We have gathered an exhaustive list of ways (101 to be exact!) to save money at work and increase profits for small business owners and make it into a comprehensive infographics!
This will be part 1 of our series of 101 Ways to Save Money moving forward, we will be releasing a few more soon so watch out for it.
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- Reduce number of phone calls Avoid making personal calls from the office. Reduce the number of intercom connections in office and let one person manage all the incoming calls.
- Use VoIP services It will reduce the telephone expenses, though VoIP phones may be more expensive than the normal telephone, it will be a long-term money saver in your office. Some VoIP services you can consider are Skype, Google Voice and Yahoo voice.
- Dial toll-free Check if your vendor, supplier or even a customer has a toll-free number.
- Re-examine your phone plan– See what you are paying for, are you paying for unnecessary features? Check the current plans and move to a cheaper mobile provider.
- Dont buy complete security solutions These complete solutions in the market will sell you the whole package and most often than not, you will not need certain services in the package. Do research online, check web forums to find a solution suitable for your office. For example, buying IP-based surveillance cameras and hiring a local contractor to install it.
- Get an alarm monitoring company that uses VoIP If you are going to use VoIP services for your phone, do the same with your monitoring company. It will save you some money.
- Do away with Fax machine Do away with the cost of landline, long distance charges, paper and printer ink. Use an online fax provider instead, it is easier, faster and cheaper. You can opt for eFax, MyFax or Send2Fax. If not, you can always scan and email documents.
- Go Paperless You can save loads by reducing the paper and ink cartridges usage. Encourage your staff to print out only when necessary. One way is to set a limit to how many papers they can print a month, other way is to adopt a scanning practice.
- Buy recycled printer cartridges Get a laser printer if your office is a heavy user. Use low quality 75 DPI and low setting settings for internal use to save ink.
- Use two-sided printing Use double-sided printing to save paper (and cost). Flip the paper manually if your printer do not support it.
- Share printers in the office Save money by installing up a network that allows staff to share the printers.
- Upgrade office electronics Sometimes the newer models of printer, scanners or air-conditioning can save you on ink, electricity etc.
- Sell older electronics Sell electronics you are no longer using instead of throwing them away on second-hand sites like eBay or Craigslist.
- Recycle stuff Get creative and recycle items in the office. Repackage gifts from clients as presents for others.
- All-in-one equipment Get a machine that does everything scans, prints, faxes and copies to save space and money.
- Purchase second hand items or lease See Craigslist, newspaper classifieds, or auctions to find perfectly acceptable equipment or furniture. Rent furniture or equipment from companies like Aaron’s.
- Use inexpensive web hosting -There are always cheaper alternatives. Some companies offer cheaper packages when you sign up with them for web hosting, domain registration etc.
- Upgrade the software only if necessary– Upgrades for the software are free most of the time. If not, dont buy it unless it is really needed.
- Make use of open source software Take advantage of all of the free software available. Use Apache OpenOffice to replace Microsoft Office. Due.com provides free invoicing and time tracking software.
- Use free cloud computing Google have provided almost everything for free, use Google Docs, Google Drive, Google Apps etc to streamline your office work and collaboration with your employee. Almost everything these days is based on SaaS and pay as you go model.
- Look for offers and bulk booking– Look to the internet for aggregating sites to buy office supplies for your business or your staff If. Try to negotiate with companies for bulk order and purchase.
- Always ask for a discount Just take the initiative to ask for a discount. You might be surprise by the answer.
- Make bulk purchase Buy wholesale or at buy and sell shows. Check out local offerings on Craigslist to save big money on office requisites.
- Make use of online coupons Search the Internet for coupons and promotion codes for hardware, software and electronic equipment.
- Take advantage of member rewards Take advantage of rewards points by from credit cards when buying office supplies or equipment.
- Ask for discounts for early payment If your supplies dont give discounts for early payment, then pay your bills as late as possible without incurring late fees.
- Go green Energy-efficient technology will save money over the life period of your computers, phone systems and equipment. There are also tax benefits to green technology.
- Install CFL bulbs Replacing incandescent lights with compact fluorescent lights will let you save about 50 percent on electricity need to light those bulbs.
