Managing finances as a business owner is all about maximizing profits and minimising expenses.
Choosing either could result in a positive cash flow and a successful company. However, as simple as it may sound, saving money as a business is not the easiest thing in the world.
Over the years, business leaders have come up with several ways to budget their money more efficiently.
This 2016, here are five of the proven ways business owners are saving money:
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Taking Advantage of Self-Storage
Apart from money, there are two other precious resources that companies cannot live without: time and space. Space is a commodity that businesses use for inventory, storing old documents, reducing clutter at the office, and a variety of other purposes. Moreover, just like any other commodity, space costs money.
Over the past decade, the cost of expanding or building new space for your business has skyrocketed. This is a critical problem for growing businesses that need more space to spread their wings and reach higher.
Fortunately, you can take advantage of self-storage to cut down the cost of space and save more money for your company’s growth.
Self-storage, also known as "mini storage," is a fast-growing industry that’s all about around providing extra affordable space for businesses, organisations, and certain individuals. Renting a self-storage unit will give you access to the much-needed space for your growing business.
In addition to being significantly cheaper than building new space, renting self-storage units has plenty of other benefits. Business owners are also using self-storage units more creatively – from displaying interior décor to running a collectible toys store.
You can maximise your savings by using self-storage units for short-term use. This is an advantage since you can adjust your budget whenever you need extra space. Just be sure to rent self-storage wisely and plan accordingly.
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Also, remember to do your homework and research self-storage companies well. Double-check their facilities, assess their security measures, and look for reviews from past clients. You may save money by renting self-storage, but you could also lose money by choosing an unreliable company.
Technology has made it possible for enterprises to handle important documents digitally as opposed to using paper. At first, you may think that it is nearly impossible to run a company "paperless". However, it could be the most economic change you can do for your business.
The problem is that most companies overlook the actual costs of using paper. On average, an office worker burns through 10,000 sheets of paper each year, silently contributing to the company's expenses and storage space.
Although you’ll need to print documents on paper from time to time, there are plenty of ways to rely less on paper for your business operations. You can start using GoogleDocs to share documents, rely online for resources, offer electronic invoices, and leverage electronic document storage.
Another way to enforce a paperless office is to ditch the traditional mail marketing and start focusing on email. This will help you save further on postal delivery. Today, there are several platforms online you could use to launch your email marketing campaigns such as Aweber, MailChimp, and GetResponse.
Enabling Remote Work
With the rise of online collaboration and project management tools, allowing your employees to work from home is more practical than ever. This will help your company save a lot of office expenses such as electricity, space, equipment, and supplies.
Monitoring your remote employees' productivity is the key to making telecommuting work for your business. Here are some of the best tools companies use to manage their remote workers:
Just remember that onsite work is still effective if you want to ensure the productivity of your employees. This is why you should consider having a balance between onsite and offsite days (allowing one to three telecommuting days per workweek and so on).
Buying Second-hand or Leasing Equipment
In most industries, office equipment takes a huge chunk from the budget of startups. Additional equipment for growing businesses also requires a sizeable investment. This is why you should consider buying second-hand equipment.
However, many companies are hesitant to buy second-hand equipment due to quality and reliability concerns. This is why you need to look for trusted sellers from places that enforce buyer protection or a local shop. Remember to check online for reviews on a particular vendor. Avoid shady dealers that offer prices that are too good to be true.
Also, opt to lease equipment especially if you only need them for the short-term. Lastly, try to avoid "upgrading" your gear just because a newer version is available.
Don’t Waste Time
Just like space, time costs money. Time can also make you more money if you know how to manage it use it more efficiently, no matter what you do or what industry you are in. In other words, focusing on the productivity and time efficiency of your employees and your business processes will save you lots of money.
We've come a long way from timesheets when it comes to managing time for companies. Today, one of the best ways to save time is to invest in automation tools for your marketing campaigns, from email marketing to social media.
Maximizing your efficiency with time also takes time. Using a tool like Toggl, you can track how every employee spends their time on specific tasks. This way, you can gauge their efficiency and identify points for improvement. It will also help business managers delegate tasks by appointing the best person for every job. This is extremely useful when used with project management tools mentioned earlier for remote workers.
It does not matter if you are working on a startup or existing business in flight. If you consider yourself as a business-minded individual, you should always be keen to spot opportunities to save money. Using self-storage, going paperless, enabling remote work, better time management, and saving money on equipment; these are crucial steps in the right direction. Good luck!