Welcome to the latest edition of Newswire – we hope you find it interesting and informative. All content is correct at the time of writing, but we suggest you speak with us for professional advice before acting upon anything that you read here.
Inflation is a word on many of our lips at the moment as the cost-of-living crisis continues unabated. While the headline rate of inflation – which hit 9.4% in June this year – relates to the average inflation rate suffered by individuals living in the UK, people’s actual rate of inflation in their pocket could be higher. Businesses are affected by rocketing prices, too, so now is the time to think about what you can do to reduce any costs your business incurs to improve your bottom line.
If your business was one of those badly hit by the pandemic, then you could be facing a double whammy now inflation has reached levels not seen in more than 40 years. Restaurants, hotels and other leisure businesses are often seen as luxuries when people are tightening their belts, and the knock-on effect could be severe.
However, every business should look at how it can reduce its outgoings at times like this, and there are many ways to do this.
If you own your office or building, you will have to choose which energy company you get your light and heat from. So, it might be worth shopping around for an alternative to see if you can get a cheaper deal – after all, things are likely to get worse rather than better in the winter.
Changing your supplier may not be an option for those companies working from leased offices. So, instead, you need to think about how to be more cost-efficient in your energy use. For example, you could install motion-sensor lighting in your washrooms. You could also encourage staff to turn off their computers and other energy-guzzling appliances when they are not in the office. It all adds up.
Not only will this mean they are doing their bit to help the business cut costs, but they will also be helping the environment, which most people would agree is necessary.
Many of your employees may be working from home more often now than before, and if it suits your business, then it might be time to consider increasing the number of staff offered hybrid or fully remote working.
Not only does this help reduce your office overheads, but it also improves the work-life balance for many people. It has also been shown to increase productivity – the opposite of what some bosses may think if people have the choice to work flexibly most or all the time.
The other benefit for your employees is that they will spend less on fuel or trains if they are commuting to work, giving them more money in their pockets to help with the cost-of-living crisis.
Anyone who incurs work-related costs not reimbursed directly by the company is entitled to claim these from HMRC. So, if you go down this route, ensure your employees are getting any tax deductions to which they are entitled. It all helps to deal with the current high prices in the UK.
If you are unsure how this works, your accountant will be able to help you and may also help your employees with their tax returns.
Helping your business and employees deal with the cost-of-living crisis in one hit can never be a bad idea. If you want to know more about how to make this work and what other measures you may want to consider to boost your bottom line while giving your employees more available cash, then please get in touch, and we can explain more about what measures you can take.