As a responsible business owner, there’s a good chance that you’re always searching for new ideas to help you cut costs while increasing your profits. Here are five creative ways to help save money that you can put back into running your business.
Outsource Administrative Tasks
In many cases, there is no need to bring on a full-time employee to deal with answering email support questions or to field phone calls. These tasks and many other can easily be outsourced to virtual assistants. The virtual assistant industry is thriving and you should be able to find capable, affordable help from among thousands of virtual assistants across the world. You can find qualified VA’s online at places like Upwork and VirtualAssistants.
Related Article: 3 Tasks Every Business Should Outsource
If you don’t think that you need a full time virtual assistant, but just someone to help answer your phones, take messages and set appointments, you can always opt for an answering service like MyReceptionist or CallRuby.
Explore Using Shared Workspaces
This tip is especially useful for entrepreneurs who are just starting out. Leasing a larger than necessary office space at a time when you should be spending your money on growth is no longer obligatory. Shared workspaces are becoming commonplace in most cities. These are often spaces that feature conference areas and meeting rooms where you can meet with clients privately, if necessary. Some spaces offer offices that you can work from, and others feature common working areas to be shared among several people.
With the ability that so many entrepreneurs have to run their small businesses from their laptop and smartphone, shared working spaces offer a significant savings opportunity. You can locate shared workspaces online through sites like ShareDesk.
Revisit Contracts with Current Vendors
Almost everything in business is negotiable. That includes the contracts that you already have with your current vendors. If you need to, you can offer to extend a contract for a longer term in return for a lower rate. Typical items that can be negotiated are internet services, telephone service (you may even be able to bundle your internet and telephone together in order to save a little extra money), and office cleaning services.
Ask for a Discount
You should get into the habit of always asking for a discount on anything that you purchase for your business, whether that be goods or services. Asking doesn’t guarantee that a discount will always be available to you, but one thing is for certain, if you never ask, you won’t get one. Even if you don’t qualify currently for a discount, it’s worth your time to ask what you can do to qualify for one in the future.
You can also give yourself a discount by opting to pay your bills electronically through your bank. Most banks now have a bill pay feature that lets you write ‘checks’ even if your vendor doesn’t currently accept online payments. It’s a small savings on the cost of envelopes and stamps, but a much bigger savings on your time, which is always precious.
Let Employees Telecommute
It is very likely that not every position in your business has to be filled by an employee who works on site. With the advances in technology that make outsourcing so accessible, telecommuting for full-time employees is also an option that more and more businesses are turning to in order to save on costs on overhead. Fewer employees on site means less office space to have to lease.
If having employees telecommute full time is not an option, even part-time telecommuting can help save money. And employees who telecommute enjoy a much greater job satisfaction as well as typically high productivity.
Author: Clare Hawkins is part of the team at Local.com.au. She has a great interest in small business marketing and web design. When not at work, she likes to spend time in her garden.