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A Guide: How to Stop Wasting Money in Business

StrategyDriven Managing Your Business Article | A Guide: How to Stop Wasting Money in BusinessTurning over a profit isn’t the only important task that you face as a business owner. You also need to consolidate this money that you make, which is why you need to avoiding wasting it at all costs.

It’s going to mean making use of all resources afforded to you, it’s going to mean making smarter investment choices, and it’s going to mean honing in on your mistakes — it’ll all be worth it in the end, though, when you’ve got a heap of cash to invest into the growth of your business.

To unearth all the things you can do to stop wasting so much money in business, be sure to read on.

Minimize your tax bill

Nobody likes the tax man, but unfortunately, he’s never going to go away. There are, however, ways to minimize the bill slapped on your desk every year.

To minimize your tax bill, you should:

  • Keep a track of your business expenses (receipts, invoices, vehicle mileage, etc.) and then seek to claim for them
  • Tap into the Annual Investment Allowance (AIA)
  • Research and make use of tax reliefs (such as the creative industry relief)
  • Pay your tax bill as early as you can

Invest in good website design

Marketing, especially digital marketing, is essential in the world of business. By not running advertising campaigns, quite simply, you won’t spread your company’s message or attract new customers.

As important as marketing campaigns are, however, they need not cost you an awful lot. More to the point, they need not cost you as much as you are no doubt currently shelling out on them. When you choose to invest your money on good website design instead of advertising, you’ll be sure to find yourself saving thousands in the long run. This is because you’ll have a platform that can act as a constant source of important information; your website can spread your message at all times, meaning you won’t have to constantly spend your money on spreading it yourself.

To ensure that your website does everything a marketing campaign can do and more, you have to align yourself with a web design company like Plego Technologies. They will make sure that your website works well in both a practical and aesthetic sense.

Turn off and unplug your devices

Even when they’re not being used, if they’re still plugged in and turned on, the various devices that you use in your office could be costing you an arm and a leg. They will be using up what is known as ‘vampire energy,’ which means they will be draining your electricity bill for no reason whatsoever.

Before you leave your office of an evening, you and your employees have to go around and make sure everything is turned off and unplugged. Other important forms of action you should be taking in this instance include:

  • Tweaking your power settings so as to ensure your devices shut themselves down or go into hibernation mode whenever they’re not being used
  • Resolving to never leave your desktop computers and laptops on their screen savers — believe it or not, doing this is worse than leaving your monitors and screens to go black
  • Never forgetting the peripherals (your printer and speakers, for instance), as they can suck up a lot of ‘vampire energy’ too

Take the above advice, stop wasting so much money, and put the cash you save to good use!

Relocating Your Business Internationally: A Guide

StrategyDriven Managing Your Business Article | Relocating Your Business Internationally: A GuideDeciding to relocate your business can come down to a number of factors. Perhaps your service or goods would find more success in a different country. Maybe you’re ready for a new challenge, or a family reason has prompted the move. No matter why you want to move to a new location, there are several considerations you need to keep in mind to ensure it runs smoothly.

The Location

If you’re moving due to a family reason, you will no doubt already have a location in mind. Perhaps your partner or spouse would like to return to their home country. However, if you are relocating to find a new challenge, determining the best place can be tricky. Would your products work better in a hotter climate? Or are they ideal for a country which experiences harsh winters?

Once you’ve chosen the location, you should begin to look for the best place not only for your business to be located but for you and your family also. It’s a challenge to view new homes online, so if you can, try to plan a visit where you can visit a number of properties before choosing one. If you have decided to move to Egypt, for example, Capital Egypt specializes in real estate Egypt and will help you find the ideal property.

Create a New Business Plan

When you began your business, you will have created a business plan. This critical plan will have detailed your idea, the funding you required, the profit you expected to hit in the first year and beyond, and more. However, it’s likely that in a new country, this business plan will not be applicable. That’s because the market will be different, you’ll face different challenges, and you may even require extra funding to get the business off the ground quickly. For that reason alone, it’s time to create a new plan, one which takes into account the new market.

Research the Market Thoroughly

Following on from the above point, when you are relocating your business to a new country, it’s crucial you research the market you’ll be entering. Who will your target audience be? It may be very different from your current audience, depending on the see economic climate, lifestyles, and more. Your market will also be able to show you if you require further funding once you arrive in the new location, or whether you will be getting more bang for your buck once you move.

The Legalities

The legal structure which you used in your home country may be completely different from your new location. In the UK, should you employ workers, you will need to adhere to the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 and the Equal Pay Act 1970, to name a few. In contrast, to carry out any business in Egypt, a foreign investor must either establish an Egyptian subsidiary or a brand, which will typically be a joint stock company or a limited liability company. Ensure you are aware of your legal status before making the move.

 

Protecting Your Personal Finances When Starting a Tech Business

StrategyDriven Starting Your Business Article | Protecting Your Personal Finances When Starting a Tech BusinessAre you finally ready to build your dream of starting your own tech business? If so, you may be concerned about how your business will impact on the personal and family finances that you are responsible for. However, there are many ways that you can help to both protect your business and your family at the same time when starting your tech company, and this guide will provide an FAQ to help you.

How can you finance your business?

If you are thinking about starting your tech business, then you may be worried about how to get the right amount of capital if you do not have the full amount in personal savings. However, there are many ways to finance a business without dipping into your savings. These include finding funding from the government or a business awards scheme which can provide you with the funding that you need to research and produce your innovation.

You may also be able to find an angel investor through attending networking events or create a crowdfunding campaign where the public can help to contribute towards your business on websites such as Kickstarter. You should also look into getting loans from your friends and family as these will help to support you without the interest of bank loans.

How can you keep business and personal finances separate?

