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7 Ways To Save Money On Equipment For Your Business

StrategyDriven Managing Your Finances Article | 7 Ways To Save Money On Equipment For Your Business | business equipment | entrepreneurshipLots of companies can end up overspending on equipment. Whether you’re buying office furniture or industrial machinery, here are seven tips to keep the costs down.

Shop second hand

Used equipment is always cheaper than brand new equipment. You do however need to be wary of the condition. Older equipment that has been well used may be more likely to break. For this reason, you should always inspect such equipment in person before buying.

If you’re buying used equipment online, make sure that a description of the condition and photos are provided. It could also be worth buying from a reputable seller – read reviews to see what other customers have to say.

When it comes to general equipment, it could be worth looking out for company closures in your area. Many companies will be selling equipment for cheap simply to get rid of it – some of it may be in very good condition.

Look out for sales and coupons

Dealers of both new and used commercial equipment may have sales throughout the year. A popular time to hold a sale is in January, whilst the Black Friday weekend is another popular sales period. Also look out for off season sales on seasonal equipment – commercial mowers may be cheaper to buy in winter when there’s less demand for gardening equipment.

You may also be able to grab discounts by using coupons. These can be found on coupon sites or by signing up to commercial equipment retailer mailing lists.

Avoid splurging on gimmicks

It’s important that any equipment you buy is appropriate for your needs. Try to avoid splashing out on equipment that’s more complex than necessary. If you’re only looking to do some basic printing, you don’t need a heavy-duty industrial printer capable of printing 60 sheets of paper per minute – a basic commercial printer will do the job and will save you money. Only high end niche businesses are likely to need the most complex equipment available – if you’re starting a printing company, a heavy duty printer might be more suitable.

Hire single use equipment

A popular mistake made by many companies is buying equipment that will only ever get used once or twice. By hiring this equipment, you could save a lot of money.

Hiring equipment can also be sensible if you don’t have the storage space for such as equipment. For instance, a construction company may hire a crane rather than buying one. This could save money having to create extra warehouse space.

By shopping around, you can find the best equipment hire prices. Make sure that the company has a good online reputation so that you know you’re hiring good quality equipment. A good company will keep all equipment well maintained – although you may still be liable for any damage you cause.

Consider energy efficiency

Energy-efficiency is an important factor to consider when it comes to buying machinery. A machine that consumes a lot of energy will cost you more in energy bills. Older equipment is likely to be less energy efficient than modern equipment, which is something to consider when buying used equipment. You may be able to find information on the energy efficiency online, as is the case with these energy efficient desktop computers.

Know when to repair, when to replace

You can also save costs by knowing when to repair and when to replace equipment.

Choosing to repair equipment could save you money in many instances. You can find all kinds of niche parts online from a wafer ring/frame to a new monitor screen – if you feel up to the challenge, you could do your own repairs. Alternatively, you could hire a repair technician to do repairs for you – this may still be cheaper than replacing with certain equipment.

You may want to consider replacing equipment if it is old or has broken numerous times in the past. It’s possible you may be able to sell old broken machinery for parts – this could help give you some money to put towards a replacement.

Warranties or contents insurance may be able to cover the cost of repairing or replacing machinery in some cases. This is worth looking into before you make any decisions.

Maintain your equipment

You may be able to stop equipment breaking in the first place by keeping it well maintained. Certain maintenance may be able to be carried out by your employees, whilst more complex equipment may need to regularly serviced by a professional technician (such as construction vehicles or medical machinery).

Cleaning is often one of the most important maintenance tasks – this is not just a matter of health and safety but also a way of keeping machinery working properly. Dust build-ups can affect many types of machinery and are a common cause of computers failing. If there’s a lot of dust in the air, you may be able to install an extractor fan or use an air purifier to keep it clean.

You should also be careful of environmental factors like cold and humidity. Certain machinery may break if it is stored somewhere that is too hot or too cold. Agricultural machinery for instance may need to be kept indoors when not in use and covered up to prevent damage from rust.

