There are many layers of complexity to running a business, but at the heart of them all is a surprisingly simple balancing act; maximum revenues, minimal costs. There are countless hints, tips and guides out there to maximising revenue and these are often very useful. However, minimising costs is an area that is often given a lot less attention. A number of steps can be taken to keep the running costs of a business down.

Cost-Effective Outsourcing

Work out whether it will be cost-effective to handle certain tasks in-house or to outsource them to an external provider. For example, would you ultimately be better off if you find an accountant to handle bookkeeping and accounting tasks you currently handle in-house? In making this decision, consider not just raw costs but also the cost in time and effort, which could translate into money if used differently. Consider also whether a better-quality job could be achieved externally and whether this could also impact positively on finances. If you find an accountant to handle your professionally handle your accounts, for example, you will not only free up time and effort within the business but also ensure that all allowances are claimed and all processes are compliant. This is one of the reasons most businesses do choose to find an accountant externally rather than handle all this work in-house.

Claim all Expenses

In fact, even if you do not choose to find an accountant to handle this work externally, it is worth having a closer look at your accounts. In particular, those expenses can make a big difference. If you don’t find an accountant to do this for you, or only use an external accountant for your end-of-year tax return and not your day-to-day bookkeeping, make sure you get to know what expenses can be claimed and how the claim is handled. Never let even small receipts languish forgotten in your jacket pocket or handbag, because these claims can really add up over the course of the tax year. Neglecting expenses can result in overpaid tax and increased running costs.

Energy Usage

Cutting energy bills is frequently touted as a way for people to save money from their household budgets, but the impact on businesses is not discussed quite so frequently. However, energy efficiency can result in some surprising savings on a business’ running costs over the course of each year. Many energy providers have improved their business offerings over the past year or two, so shopping around for a better tariff as you might do with your home provider is a good first step. The second step is frugal usage. Things like leaving monitors on overnight, when carried out by multiple staff across the course of a year, can turn into a noticeable expense for the business as a whole.