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Don’t waste your money

Minimising outgoings is a difficult task for companies that have already implemented cost-cutting measures. The good news is that there are some less obvious ways in which you can minimise your overall costs without damaging customer service.

A good first step is to talk to your employees – if you are looking to make changes it helps to get them on board and they may even have their own ideas on how to reduce waste.

Older staff can be resistant to change, so if you are serious about saving money it might be worth investing in training to demonstrate how everyone can benefit from doing things differently.

Driving down costs

Almost every business relies on transport to some extent, whether that is for making deliveries or picking up materials. One way of reducing driver costs as a percentage of turnover is to use telematics technology, which can pinpoint inefficiencies by showing you how much fuel is being used per vehicle and each vehicle’s average speed.

The data can also help identify driver behaviour issues, for example if a driver is braking harshly or exceeding the speed limit. These issues can then be resolved through driver training, which will have a positive impact on reducing fuel and vehicle maintenance costs, as well as improving general road safety.

With petrol and diesel costs being so unpredictable you might also benefit from using a company fuel card. While this will limit where you can fill up, you should get a better price.

Cutting your cover ain’t worth it

We are all familiar with using price comparison sites to shop around for the best deal on our home insurance, so there is no reason to take the first business insurance quote you receive or assume your existing provider is offering you the best deal.

Monitoring insurance costs to ensure they are appropriate for the risks you face can reduce the amount you pay for your cover, but you must also accept that it might push up your premium where existing cover is found to be inadequate.

The potential cost to a business that chases the lowest premium without ensuring that its policy provides adequate cover can be devastating in the event of a claim.

Prevention is the best cure

Likewise, don’t be tempted to delay scheduled maintenance of equipment or vehicles. Machines that receive regular maintenance operate more efficiently and use less energy and are less likely to break down.

A proactive maintenance programme reduces the chance of a vehicle malfunctioning on the road and causing an accident. In addition, properly maintained vehicles are on the road more and cost less money in repairs over time.

When it comes to measuring the success of cost-cutting measures, the proof is in the pudding. By examining the data from a cloud-based accounting solution such as Big Red Cloud you can quickly see what is working – and which measures are not producing the desired result.

Marc O'Dwyer

After completing a Graduate program in Marketing, Marc’s impressive sales career began at Allied Irish Banks, Pitney Bowes and Panasonic where he received numerous Irish and European sales performance awards and consistently exceeded targets and expectations. In 1992, Marc’s entrepreneurial spirit led him to set up his own business, Irish International Sales (IIS). Initially, this company was a reseller for Take 5 Accounts and Payroll software. Within four years, IIS became the largest reseller of Take 5 in Ireland, acquiring four other Take 5 resellers. He also found time to set up two mobile phone shops under the Cellular World brand and a web design company offering website design services for small businesses. In 2001, he bought the majority share in a small Irish software business, Big Red Book. At that time, the company was losing money. The company became profitable within two months, and Marc then acquired a payroll company to compliment Big Red Books Accounting products. In 2003, IIS were appointed as Channel Partners with SAP for their new SME product, SAP Business One. Marc sold his Take 5 business and concentrated on developing this new market for SAP As a result, by 2007, IIS was recognised as the largest Channel Partner for SAP in EMEA (Europe Middle East and Africa). In 2008, the IIS Sales Manager bought the Company from Marc in an MBO. He launched Big red cloud in June 2012, the online version of big red book, to date the company successfully converts 59% of trials into sales and the number of customers is growing rapidly. Marc continues to run both Big Red Book and Big Red Cloud which now support 75,000 businesses. He is a very keen sportsman, having played rugby for 20 years, represented Leinster at under 16 and under 20 levels, and league squash with Fitzwilliam Lawn Tennis Club for 10 years. Marc has competed in 11 Marathons, including the London and Boston Marathons, and has completed several Triathlons and Half Ironman races. He has also completed six Ironman Races in Austria(x2), Frankfurt (Germany), Nice (France) , Mallorca (Spain) and Copenhagen (Denmark)

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