58. Best Practice Audit and Risk Assessment
Project Cost: 💰💰💰Duration: ⏱️⏱️
An assessment of your IT systems, processes and policies against industry best practice. At Tekspace, we perform these audits multiple times each year for every Managed IT Services client. With regular audits, we can work with clients to focus our energy on the things that matter most to them.

59. IT Contract Review
Project Cost: 💰💰Duration: ⏱️⏱️
Having an independent IT professional review your contracts can get you better solutions for far less money. This is particularly true for software, internet and telephony contracts. At Tekspace, we perform contract reviews for our clients. Many of them save thousands every year.

60. IT Asset Lifecycle Management
Project Cost: 💰Duration: ⏱️
By planning the procurement, maintenance and disposal of your IT assets, you’ll spend less and get more out of each asset over its lifespan. IT Asset Planning should inform and be informed by your IT Budget.

61. Cloud Migration Plan
Project Cost: 💰Duration: ⏱️⏱️
According to AWS, there are 6 (now 7) cloud migration strategies. But no matter the path you choose to take, most migration plans can be broken down into four high-level steps: Assessment, Readiness, Migration and Optimisation.

Cloud Migration Methods

The “7 R’s” of Cloud Migrations. See the Cloud Concepts Video Series from Tekspace and AWS.

62. Data Retention Policy
Project Cost: 💰Duration: ⏱️
This sets out how long your data is retained as part of a backup. Important, since not everything can be stored forever.

63. Disaster Recovery Plan
Project Cost: 💰💰Duration: ⏱️⏱️⏱️
95% of organisations have a Disaster Recovery Plan, but 27% of those that have experienced an outage have lost revenue. Your DR Plan needs to be thorough – inclusive of the steps that should be taken in the event of a disaster, and the specific individuals responsible for each step. Lastly, you must test your DR Plan at least once every year.

64. IT Service Reporting
Project Cost: 💰Duration: ⏱️⏱️⏱️
Service Reporting gives you insight as to the quality of your IT service. This could include a measurement of the performance of your IT Help Desk, or the performance of your IT systems and business applications.

IT Operations Initiatives

65. Staff IT Training
Project Cost: 💰💰Duration: ⏱️⏱️
In 2019, 13 of the top 26 hard skills most companies needed were technology related. Of course, not everyone is going to learn AI Programming, but it goes to show how critical IT skills are to business success.

66. Office 365 Backup
Project Cost: 💰💰Duration: ⏱️
Something many people don’t know is that Office 365 does not back up your business’ data. Backup is your responsibility. The good news is that third-party Office 365 backup solutions can be implemented to protect your business from data loss.

67. Disaster Recovery Testing
Project Cost: 💰💰Duration: ⏱️
23% of organisations with a Disaster Recovery Plan never test them. Ultimately, DR testing should surface the time it would take for your business to recover in the event of a disaster. This includes not only your business systems, but also the necessary people and processes along the way.

23% of Businesses Never Test Their Disaster Recovery Plan

68. Standard Operating Environment (SOE)
Project Cost: 💰💰Duration: ⏱️⏱️⏱️⏱️
When a new computer is purchased, they can be built using an SOE. SOEs are like templates for the way your business’ computers are setup. This includes file permissions, the apps that are installed and the way those apps are configured. SOE’s help to improve security and the speed that new computers can be deployed to your people.

69. Outsource the IT Function
Project Cost: 💰💰Duration: ⏱️⏱️⏱️
No matter what you do, IT is a critical and complex business function that is constantly changing. Outsourcing IT to an MSP means you can deploy more resources to create value for your customers and developing your own industry expertise. Plus, you get a team of people with niche specialisations for a fraction of the price.

70. Outsource your IT Help Desk
Project Cost: 💰Duration: ⏱️
This is where you retain your in-house IT team for more complex technical matters, but outsource your IT help desk to a team of support professionals. The benefit of this approach is that you keep IT knowledge in-house, whilst simultaneously reducing ticket response and resolution times. The outsourced IT help desk can work directly with your people or as a backend workhorse to churn through problems while your in-house team handle communication to your staff.

71. Process Automation and Improvement
Project Cost: 💰💰Duration: ⏱️⏱️⏱️
Automating manual tasks is a great way to boost productivity and minimise human error. SharePoint Online comes with basic workflows for document approval, collecting feedback and signatures or tracking customer support issues. Software like Zapier or Microsoft Flow can be used for more advanced automation that sends data between applications.

IT Project Example: Process Automation with Zapier

72. Office Relocation
Project Cost: 💰💰Duration: ⏱️⏱️⏱️
All too often, IT is forgotten or the time required to move IT is underestimated. For a seamless transition, plan your next office move with no less than 3 months lead-time (internet connections can take a while to install!).

73. Hot Spare Pool Program
Project Cost: 💰Duration: ⏱️
Hot Spare Pools are a bank of working and pre-configured computers that are ready to go if another computer breaks or a new employee joins the business. With a Hot Spare Pool, your staff can get (back) to work in minutes, not days.

74. Network Monitoring and Alerting
Project Cost: 💰Duration: ⏱️⏱️
Network Monitoring places a watchful eye over your all your business systems and computers. When something goes wrong – or if there is a possibility that something might go wrong – key people are alerted to resolve or avoid the problem.

75. Staff Satisfaction Survey
Project Cost: 💰Duration: ⏱️
Do you know the number one technology issue plaguing your people right now? Send them a survey to find out. Ask them how much it frustrates them; how much time it consumes and who else is affected. Tools like Typeform make it easy. When you understand the problem, you can begin planning the solution.

76. Mobile Device Management (MDM)
Project Cost: 💰💰Duration: ⏱️⏱️
What happens to your business’ data when staff lose their phones on public transport, or leave the business in a rush? MDM gives you the ability to remotely view, support and wipe mobile devices.

77. Software License Audit
Project Cost: 💰💰Duration: ⏱️⏱️⏱️
Without proper management, software licenses have a tendency to creep out of control. Perform a software license audit to get a clear picture of the software you have, how much you’re spending, which staff are consuming your software licenses and how many licenses are remaining.

78. Uninterrupted Power Supply (UPS)
Project Cost: 💰💰Duration: ⏱️
UPS’ are physical (quite heavy!) devices that live with your servers. They are like batteries that keep your systems running so that they can safely shut down in the event of a power outage. This helps to prevent data loss, which can sometimes happen when servers are suddenly turned off.

79. Server Room Temperature Monitoring
Project Cost: 💰Duration: ⏱️
When you server room (or datacentre) gets too hot, your servers will shut down. When servers shut down, your business grinds to a halt. Monitoring temperatures will give you time to react if temperature gets out of control.

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Conclusion

As you can see, there are heaps of IT projects you can embark upon (and frankly, I tried to keep it high-level!).

Since you don’t have unlimited resources, the key to launching the right project is:

  1. Being connected to your business’ goals.
  2. Knowing how IT could be improved to get you there faster.

But knowing where to start can be hard, especially when you don’t have a background in IT.

That’s why we made this guide.

Now I’d like to hear from you.

Which tech projects do you think are most important for businesses in 2020?

Let me know if I missed anything.

Either way, go ahead and leave a comment below right now.

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2 responses to “78 IT Projects by Cost and Duration (The 2020 Benchmark)”

  1. BrianRuilt says:

    thank so much for your site it helps a whole lot.

    • Frank De Pasquale says:

      Not a problem, Brian! I’m glad to hear that you find the website helpful. Make sure you sign up to the newsletter 🙂

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