Saturday, June 14, 2014

Stop Wasting Money in Your Home Office

Controlling Hidden Costs When Working from Home

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At-home professionals face a challenge that many of their office bound colleagues do not – managing the costs associated with their home office. Business professionals who work in a traditional office setting very rarely worry about the different costs the building accrues over time such as printing, electric, and software costs . At-home professionals need to take these costs into consideration and, luckily, there are some simple ways to help control the costs of working from a home office.

Leverage Available Technology

It is no secret that software packages can be very expensive. More often than not, corporate companies have contracts with software developers to get these programs to their associates on a discounted basis. But, at-home professionals do not always have those connections but still need basic and updated software to do their job. A great way to avoid these steep costs is by researching and utilizing free software that is available through a number of big name companies. Google, for example, offers online spreadsheet, presentation, and word processing tools that account holders can use for free.

It is also no secret that travel is expensive – gas for vehicles, plane tickets and other travel services can definitely have at-home professionals taking a big hit right to their wallets. Instead of traveling for every client or colleague meeting, considering using an internet based conferencing tool. These tools allow people to meet face to face over the Internet and are usually much less costly than the gas it would take to travel to every meeting an at-home professional has scheduled during a regular work week. Some of these programs even allow meeting members to share documents and data live through the internet.

Minimize Printing Costs

One of the largest expenses that businesses have is printing costs. This includes the printing equipment, ink, maintenance and, of course, paper. At-home professionals face these same challenges with printing costs but they also have an advantage when it comes to reducing them. Pay close attention to exactly what is being printed in your home office – do all of these emails really need to be on paper, or can they be filed digitally? This is the type of question that should be asked every time you reach for that print button. By analyzing what is needed on paper, it can help to majorly cut down on this cost.

Additionally, there can be a huge cost benefit to investing in a high-quality printer or multifunctional device. Although these high-end pieces of equipment will cost more up front, they can often lead to big savings down the road. Newer printers are using less and less ink to print documents meaning that less cost will be incurred replenishing the supply. Not to mention, newer printers are fast and can also perform multiple jobs just as printing, scanning, faxing and even sending emails – this can help increase an at-home professional’s efficiency which can lead to a boost in productivity and even profits.

Many corporate professionals never wonder or worry about the costs associated with their office space. At-home professionals, however, pay much closer attention to where money is being spent. Leveraging technology and reducing printing are two very effective ways to control the costs associated with running a home office. Not only do these techniques reduce spending, they can also increase efficiency and productivity overall, which can have a great, positive impact on the business and its profits.

What? You don't have a home office because you haven't started your own legitimate home business yet? Then you need to talk to Stacy O'Quinn! If you already have an idea, he can help you as your business mentor. If you need ideas, Stacy has opportunities for everyone that wants to work from home. For more information, click here.

*Photo Courtesy of Jeremy Levine via Creative Commons License

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