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Business Budgets: Essential Things To Consider When Planning Yours

Estimated reading time: 5 mins

Planning a new budget for any established business can take a long time. Indeed, many entrepreneurs dead that time of the year because they know the smallest mistakes could ruin their operations. Considering that, there is a straightforward guide on this page that should ensure bosses don’t overlook anything important. When all’s said and done, it’s sensible to ask associates to check any budgeting plans before they become finalised. People who leave no stone unturned should manage to navigate the next twelve months without issue. However, those who make even the slightest oversights could find themselves in trouble.

Promotional spending

Firstly, business owners will have to work out how much money they plan to spend on advertising and marketing during the next year. It’s always sensible to increase the budget every twelve months for the best results. However, that will depend on the level of profit the company has made during the last year. Just be sure to include the cost of all promotional endeavours the brand plans to try, and don’t miss anything important. Most entrepreneurs will want to:

  • Attend trade shows and exhibitions
  • Engage in social media promotion
  • Use PPC advertising services
  • Create mailing lists
  • Pay for TV and radio slots

Make a list of that nature, and then try to predict the costs of each idea. Overestimate as much as possible because it’s better to have money left over than to run out of cash after only six months.

Employee salaries

If business owners fail to pay wages to their workers at the end of every month, they are going to face a severe backlash. So, employee wages should become one of the most important elements when planning a budget. Ensure there is always enough money in the accounts to cover the costs. Also, try to predict if the company will need to employ more workers during the budget term. If that’s the case, include the cost of their wages too. Again, entrepreneurs should always overestimate to ensure they never run out of funds. It’s also worth considering:

  • Employee bonuses
  • Holiday pay
  • Sick pay

If people are unsure how much they spend on salaries each month, they just have to get in touch with the company’s accounting team. They should have all the information to hand.

Office running costs

There are many different costs entrepreneurs face when running an office. It’s vital they all get a mention in the new budget. Potential expenditure might include:

  • Premises rental fees
  • Council tax
  • Equipment maintenance
  • Energy bills
  • Printing fees

When it comes to printing, there are lots of options on the table. An obvious way to keep costs down is to switch to compatible ink cartridges. Refurbished Canon Ink cartridges are significantly cheaper but are just as good as OEM products. Still, there are many other techniques individuals could use too! So, just use some common sense and budget accordingly.

Technology investments

All entrepreneurs should want their companies to grow at a steady rate. That often requires people to purchase the latest technology to ensure they beat the competition and expand. Now is the best time to consider some of the tech investments the firm might make during the next twelve months. Does the company plan to invest in some new computer systems? Is there an advanced security measure that seems suitable? Research all the costs involved and then add them to the budget plan. New devices like Apple laptops can often cost thousands of pounds, and so it doesn’t make sense to leave things to chance. People who do that might struggle to pay for the items they require, and that could hinder their operation in the future.

New product or services launches

Business owners often have to spend a lot of money when launching new products and services. However, that is something all companies should aim to do at least once each year. The process ensures the brand remains relative and offers something new to its customers. Product and service launch costs often include:

  • Design fees
  • Testing costs
  • Marketing expenditure
  • Distribution costs

Looking back at previous launches is often the best way to determine the level of funding required. So, consider the last successful new product or service, and take a look at the accounting records. That information should help to highlight the amount the business might have to spend this time around.

Legal fees and other costs

No entrepreneur knows when they will find themselves in the courtroom. Still, commercial cases happen thousands of times every single year. For that reason, it’s essential that companies keep some money aside to pay for unexpected legal fees. If the business can’t afford to pay a decent lawyer, it is doomed to failure. There are many reasons individuals might have to ask for assistance including:

  • Employment disputes
  • Patent infringements
  • Trademark issues
  • Safety problems
  • Information theft
  • Any accusations of criminality

There are also instances in which a government or local authority might take a brand to court. With that in mind, the basic rule of thumb is that companies should receive twice the amount of funds they think are suitable for legal fees. That way, if a situation takes the company by surprise, it can still defend itself. Of course, some lawyers are willing to spread payments for their services, but that just creates a debt.

Entrepreneurs who use the tips and tricks from this article when planning their budgets should stand a decent chance of success. As mentioned above, the best course of action is to overestimate everything. That is because it’s impossible to tell when something unexpected might occur or if a project will cost more than predicted. There are, of course, financial advisors out there who could assist with the entire budget planning process. Sometimes it’s wise to get a fresh perspective before setting the document in stone. So, don’t be afraid of employing experts of that nature if there are any issues or uncertainties. Those people will help to ensure the business owner doesn’t make any silly mistakes or forget to include any significant expenses. Good luck!

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About the author /


Simon is a creative and passionate business leader dedicated to having fun in the pursuit of high performance and personal development. He is co-founder of Applied Change, a Business Change consultancy based in the UK. Simon is also an Ambassador for Gloucestershire business. Simon is an Associate Member of the Chartered Institute of Professional Development.

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