Money Management Tips Every Business Should Consider

StrategyDriven Budget Management ArticleRunning a business is something that takes grit and resilience. This is because you’re likely to face many hiccups along the way as well as challenges as most businesses do. However, if you make a conscious effort to ensure you’re continuously learning, taking in new information, and keeping up with industry trends, you should find that your business continues to grow. Of the many key aspects of your business, finances are one of the most important. In light of this, you should continuously look for ways to ensure that your business finances are well managed. On that note, you’re going to find some key money management tips every business should consider below.

Look for Discounts

Bargaining and looking for discounts is something that can be done, even when running a business. For this reason, when looking for ways to manage money and resources in your business, you should consider where you can get reasonable discounts. You could, for instance, speak to your vendors and see if you can get a discount, especially if you’ve been a loyal customer. You can also try checking other areas such as your internet provider, phone bill, and insurance providers as well. The goal should be to save as much as you can as it all adds up at the end of the day.

Keep Track of Expenses

Another way that you can effectively manage money in your business, is to keep track of your expenses. This may seem obvious, but it can become easy to lose track of your expenses and begin spending outside of your budget. Some tips for keeping track of your business expenses include developing a bookkeeping system, setting up a payroll system, and determining your tax obligations. In addition to this, you should also carry out audits on a regular basis and ensure your finance team is effectively carrying out their job. As the saying goes that every penny counts, it’s imperative that you know where your money is going. When tracking expenses, you should also ensure that they are within your overall budget.

Periodically Review Expenditure

After tracking your expenses, the next logical thing to do would be to ensure everything adds up. While doing so, you might notice that there are unnecessary expenses eating out of your budget. You should, therefore, be realistic and see if there happen to be any expenses that can be completely eliminated or reduced. This could mean reducing the amount you spend on buying office snacks or seeing if you can get a cheaper alternative. If you find you’re going through a rough patch, it could also mean reducing the amount you pay yourself some months. To cover unforeseen expenses, you could find a loan with good or bad credit to help you get by that month. The idea should be to get rid of expenses you don’t need so that you free up your money and have more disposable cash to work with.

Save

One of the most important things to do when managing money as a business is save. This is where budgeting comes into play as saving is almost impossible without budgeting. You should begin by looking at your cash flow and determine how much you can actually afford to save. As with any time you’re saving money, you should pay yourself before spending anything. In addition, reducing your expenses as mentioned above means that you have a lot more left over to save and reinvest in other aspects of your business.

Hire a Professional

If you don’t have one already, hiring a CFO or accountant is a good idea if you need help managing your money as a business. They typically have the expertise needed to keep you on track and ensure you meet your financial goals. Seeing as tracking your business expenses can be tedious, they can take on this task and let you know if they identify any areas of concern such as with your cash flow. You could also explore the option of hiring a freelancer or contracting with a local provider instead if you’re trying to cut costs or can’t afford a full-time employee.

Money management tends to have similar fundamentals whether you’re trying to apply it in a business or your personal life. It is, therefore, key that you adopt positive habits when it comes to money and use the many tools and software available to aid the process. Hopefully, after reading the tips above you’ve learned a few more money management tips every business should consider.

Alternative Selection – More Efficient Processes Can Increase Costs

StrategyDriven Alternative Selection ArticleThere is a common misperception that being more efficient necessarily equates to being more cost effective. However, that relationship does not necessarily exist. While seemingly desirable to be more efficient, the benefits may not necessarily be cost reductions. In fact, depending on where the efficiencies are gained within a given process, higher costs may be incurred. Consequently, leaders must articulate their goals as a specific outcome to be achieved, cost reductions being one, and not simply as a desire to be more efficient.


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Additional Information

Additional information on determining the overall value, including cost reduction potential, of initiatives can be found in the following StrategyDriven articles:


About the Author

Nathan Ives, StrategyDriven Principal is a StrategyDriven Principal and Host of the StrategyDriven Podcast. For over twenty years, he has served as trusted advisor to executives and managers at dozens of Fortune 500 and smaller companies in the areas of management effectiveness, organizational development, and process improvement. To read Nathan’s complete biography, click here.

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