Time has a way of sneaking up on us. Despite the flow of time being one of the most dependable things in life, it can still come as a shock to find out that the fax machine was invented the same year people were traveling the Oregon Trail , or that there is more processing power in a modern graphing calculator than in the computer that landed Apollo 11 on the moon .
So if the fact that half of the year is already over surprises you, don’t worry. Now is the perfect time to take stock of your business IT plans, adjust to new mid-year developments, and make sure you’re ready to meet your goals. To help you finish strong in 2015, here are five fast, high-impact ways to address your pressing tech needs.
1. Stay on top of storage
With business growth comes greater storage needs. And while it may be tempting to simply throw hard drives at the problem, new hybrid storage solutions are a fast, affordable, and flexible option for small- and medium-sized businesses.
Combining data stored on local servers with a cloud backup solution can help you provide the security and high availability of a local solution, with the disaster recovery and global access potential of the cloud. The entry-level HP StoreEasy Storage lineup includes HP LiveVault and Vision Solutions Double-Take Availability software for management simplicity and cloud backup and compliance archiving options.
2. Migrate off of Microsoft Windows Server 2003
The time has come to migrate to Windows Server 2012. Microsoft is discontinuing support of Windows Server 2003 on July 14, 2015, and the risk inherent in running legacy infrastructure and unsupported, unsecure, and non-compliant software is too great to ignore. Consider updating your servers at the same time with HP ProLiant Gen 9 servers, designed with the performance and scalability needed to keep pace with your growing business.
The upgrade doesn’t have to be disruptive. Up to a 90-day deferral can help you during any dual-use period as you migrate, while an HP Server 0% Tech Refresh Offer can provide a low monthly payment plan for your entire solution to help you stay within your budget.
3. Save on printing costs
When IT budgets are tight, one area where many businesses can save is in printing costs. The average office worker prints 10,000 pages per year—approximately 40 pages per day . Assuming each sheet costs around 10 cents to print, that’s $1,000 of print costs per head, per year.
Reducing that cost by up to 30 percent  with HP Managed Print Services means that a 1,000-employee company can easily save $30,000 per year. Get started by completing the quick online managed print analysis survey to receive your free customized report. This tool can pinpoint inefficiencies and identify opportunities to save. HP SureSupply Auto-Delivery can also help keep unexpected toner and ink shortages at bay, giving you more time to focus on other tasks.
4. Secure your network printers
Network printers offer unprecedented efficiency and convenience, but they can also pose the same security threats as PCs and mobile devices if left unprotected. According to McAfee, half of employees say they’ve copied, scanned, or printed confidential information at work . That’s a big potential risk to your proprietary data, and can often be overlooked when expanding your printing and imaging fleet.
The first of its kind , HP Imaging and Printing Security Center can help secure your current printers and MFPs. This fleet-level solution makes it easy to apply an effective, policy-based security approach, streamline deployment and monitoring, and quickly scale to your needs. You can also simplify IT management tasks for your other devices with help from HP Touchpoint Manager .
5. Minimize upfront expansion costs
PCs more than four-and-a-half years old are estimated to cost 50 percent more to support and take 50 percent longer to perform many tasks . But it can be difficult for many businesses to invest suddenly in IT upgrades, especially when the needs are unexpected.
HP Subscription Services provides access to the latest tablets, laptops, PCs, workstations, and printers, as well as world-class services and support, and can match the level of services to your business needs and size. By moving your costs from capital expenditures to operating expenditures, you can better manage your growth and make your IT budget more predictable.
Less than 10 percent of action plans effectively formulated are effectively executed. That might not seem like an encouraging figure, but it also means that the 10 percent of organizations that do effectively execute their strategy have a huge competitive advantage . Staying flexible and adjusting your plans to the current situation will help you accomplish your end-of-year IT goals with minimal surprises.
 The World Post, 8 Surprising Historical Facts That Will Change Your Concept Of Time Forever, 2014.
 Computer Weekly, Apollo 11: The computers that put man on the moon, 2009.
 Kyocera, Rethinking Printing survey, 2010.
 InfoTrends, 2013 Vertical Market Study.
 McAfee for Business, Security Alert: Confidential Data at Risk Even with Policies in Place, 2012.
 Based on an HP assessment of printer manufacturer security offerings in market as of November 1, 2011.
 HP TouchPoint Manager supports Android™, iOS and Windows operating systems and PCs, notebooks, tablets and smartphones from various manufacturers. Some features require a subscription
 The Legislative Budget Board, Review of Replacement Schedules for Information Technology Equipment, 2013.
 CMAC, AICPA, CIMA, Management Accounting Guideline: Using Strategy Maps to Drive Performance, 2006.