Project Management

IT project cost/benefit calculator

Originally Published:
Oct 2017

Accurately calculating an IT project’s costs and benefits is among the most challenging of professional tasks. It requires expertise in planning and executing projects, developing budgets, and understanding how both costs and benefits change over the life of a technical initiative. This updated calculator provides a customizable Excel spreadsheet for collecting and calculating IT project costs and benefits.

Calculator description:

Designed as a ready-made framework for IT pros to list and calculate the actual expenses associated with their organization’s technology projects, this tool includes sections for collecting a project’s year-one costs, as well as its second- and third-year expenses. Tabs are also provided for listing and estimating the project’s cost savings and revenue-creating opportunities. The last tab in the spreadsheet automatically calculates the project’s overall cost/benefit total.

The template includes sample cost and benefit information that might apply if a 12-site organization were deploying a new business-specific application and using a data center for powering backend operations. Each project’s elements are, of course, unique, so be sure to carefully plan and structure their costs and benefits. Some 50 hours of planning were estimated for the sample project.

As hardware and software systems age, organizations often begin planning for replacing and/or upgrading their existing systems every four years. If necessary, you can add worksheets for fourth-year and even fifth-year cost/benefit calculations.

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