If you have owned a business for any length of time then you know that growth does not always follow a smooth trajectory. Sometimes your business-and your profits-both grow quickly. Other times, you may find that the cost of your labor needs increase more quickly than your profits. If you find yourself in this situation it is essential for you to find a way to get your labor costs under control. You cannot sustain increasing labor costs for very long without increasing profits. In order to get control of your labor costs you need to take a close look at your actual labor needs and find ways to meet those needs for less.
Take a close look at your actual labor needs
Have you hired more people than you currently need? Are there people on your team who have the ability to take on more responsibility at work? The next step in this process is to be extremely cautious about brining on new internal employees. There is a significant cost that comes with finding, hiring, and training a new employee. Once you have an employee hired and trained there are also the ongoing costs of salary and benefits to consider. All of these expenses can contribute to your labor costs growing faster than your business. Before making the decision to hire, consider all of the alternatives in an effort to minimize labor costs.
Find ways to spend less on labor costs
The second step you should take if your labor costs are growing faster than your business is to find less expensive options. Can you pay less for some of the tasks you need done? For example, many tasks that previously required in-house employees can now be done remotely. Accounting and customer service are two examples of important tasks that con be completed from a location outside your office. Freelancers and outsourcing companies can often do high quality work at a lower cost than in-house employees. One reason for the reduced cost is the fact that you will save on the overhead costs related to having internal employees. The second reason is that you can use freelancers and outsourcing companies on an as needed basis. This prevents you from paying for unproductive time. The costs savings you can realize by using an alternative labor option, such as outsourcing, can be significant.
It is easy for labor costs to get away from you. The desire to keep up with everything that needs to get done can lead business owners to hiring additional employees prematurely. Hiring too early or unnecessarily are the two main factors that can lead to labor costs growing faster than your business. If you are currently in this predicament you can reverse it by looking carefully at your actual labor needs and filling some of them with less expensive labor options.