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How to keep your office costs under control

By Shaun Higgins, managing director of IML

Setting up and running a business is costly. The last thing you need is unnecessary extras driving your bills up even higher.

Around half of start-ups fail in the first five years, but unexpected bills can be problematic for all businesses, regardless of how long they’ve been trading.

The office itself is a culprit when it comes to added costs. The following tips on how you can save money in your office could lead to a noticeable difference in your bills by the end of the year.

Turn computers off at night…

When you leave the office for the day, it’s easy to log out of your computer without a second thought. But that means your machine is running overnight, using power.

No matter whether it’s just you who’s working from home, or if your office has a few employees, leaving computers on standby over a period time will result in you wasting an unnecessary amount of money.


Start getting into the habit of switching your computer off at the end of the working day, and you’ll cut your energy costs.

Or switch to laptops

Alternatively, you could replace your computers with laptops. They consume up to 80 per cent less electricity than desktop PCs, and run on a fifth of the energy.

Whilst there will be an initial outlay, the fact you’ll be using less energy means you’ll make that money back – and save some extra – over time.

Plus, laptops are more convenient. Whether you have an external client meeting, or just fancy a change of scenery, you can easily take your laptop with you.

Print double-sided

Despite offices talking about going paperless to save costs and be environmentally friendly, in some instances there will still be a need to print documents. In fact, 73 per cent of small businesses use the printer at least four times a day.


By keeping copies of documents online as opposed to printing them off, you’ll be able to keep your costs lower. However, there will be times when you need to print, in which case, there are a couple of things you can do to save yourself some extra pennies.

If you’re printing a document that has more than one page, cut down on the amount of paper and print on both sides. Also, print in black and white if possible, so that you won’t have to replace the pricier colour cartridges as often.

Sit by the window

If your office has windows, then you could save yourself money just by moving your desks over to it.

Not only is natural light better for your wellbeing, you won’t need to turn the lights on all day. It also means that come summer, rather than switching the air-con on and wasting energy, you can simply open the window for some breeze.

Turn off the lights

This is so simple, but it can make a big difference. Switching off a single light can save you £84 a year, resulting in substantial savings over time.


No matter whether you’re working from home or have an office with a team of people, get into the habit of turning the lights off when you’re not in the room. If there are a few of you, ask the last person leaving to turn off the lights.

To save extra pennies, consider switching your halogen lights for LEDs, as they last longer and don’t require as much electricity to power.

When running an office, costs are unavoidable. However, there are ways to reduce your bills; and whilst these quick and easy tips won’t require much effort from you, they will save you money, leaving you with extra cash to spend elsewhere.