Small business owners are constantly looking for ways to cut costs. Inventory, payroll, and operating costs should always be scrutinized to see where money can be saved. There is one area, however, in which it is ruinous to skimp. If you use any equipment to operate your business (printers, computers, delivery vans, backhoes, etc.), these items need to be kept in good working condition. If your equipment isn’t working; you aren’t working. Service contracts should be kept up to date and routine maintenance should be religiously performed.
In the office products business, one segment of our customer base was commercial printers.
Obviously, the lifeblood of our customers’ businesses was the equipment on which they printed their jobs. However, during the economic downturn a few years ago, I saw many of these operations put their businesses at risk by letting their equipment fall into disrepair. In situations like this, an owner must be able to shift resources to the areas that are the lifeblood of the business…even if ultimate survival requires downsizing the office or cutting back on labor.