Saving money is important to all kinds of businesses—those that are flush with cash, and those that haven’t yet felt the economic recovery we keep hearing about in the news. No matter where your company falls on that spectrum, while they may tie up your cash flow right now, smart investments will help your business retain its financial vitality for the foreseeable future.
As they say, you’ve got to spend money in order to make it—or in this case save it—so if you’re looking to lower your expenses and optimize your organization’s efficiency, consider these four tips:
- Upgrade your communications infrastructure. If your business is still relying on the bulky phone system you’ve had since the ‘80s, it’s probably time to consider upgrading to VoIP telephony to have your calls routed via the Internet instead of legacy copper wire. You’ll then be able to take advantage of cloud-based unified communications tools that allow employees to access all critical business messages from any connected device. Companies with 100 employees stand to save up to $920,000 a year by leveraging these affordable tools.
- Invest in digital security. While you might not think your business will come under the crosshairs of hackers, you can never be certain. Let Target’s recent misfortune encourage you to proactively invest in digital security: The company’s network was breached toward the end of 2013, and hackers made off with the private data of 110 million customers. The breach ended up costing Target $148 million. By making sure your networks are secure now, you won’t have to worry about incurring substantial expenses down the road.
- Encourage BYOD and/or invest in mobility. Your employees invest heavily in their own mobile devices—which they use throughout the day—so why not leverage that technology? By 2016, IDC predicts 65 percent of consumer smartphones will be used for work purposes. The surge in popularity of the bring your own device (BYOD) movement can be attributed to the fact that mobile workers are more productive than workers who are chained to their desks all day. Investing in mobility enables your employees to do their jobs wherever they happen to be. Say goodbye to missed sales opportunities, and say hello to employees willingly putting in an extra hour of work on a Thursday night.
- Consider flexible working arrangements. Do your employees really have to sit in your office from 9 to 5? Research says that employees who are allowed to work from home—at least occasionally—are happier, more productive and more loyal to their employers. As long as they complete their work on time, does it matter when or where they get things done? By investing in flexible work programs, i.e., spending the time to craft relevant policies, you’re able to increase the output of your workforce and fatten your bottom line without really incurring any expenses.
While you might be tempted to rein in your spending to take comfort in a fatter bank account, making wise investments now will help reduce your expenses over time. Which means you’ll have more cash on hand to respond to new opportunities. You’ll thank yourself later.
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