8 Simple Ways To Decrease Your Overhead

Everyone wants to cut costs as much as possible while maintaining a positive and productive workplace. Without risking employee morale (or your bottom line), consider these eight simple ways to decrease your company’s overhead in any state: Alaska, Alabama, Arizona, Wyoming, Ohio, Vermont. Implementing even one or two of these suggestions will result in a measurable, if small, savings.

  1. Telecommute

    One of the simplest ways to reduce your overhead is to allow trusted workers to telecommute. You can decrease your need for office space, which will lower rent and utility costs. If you fear productivity losses, allow your workers that have a history of overperforming to be the first to try it from home. Expect workers to be available by phone, e-mail, and any other messaging service necessary during work hours. If you’ve made the right hiring decisions, you know exactly who you can and can’t trust to mind the bottom line from their home office.

  2. Pitch the Paper

    The only office supply you really need these days? A computer. In fact, with payment processing now available in the App Store, no one can fault you if your run a business from an iPad or iPhone. Don’t buy Post-Its, paperclips, binders, or other unnecessary items. Lose the fax machine, copier, and dusty file cabinets. Spend your money on healthy (read: standing) desks and great computer stations for workers.

  3. Mind The Three R’s

    Reduce, reuse, and recycle. Reduce space and supplies necessary. Recycle: This won’t lower your overhead significantly, but it’s a great idea. Reuse anything and everything you can. For example, use the front and back of all white paper to take notes.

  4. Fire (or Hire) Your Accountant

    How much financial oversight do you need? If you have both an accountant and a bookkeeper, and you’re a small, entrepreneurial organization, consider reworking your financials department. You don’t need a planner, accountant, reports manager, and a bookkeeper if you’ve got less than 200 employees. Conversely, if you’re doing your own books — hire an accountant. Splurge on the services of someone who can take line-item tabulations off your plate.

  5. Think Seasonally

    Making considerations for seasonal workers and equipment can save you time, money, and energy. If you have a system in place at the beginning of the year, costs are easier to estimate in businesses subject to seasonal fluctuations.

  6. Lose the Phones

    If your office is in the 21st century, landlines might not be necessary. Reduce your communications budget by taking advantage of Google Voice, Skype, or VOIP phones.

  7. Reconceptualize Employee Benefits

    Eliminating or reducing matching and retirement programs isn’t the most morale-boosting way to cut overhead costs, but it happens in more businesses than you’d think. Attempt to minimize this problem by choosing cost-effective benefit solutions for both the company and its employees as early as possible. When the company grows, the tough decisions will already be made. If this is too inhumane, consider forgoing the entertainment budget. Less office happy hours may make some sad, but they’ll thank you when they have a 401(k).

  8. Multipurpose Your Staff

    Without a doubt, employees are the most expensive part of any business. Reduce administrative and support staff by streamlining office processes with new technologies, collaborative documents, and calendar alerts. For virtually free, your office’s network can also be its office manager. Know when, who, and why you are using these functions, and encourage open communication via a messenger service, such as GChat.