Times are tough for business, small and large, right now. That means many companies are tightening their belts and reducing their spending wherever possible. In fact, by lowering your business outgoings, you can help ensure it will be around for the long term. The good news is that there is a myriad of ways that you can cut costs in your business without damaging the quality of the product or service you provide. Keep reading to find out what they are.
Negotiate with everyone
If you are buying a resource, product, or service from another vendor, this is absolutely the time to negotiate a reduction in price. In particular, be sure to negotiate down the cost of your business rent and the prices your suppliers charge you.
The best way to do this is to find a way for each party to get a win from the situation. For example, you may be able to negotiate a lower monthly rent, while agreeing to lease a premises for a longer-term. Additionally, you could get your supplier to knock down the price of what they are selling you if you sign a contract to buy an increased volume of items from them.
Lastly, do not forget that you can negotiate with your employees too. In fact, many employees value extra holiday time, a four day work week, or health and medical benefits over the highest possible salary. Therefore be sure to check with them before agreeing to any contracts.
Payroll is one of the highest costs that any business has to find. However, there are many options apart from traditional full-time employment that companies can use to keep costs down. In particular, be sure to consider outsourcing specific tasks or projects rather than employing a full-time salaried person to do them.
By doing this, you can serve your business well twice, because not only will you save money, but you will also make sure you have a specialist completing the task. Something that should help it be completed to the highest level and will pay off later.
You won’t want to be wasting a lot of time finding the right outsourcer to work with, though. Therefore, be sure to regularly ask for recommendations from other businesses or contacts that you work with. You may even wish to go with an outsourcing website or agency. Just be sure to pick one with clear reviews from real customers, as these can help you make the best outsourcing selection for your business.
There are many costs associated with running a business. Not least the rent and overheads you will have to pay out to keep your premises open all week. However, as many companies have recently discovered, there is a great deal of work that can be done from places other than the office.
In fact, offering the chance of home or remote working can save your business a good deal of money. It is also something that is often covered by employees as a significant benefit. The reason being that it allows them to cut out their commute time and cost. While also reducing their stress, and allowing them to be on hand if they are needed by their family.
Unfortunately, remote working every day of the week is not something that will work for every business type. However, even for businesses where remote working all of the time would not work, cutting down to just 4 days in the office can save a surprisingly large amount of money.
The good news for the environment is that by being greener in the way we run our businesses, we can save a significant amount of money. This makes sense because the resources that the green movement wants us to protect like oil, gas, and wood are also things that we have to pay for. Therefore if we use less of these items, it means we will be preserving money as well.
Of course, there are additional benefits to choosing to be greener in the way we conduct our business. One of these is that it can force us to look for better solutions to waste. With many companies, recluse waste from one area of their business and turning it into something else useful like fuel or packaging in another.
Oh, and then there are the PR benefits of running a more environmentally friendly business. In fact, a little smart PR around this topic can save your vast amount in marketing.
Why buy software licenses that will regularly run out when you can lease or subscribe and get the same from cloud-based solutions? The main advantage of cloud-based software is that updates are instantaneous. This means if there is a problem or a security issue, your business won’t lose valuable time and money waiting for things to be rectified.
Additionally, having the same price to pay each money via a subscription budgeting can be a lot easier. Oh, and then there are the great discounts offered for paying all in one go.
Cutback on expenses
No one likes the idea of cutbacks, but if you want to reduce your operating costs, they are a necessary evil. However, where possible, it’s always best to cut back on expenses in your business rather than making people redundant.
This means you need to look carefully at everything that your business spends. Then decide what out of those things are essential to the operation of your business. With that in mind, social events and company perks may have to take a back seat.
Cut down on meetings
Unfortunately, meetings are a part of running almost every type of business. The problem is that unless they are run correctly, they can be a massive drain on resources and so costs.
One way in which poorly planned meetings can do this is by using up more time than necessary. After all, you pay your employees for their time. Therefore, if it is wasted on unnecessary meetings, it means other tasks in your business are going undone.
Additionally, there are other ways that meetings can cost your business a fortune. These include the cost of the food, drink, and refreshments provided for attendees. Not to mention the cost of the space itself. (How many businesses do you know that have a particular room for meetings that goes unused for most of the day?)
Happily, there are strategies you can use to get around this. The first is that you time meetings, and none are allowed to go over 10 minutes. This is something that can help focus the person that is giving the briefing. Therefore ensuring they only relay the most vital of information.
You may also wish to use an outside service to rent meeting rooms. This will prove valuable in two ways. The first is that you will save on the rent of such a room. While the second is that due to the extra hassle of booking and traveling, meetings will be kept to a bare minimum.
Finally, when it comes to refreshments, let employees bring their own coffee. Forget about the biscuits and sandwiches too. After all, they cost a fortune, and if you make the meeting environment too nice, they will never want to leave and end up costing your business even more in time.
Bulk buy, everything!
Next, if you are looking to save on operating costs, then bulk buying is an ingenious strategy, indeed. This is because it’s easier to get a lower price per unit when you buy in volume. However, for this to truly be an effective strategy, you need to think beyond office supplies.
Yes, that’s right; you can pretty much get bulk buy deals on anything these days, including fuel for your logistics fleet. You don’t need to worry about the added hassle of managing such an initiative either, because, with programs like Quarles fleet fueling cards, you can easily monitor usage. The best thing is that services like these tend to be completely free to sign up to, making it a genuinely cost-efficient option.
Finally, don’t forget there are a whole host of people out there that would love to get some experience in your business. In fact, such people are usually taken on as interns, which means they gain experience while either working for free or being paid a vastly reduced wage.
Of course, many interns go on to be employed by the companies they work for. Something that means you don’t just get cheap and enthusiastic labor, but also test out a possible employee. Oh, and if you do go on to employ them, they will be able to hit the ground running. This being something that can save lots of time, resources, and ultimately money for your business.
There is really no need to rack your brain for cost-cutting measures because there are so many strategies you can try. These include negotiations, running a greener business, and buying in bulk, amongst a wealth of others. All of which will save your business big money.