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Cash flow under pressure? Reduce your business expenses with our top tips.

Running a business can be hugely rewarding, but the financial pressures can be high.  

Recent inflation and supply chain disruptions haven’t made this easier for business owners, putting particular strain on SMEs that lack the cash reserves of larger businesses.  

To protect your cash flow and your long-term investment plans, a budget is crucial. Central to developing an effective budget is reducing your operating expenses and business costs. 

You don’t have to overhaul your operations completely – you can achieve cost-effective processes with small changes and prioritising sustainable financial management.  

Develop a strategic budget 

A budget which prioritises your business’ core needs and long-term goals is essential to protecting your cash flow.  

Your budget should be as flexible as possible, allowing your business to respond to market fluctuations and new opportunities while meeting key operating costs.  

You should also regularly review your budget, particularly with regard to routine costs, and track your expenditure to identify patterns and potential savings.  

Consider implementing spending caps for various departments to encourage cost-conscious behaviours and capitalise on available discounts or bulk buying opportunities. 

Manage financial liabilities   

Make sure to keep an eye on recurrent costs such as subscriptions, bills, business credit cards and interest. Unmonitored, these can lead to significant expenses which will reduce your cash reserves.  

Whenever possible, prioritise paying bills and other essential costs. Keep borrowing to a minimum and, if you can, take on low-interest debt to avoid excessive interest payments.  

Setting up reminders for due payments or automating your payment schedules can help avoid these costs.  

Regularly reviewing expenses such as subscriptions or services and negotiating with providers can also prevent overspending. 

Maximise tax reliefs 

Tax reliefs on Corporation Tax may be available, depending on the size of your business and the sectors you operate in – including R&D tax relief or your Annual Investment Allowance (AIA).  

Engage a tax adviser to explore reliefs you might be eligible for and to identify qualifying expenditure or allowance expenses.  

A knowledgeable adviser can ensure you fully leverage these benefits to maximise financial efficiency. 

Use technology to your advantage 

If you can weather the initial cost of investment, technology can significantly increase your overall efficiency and cost-effectiveness – making it a strategic business decision crucial for staying competitive.  

Advanced digital tools enhance productivity, allowing your team to achieve more in less time. Additionally, software that tracks your spending and provides insights into improvements can be a real cost-saver in the long term.  

Technologies that support virtual collaboration and remote work can also reduce travel and office costs, contributing to a more flexible operation overall.  

Optimise your space 

Commercial space is a major cost for many businesses, so now is the time to review and optimise the space you occupy.  

If you have recently adopted a hybrid or remote model of working, take a look at whether you need all of your current space and consider renegotiating your lease for a smaller premises.  

In terms of your energy usage, try to reduce your consumption wherever possible.  

Simple actions like using energy-efficient lighting and ensuring electronics are switched off when not needed can make a noticeable difference. 

Cutting back on paper usage by transitioning to digital solutions like emails and collaborative software can also save money – all while supporting sustainability. 

Enhance internal talent  

The cost of recruiting and training new staff can be substantial.  

Investing in your current workforce through training initiatives and offering a flexible working environment can help minimise these expenses.  

Enhancing employee benefits may incur additional short-term costs, but these are generally offset by the savings from reduced turnover and the added value of a motivated team.  

For further advice on reducing your business costs and protecting your cash flow for the future, please contact a member of our team today.  

  

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