- Keep the windows open and use natural sunlight Buy low energy-consuming devices and try to use sun light as much as possible. You will be able to save a lot with natural sunlight and with open windows.
- Lighten up Dark walls need more light to make it brighter. Why not repaint your walls if they are too dark?
- Install motion sensors Sensors will be able to detect movement in the room and switch off lighting to reduce energy use and expenses appropriately.
- Install timer Use timers on outdoor lighting systems so that light is switch on at night.
- Install meters Monitor energy and electricity consumption.
- Install thermostat To regulate the temperature if done properly, you save 10 to 30 percent on annual heating and cooling expenses.
- Turn off computer and monitors– Train your staff to switch off their monitors every time they leave their desks for lunch or coffee breaks. You can save nearly $50 per year, per computer.
- Unplug unused laptop and phone chargers Beware of vampire power, electronics can still use up electricity when they are plugged
- Change to energy-saving models of equipment Sure, changing new equipment sounds costly, however it will be cheaper and beneficial in the long run.
- Switch off advertising lights on vending machine Once again, the lighting is unnecessary for your staff.
- Switch off Wi-Fi during night and on holidays Switching off the wi-fi will make sure you are not having unauthorized download as data charges can be expensive.
- Inspect windows and ductwork for any air leakage Use duct tape to seal the holes to reduce heating costs up to 10%.
- Make sure that no obstacles are blocking ducts or fans This will enable cooled air to circulate more freely.
- Clean or change furnace filters monthly during summer season Dirt can lower the effectiveness and increase energy consumption, not to mention a furnace not properly maintain can lead to malfunctioning, adding to cost of repairing it.
- Do an energy audit Hire a professional guy to review consumption properly and request for an off-peak usage discount from your utility company.
- Avoid travelling at company expenses if necessary Ask your client to pay for your travel costs as well as hotel costs if you are travelling to meet them. They are usually fine with it most of the time, if not, ask them to co-pay 50% at least.
- Make use of technology to avoid travel cost Get on a video Skype call, or use platforms like Cisco WebEx for online meetings and conferencing. This saves you both time and money.
- Do the business online -There is no need to do sales calls in person, make use of web conferencing and tools like Microsoft Office Live Meeting to make online presentations to the clients.
- Budget airlines and smaller hotels if needed Budget doesnt mean low quality, choose a well-recognised budget carrier and hotels.
- Dine at a discount Use discount dining cards such as Rewards Network www.rewardsnetwork.com. Save 20 percent at restaurants nationwide without showing coupons or cards at the restaurant; instead, you get a monthly refund check in the mail.
- Have Fewer Meetings You can focus on completing tasks, as opposed to paying employees overtime to finish a project by the deadline.
- Fly for free Use a credit card that offers frequent flier miles.
- Use Social Media to promote your company Save money by not hiring PR firms, use Social Media to advertise your company and product for free. Examples of social media tools are Twitter, Linkedin, Instagram and Facebook.
- Use YouTube Like social media, YouTube is a good free way for to show videos of your services and products to your future customers and current ones.
- Use a blog and update it regularly– Get a blog to tell the world updates on your products and company.
- Use online forums and message boards -You can find targeted customers and build rapport with interested customers and clients budding customers and clients.
- Make an e-newsletter Instead of getting a physical newsletter printed, get an electronic newsletter and email your clients, leads etc. You save on printing and postage.
- Wait till the last minute Keep your print advertising costs down and if you are not fussy over leftovers. You can get unsold, discounted ad space.
- Be a guest speaker This will help improve your sales talk and attract new clients.
- Reduce mailing catalogue Check your mail with that of other small trades to take benefit of discounts obtainable to large mailers.
- Add publicity material in mailings Insert vouchers into newsletters and other promotional efforts.
- Save on postage, send e-cards to clients– Send greetings and e-Cards online instead of using snail mail to save on postage.
- Plan when to do mailings and deliveries Plan your delivery and mailings that will have maximum take benefit of mass dealings.
- Use all night courier Overnight delivery rates are very competitive, you may save the costs if you are willing to wait a few hours.
- Send the mail early Save on expensive urgent delivery this way.
