Chasing after cost-effective ways to run your business can be a double-edged sword since low cost solutions are usually not all that good. This can easily lead to lower work efficiency and reduced productivity. In some cases, a business establishment can even cut costs on the essentials, which literally forces their employees into becoming non-efficient and negatively affects their motivation, which is something you should avoid at all costs. If you want to economize your business expenses, you have to look for things that won't affect neither the quality of the work you do, nor your work-flow. There are more than a few ways you can do this and, in a lot of cases, it depends on the niche you are in and also on the work you do. However, there are some general tips that can be applied to the average situation of an average modern business.
Energy bills can be a burden, especially in cases that involve large work-spaces and car parks. In order to reduce your energy related bills, you should make sure that you have a well isolated work space, so that you can control its temperature without keeping you AC constantly running. Investing into good isolation pays off very fast, it is a one-time investment and from there on, you have one thing less to worry about. Another good idea is to switch to fluorescent lightning in order to keep your electricity bill manageable. This especially applies to businesses that are situated in large halls and so on. As far as fuel expenditure goes, you should invest into GPS equipment for every vehicle, so that one can always find the shortest route, and promote driving at ideal speeds to conserve fuel. Make sure that you maintain your cars regularly. Poorly maintained vehicles tend to cost you more in the long run and they will break down more often, spend more fuel and so on…
Every business, no matter what niche we are talking about, needs marketing. Actually, this is probably where a big chunk of your budget goes to. Surely, there are other businesses functioning on a budget in your area, so try to seek them out and suggest a collaborative marketing campaign. By investing into a joint marketing effort, you will be able to reach larger crowds, without spending too much. It can also potentially create new collaboration opportunities with the company in question. Also, you don't need to limit yourself to collaborating with just one other company. Large marketing efforts can strain your budget less if you share them with others.
Instead of creating new positions and hiring people full-time, consider outsourcing some of the tasks you don't have to do on a daily basis. Having contact with a couple of reliable freelancers can help you avoid paying a full-time employee who doesn't have enough work to keep him/her busy through the entire month. It might take some time to find freelancers who are reliable, but this is getting increasingly easier due all the new social networks that are focused on connecting freelancers to employees like Elance and ODesk.
Budget Friendly Telecommunication
Phone bills can be a real burden on a company's budget, especially if your work involves international communication or a busy customer support line. Individual calls don't cost all that much, but they tend to pile up. There are more than a few ways you can economize telecommunication. You can use online communication tools to cut costs on those overseas conference calls. Programs like Skype can cover this for you nicely. These kinds of solutions won't take care of large customer support endeavors though. For this, you might need to go for VoIP, since it gives you all the essential features of an in-house call center, without forcing you to invest into all the infrastructure that goes along with it.
I hope I managed to shed some light on this subject. These are not the only ways you can save money, but keep in mind that you need to economize with efficiency in mind. It hardly matters that you saved some cash if you are destroying the quality of the work you are doing and the reputation you worked so hard to build. If you don't see a reasonable way to cut your costs, than it might be high time to consider raising the costs of your products or services.