Running your own business is expensive. It is expensive when you run your company out of your spare room at home and it is even more expensive when you run your company out of its own store front or office space. There are fixed costs, like the rent or mortgage you pay for your working space, your insurance costs, etc. Then there are flexible costs, like what you pay for your utilities and the salaries you pay to your workforce.
Finally, there are discretionary costs like what you spend on office supplies, furniture, decorations, wooing clients, etc. It is the discretionary and flexible costs where your savings live.
Lowering Your Flexible Costs
Nobody around here is ever going to advocate the reduction in workplace salaries. We do, however, advocate for allowing your workforce to work remotely and to telecommute instead of requiring their presence in your offices every day. The more workers you allow to work remotely, the smaller a space out of which you can run your business. Smaller spaces cost less across the board.
It is also possible to reduce what you spend on your utilities. The first step of this is making sure that you are getting the best possible rates for your workspace. If you run your company in an area with a deregulated market, you can shop around between providers. You can use sites like http://www.albertaenergyproviders.com/ to compare and contrast plans and rates. Make sure you’re getting the best deal for your dollar (or pound or euro, depending on where your business is located).
Lowering Your Discretionary Costs
One of the best ways to reduce your discretionary spending is to, believe it or not, make your office as eco-friendly as possible. The “greener” your office, the more “green” you’ll save. It’s true that, initially, the investments and upgrades you make to reduce your company’s carbon footprint might be expensive. Over the lifetime of these upgrades and investments, however, you should earn back at least as much as you spent in energy savings. More commonly, people find that these upgrades and investments “pay for themselves” many times over.
Here are some of the best ways to make your office “greener”:
Install motion detecting lights. This way you don’t have to worry about whether or not you left the office lights on at night. The lights will only turn on if they sense movement and will turn off if there hasn’t been any movement for a pre-set period of time. You can install these in your bathrooms, breakrooms and even in offices and bullpens.
Low Flow Plumbing. Employees take a lot of bathroom breaks. The more water you waste with each flush and each handwashing, the higher your water and sewer bills are going to be. Installing low flow toilets and faucets reduces your weights and, by extension, your bills. Consider getting a thorough water audit from a company such as H2O Building Services (https://www.h2obuildingservices.co.uk/) as it could help identify inefficient plumbing and ways to reduce water usage.
Go Paperless. Many tablet manufacturers are more than happy to offer sizeable discounts to employers who want to outfit their workforces with tablets and laptops. Going paperless reduces the amount of money you spend on paper products, machinery and maintenance.
Add Some Literal Green. Plants are a great addition to any office. They are decorative and they help “scrub” the air, which reduces the burden on your office’s HVAC systems, lowering your heating and cooling costs across the board.
There are lots of ways to save money in business but one of the best is to set your business up to be as green as possible. The smaller your company’s carbon footprint, the smaller your flexible and discretionary spending will be. Use these tips to help you get started on creating an eco-friendly office space so that you can start saving money immediately.