Saving Money in the Short Term versus the Long-Term Payback

This post originally appeared on and has been republished with permission. 

When it comes to running a business, not all goals are the same. Is your business about one-time projects, or do you want repeat clients? Do you plan on expanding to other geographical areas? Or do you want to stick to your local area? 

Once you figure out what your business is about and how you intend to run it, you can then focus on your budget. In doing so, you’ll discover services that you can invest in for the short-term that you’ll see an ROI later on down the road. Saving money in the short term versus the long-term payback is always tough on new businesses. It can make or break some companies, though, if they decide wrong and go with the cheaper options in the beginning. 

To begin, define your short-term budget and use it to invest in help. You can guarantee that it’ll pay off in the long-term.

Create a Budget for the Short-Term

The period where a business determines their short-term budget is within the first three to six months. Entrepreneur Magazine says that business budgeting is one of the most powerful tools to utilize and is what ultimately controls your business. “Starting with the first month, establish specific budgeted dollar levels for each category of the budget. The sales numbers will be critical since they’ll be used to compute gross profit margin and will help determine operating expenses, as well as the accounts receivable and inventory levels necessary to support the business.” 

Many times, we see customers coming back again and again because they quickly realize that as part of their short-term budget and goals, they need a transcription service. Having transcripts on hand gets their business off the ground quicker than they would if they were to try to do document audio from their meetings themselves.

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    Create a Budget for the Long-Term

    Here is where you define your big picture costs. Work out a 12-month budget that lays out what you intend to spend each month, and what you estimate you’ll make. 

    Inc. Magazine lays everything out in an effort to help small business owners get an idea of how to start a business with a budget. “If you’re missing the targets set out in your budget, you can use the budget to troubleshoot by figuring out how you can reduce expenses like labor or new computers, increase sales by more aggressive marketing, or lowering your profit expectations.” Use your long-term budget to help guide you in determining where to spend your money.

    Investing in Services for the Long-Term Payback

    Your long-term and short-term budgets have been set. Great work! Look into services that can help you reach those goals while being mindful of your budget. 

    You’ll quickly find that when you start out you will need help with aspects of your business that you don’t have time for, or don’t know how to do yourself. Forbes advocates to not be afraid of asking for help from a third party. “They’re the experts in what they do and you are the expert in what you do. You’ll find that your business will grow faster when you put your pride aside and ask for someone to lend you a hand.” Marketing, accounting, and transcription services are some of the most popular ones to consider. Take transcription for example.

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    If you’re in law enforcement or run a law firm, having certified legal transcripts ready to go will make you extremely well-prepared. Clients will recognize that and be more likely to give you their business.

    Rather than taking time away from working on your business plan to complete tasks that an expert can do, hire them! You’ll see that investing in them in the short term will pay off in the long run.

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