Yes, IT Is Expensive… Or Is It?

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“Is it expensive?”

This is often the second question that clients ask me. The first question is “How would you solve my IT problem?”

This question is a trick question. Not for me, but for the client. Many IT solutions can easily be classified as “expensive”. If you need a complete solution of compute, network, storage, and software components it will be expensive in terms of the dollar amount in comparison to the following:

  • a single PC
  • a modern flat screen television
  • many luxury automobiles
  • a cheeseburger
  • a modern home

You might be looking at the above list wondering what the pattern is. Do not bother, because there is no pattern. “Expensive” is a relative term. You might consider a cheeseburger expensive if you do not have much money, and if you are a billionaire you might consider the world’s finest luxury car to be inexpensive. Expensive is merely an expression of a product’s price in comparison to your available funds.

For example, when I was much younger I thought that a $50 dinner date was expensive. I now expect to pay at least $100 for my wife and I to enjoy a good meal during a night out. Since I am not old enough that the phenomenon of inflation could have doubled prices something else must have changed regarding my perception of what is an “expensive” meal.

What changed was my perception of money, dining, and the value of a good experience. I can easily feed my wife and myself for $10, but what kind of meal would that be? Would it b memorable? Would it be romantic? Would it be satisfying? Probably not for all three.

Now apply that same logic to your IT infrastructure. If you buy the “cheap” solution will it be reliable? Will it be resilient? Will it satisfy your organization’s needs? Probably not for all three.

Replace “Is it expensive?” with a much better question:

“Can I afford not having the right IT solution in place to begin with?”

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