Many new businesswomen are concerned about their ability to both support their family and create their business from scratch, even though it is possible to do so. To keep your personal and business finance separate, you should create separate personal and business bank accounts, enabling you to keep track of your expenditure for both, know how much profit you are making in a glance, as well as how much money you have to re-invest into your business easily, and allow you to fill out tax returns quickly.

You should also set yourself a business budget and a personal salary to enable you to split your money into reinvestment and family funds and to ensure that you have enough money for both of your purposes. This will stop you from exceeding the amount of expenditure that you can afford. You should also consider employing a financial advisor who can help to separate your expenditure and advise you on how to manage your finances more effectively.

What should you do if you are struggling financially?

If you do find that you are struggling to manage your personal finances successfully, you should consider taking out a personal Quick Loan, such as those provided by Cash Lady between £100 and £2000. This can help you to deal with any unexpected expenses that you have at the same time as building up your business which you have failed to budget for, as well as helping you to balance your personal and business finances more effectively until you are able to manage these and repay the loan that you have taken out.

 

Scaling A Small Business Tips

StrategyDriven Managing Your Business Article | Entrepreneurship | Scaling A Small Business Tips | Scaling Business
 
It’s no easy feat scaling a business, it is pretty difficult and takes considerable effort. At the beginning of a business, the owners will practically do every job that needs to be done. Things that involve a wide spectrum of skills and knowledge from different business departments, such as dealing with sales and marketing. It also means understanding taxes and corporate compliance including employment regulations and laws. And finally, usually, for small businesses, It will involve having to interact with customers on a daily basis.

Spending all your time fulfilling these roles can make you think that your business is far from any growth or expansion and in doing so would damage its foundations. Sometimes this is not true. There is a light at the end of the tunnel for those who struggle to grow their business. Scaling a business is a strategic program framework and requires an element of planning with compiling the business assets into one fluent engine in motion.

Like anything else in life, including business, you will have to put in the time if you’re looking to reap the benefits of success. Don’t focus on the short-term outcome of your work but look to the long term and build sincere value to your customers.

Here are some ways a small business can prepare for growth and scaling up.

Build A Good Sales Funnel

One of the first ways to quickly grow a business is by building a sales funnel. If a business does not have one, they’re making a monumental mistake. Sales funnels can help to somewhat automate your business functionality making it more established.

Upgrade Your Technology

Scaling a business will require some essence of updating the current system in place that takes care of the business needs. Whether it is a fleet of smartphones or vans, sometimes the investment will need to be made to keep clients and customers satisfied with your products or services. If your business requires minimal IT but still requires digitalizing documents or even hosting a web site, check out Hudson Valley IT Services company, who will take care of your site needs.

Customer Management System

Now manually tracking transactions is hard and can take up a lot of space when storing them in cabinets. No one wants to do that. Paperwork can get burdensome as the business grows but if you want to scale quickly, use a customer management system. You can find plenty to choose from online and make sure you choose the right one that depends on your line of work.

Email Lists

Back in the day, it was a little book with all the client information but now one of the best and most effective ways to grow a business quickly is to build an email list. The more people you can send offers and deals to the more potential sales you will have.

Scaling up takes time and strategic measure need to be in place to be able to counter-act any problems that may occur. Have you scaled your business recently? Share your tips on what you found helped you in the comments below.

5 Effective Strategies for General Contractors to Cut Costs

StrategyDriven Managing Your Finances Article | 5 Effective Strategies for General Contractors to Cut CostsContractors need to devise ways to cut costs in order to remain profitable. With increased competition, the need to cut costs has become important now more than ever.

Eliminating people is not the right way to cut costs. This will only stifle the ability of your firm to make a profit. Instead, you should look for other ways to cut costs and boost profitability.

1. Cost Audit

The first step in cutting costs should begin with a complete audit of the existing expenses. You should consider ways to reduce operational expenses.

You can relocate the office to a location where the rent is lower. Also, you can consider the shift from in-house to cloud operations to cut overheads.

A lot of contractors subscribe to different software services yet don’t use most of them. Consider whether the services really add value to your business by saving time or improving efficiency. If not, it’s better to cancel the subscription.

2. Time and Contract Clause

Instead of Under-the-contract-price, you should consider adding the add-to-exceed clause. In the former case, the owner of the project only has to pay a fixed cost that includes overhead and profit. This is not necessarily the most cost-effective approach.

Instead, you should consider the time and materials contract. This is a type of contract consist of the following three terms.

  • Actual material costs
  • Actual direct labor costs at a specific hourly rate
  • Agree on add-on to cover profit and overhead

The main benefit of this type of contracting is flexibility. This cost structure allows you to adjust requirements, replace features, and cater to changed user requirements without taking a hit on the bottom-line.

3. Seek Multiple Bids

When working with a sub-contractor, you should consider multiple bids. This may take additional time, but the effort will be worth it in the end.

You may have to send lots of emails and hammer the phones. But this will allow you to lock in on subcontractors that offer services at the least costs. This extra work will help in significantly reduce the internal expenses.

4. Inspect Your Schedule

You should keep an eye on your schedule for any potential stacking or acceleration of activities. Compressing the schedule will allow you to squeeze cost advantages. Time is money and any time that is saved will have a positive impact on the company’s bottom-line.

5. Financial Prequalification

You should prequalify all subcontractors to reduce the risk in case of cost escalation. This is particularly important if the subcontractor will bear most of the risks. It will help in absorbing any deviances in a project that result in increased cost.

By financial prequalification, you can get assurance that the subcontractors will be able to absorb any costs overruns. Some of the criteria that you should consider include pipeline, days of cash, and work in progress.

The above tips can help in greatly reducing the contracting costs. Consider adding an escalation clause in all your projects as well. This will pass on the risk of cost increase to the project owners.