- Go for bulk Consider a bulk-mail permit.
- Sublet office space Why not rent that extra space out in your office? Besides making a little extra dough, you’ll save money since you aren’t spending it on heating, cooling, or powering that unused space.
- Rent unused parking space Make use of an unused driveway by renting the space for parking.
- Lease out company vehicle Maybe you only need the vehicle in the morning, why not rent it out in the afternoon or overnight?
- Reconsider your office location– If your customers do not need to visit your office, you do not need to maintain a glamorous office with expensive rent.
- Review leasing If the owner of the property cannot meet all the repairs try to get a rent reduction.
- Switch to an online payment While this can save you save on statement fees and monthly fees, there may be higher cost involved if you require a statement in future. Check with your bank first and calculate if it is worth the switch.
- Re-examine the insurance coverage and policy costs Ask around or your supplier about an inexpensive, reliable and safe one.
- Review marketing costs constantly -Do it consistently to catch areas where your money is leaking from.
- Track variable expenses Learn to utilise goods and services wisely.
- Control unnecessary establishment expenses Monthly expenses should be controlled.
- Maintain detailed records -Track companys situation thoroughly to have greater success in reducing costs.
- Pay bills on time Avoid the late payment charges.
- Activate alerts on payments -Schedule alerts to ensure you pay your bills on time.
- Make bank deposit early You get credit and start earning interest for that day.
- Seek clients with a value mentality Discount mentality clients not only increase your business expense, but also sap your peace of mind.
- Usage of e-mail E-mail over telephonic conversation for everyday communication since it is fast, practical and free of cost.
- Look For Tax Deductions Business owners are entitled to business-related tax deductions, you can deduct everything from business dinners to business books.
- DIY While there may be teams when you need the assistance of a professional, there are plenty of readily available resources that can teach you some of the important legal, financial, and marketing needs for your business. If you can do some of this one your own, you’ll spend less on pricey lawyers or accountants.
- Barter trade Start bartering with other business owners. For example, if you’re a web developer, create a website for cleaning service in exchange for one month’s work of cleaning.
- Find Sponsors Throwing an event is a great way to establish your business as an industry leader and do a little networking. Events, however, can get expensive. Find a sponsor for your event so both parties don’t have to front the entire bill. You’ll even get some free press out of it.
- Join an association Joining a trade or business association can get you membership discounts on everything from travel, insurance, car rental, and long-distance phone service. You can also get information about industry, counsel, sales prospects and other member assistance.
- Share resources with other small businesses Search for small businesses and try to share temporary human resources, physical resources and/or office equipment.
- Pool purchasing power Team up with other small-business owners to save money on provisions and other goods.
- Ask help from people you know Ask your contacts for referrals, people who need your products and services.
Staffing and Outsourcing
- Outsource HR and Payroll duties You can save time and money by outsourcing to a vendor instead of hiring a few employees on full-time payroll to do all these administrative work.
- Outsource other small odd-jobs Get talented freelancers on sites like UpWork who can handle one-off smaller tasks, such as web designers or graphics.
- Offer part-time jobs or intern– Hire college students on vacation to do part time jobs instead of hiring full-time employees.
- Hire consultants or contractors These people can work from home to minimize staff cost. You save on power consumption bills too.
- Hire interns looking for credits Get smart, young and determined interns looking for credits to do minor work for modest or no pay for four to six months.
- Look to local job centres or unemployment agency – You can get cheaper staff this way.
- Offer unpaid leave Encourage a healthy work-life balance, it benefits both the staff and the boss.
- Get creative with office leaves Why not ask your employees to work for four days a week when they don’t have enough work?
- Stagger working hours Staggering the hours to have an office presence early in the morning and deep into the night will help save on overtime hours.
- Hire part-timers during busy period Consider hiring part-timers to keep your staff happy, sometimes you can save on overtime costs too.
- Use Time Tracking tools to avoid wasting time –Time is money, use desktop and web-based tools like Rescuetime to track time usage in the company.
- Adopt time attendance system – You can track and check on staff who are not utilizing office hours productively.
- Finally, teach your employees the importance of saving Work together with your staff to develop and cultivate good saving habits for the business.