You need to cut costs.
Now we’ve already established the dangers associated with attacks on the Marketing and Corporate and Social Responsibility budgets. If I have persuaded you that cutting these should not feature in your cost-reduction options, where else can you save money?
Ok—here’s my top five.
- Attendance. Do you know what your sick absence levels are and how much they’re costing? If your HR people aren’t monitoring attendance and addressing sickness levels (in a firm yet sympathetic way) and other absenteeism-related issues, then your productivity will be suffering. You won’t need to hire new people if existing staff turn up!
- IT. Is your company harnessing IT constructively? By this I don’t mean handing Blackberries out to all staff so their lives can be made miserable in the middle of the night. I mean, for example, are your people teleconferencing instead of incurring the often huge costs attendant on face-to-face meetings? If not, then your business is missing a serious trick. And what about using customer access to your website to replace paper communications?
- Efficiency. Go and meet a few of your customers. Talk about their experiences in dealing with your organization. I bet, unsolicited, they will share with you just how inefficient your company is. From duplication of communications through to failure to renew lapsed contracts through to how your departments fail to liaise with each other… you will be amazed. More importantly, you will have an efficiency ‘to do’ list
- Remuneration. So your company is struggling but you and your fellow directors have voted yourselves above-inflation salary increases. You can’t do that! How about putting a greater percentage of reward against achievement? And how about extending that to staff at all levels?
- The patently obvious. Right now, there’s a room in your headquarters or other premises with a light on and no one in it. Probably several rooms, in fact. There’s a tap in a wash room that’s been left on. There’s several hundred laptops and PCs switched on with nobody in front of them. There are contracts with suppliers that are never reviewed for performance or better tariffs. There are staff members using the internet and their phones for non-business purposes.
Attend to these and you’ll save your business a small fortune.
Tags: absence absenteeism attendance budgets contracts efficiency experiences failure fellow directors inflation premises productivity recession reduction options remuneration salary increases social responsibility tap