All businesses waste money and the bigger the business, the greater that wastage is likely to be. Looking for savings can be time consuming and a distraction from more important tasks, but here are four ideas which could be well worth exploring.
1. Getting a grip on employee spending
Your employees may have a frequent need to spend money on behalf of the company, either by making small purchases of urgently required items, entertaining clients or incurring expenses on business trips. A lack of accountability with staff expenses can lead to a culture where overspending is seen to be an acceptable norm and micro-managing the expenditure of every member of staff can become time consuming and corrosive in terms of staff relations. Issuing your staff with a prepaid credit card gives them the freedom to make purchases as they need and gives you an easy access overview of staff spending. As an employer, you can determine the budget for each card, thus eliminating the possibility of overspending, and you can impose spending limits on particular headings. Employees upload expense details via an app and you can monitor their spending as it happens.
2. Develop the human resources you already have
Instead of always looking to recruit a new specialist, identify potential within your team and nurture it. Giving staff the opportunity to develop new skills and areas of expertise not only benefits your company, it also builds an appreciative team who are more likely to commit to your company.
3. Reduce the working hours of your staff
Predicted by John Maynard Keynes back in the thirties, the shorter working week has long seemed an idealistic utopian dream. Certainly, the perception among workers in the U.S. and U.K. is that they are working longer hours than ever. Research cited by Ohio University suggests that the average office worker is only productive for 2hours and 53 minutes out of an 8-hour working day. The rest of the time, apparently, leaks away in reading news feeds, social media, discussing non work-related topics and looking for new jobs. Germany is 26.7% more productive than the U.K. but its workers work fewer hours and research in Sweden has shown that a 6-hour working day boosts productivity and reduces absence rates. Reducing the working hours of your staff or introducing a four-day working week will reduce the stress levels of your staff and give them more time for family and friends. It will also reduce the energy consumption of your office.
4. Consider subletting unused office space
This can be a useful way of pulling in additional income at no additional expense but there are a few things to look out for. Firstly, if you are a leaseholder, you need to check that your lease does not prohibit subletting. Secondly, be aware that once your tenant has been in tenancy for a year, they will acquire occupation rights. It is crucial that the agreement drawn up for your new occupant is a licence and not a lease.