One of the toughest parts about the end of something, is what to do with the leftovers. If you’re finishing a project, then the leftovers might be cleaning up or disposing of materials. If you’re wrapping up a multimedia presentation, how do you go about archiving your project and assets for later? And when it comes to budgets, how do you spend the surplus wisely?
“Use it or lose it.”
This has got to be one of the most stressful phrases when it comes to managing finances. If you’re like me and are always looking at new technologies, office upgrades, and tools, a surplus budget is incredibly easy to spend. But in reality, what we want to focus our spending on is being able to get our maximum return on our investment.
When you look back at this past year, or even the last few years, does one thing stand out as a repeated avoidable expense? Did you experience some kind of downtime that ended up costing you time or money due to your inability to recover? This might have been due to a shortage of spare parts on hand, lack of proper maintenance, or a complete miss on equipment that should have been tested but wasn’t.
There is a lot to keep tabs on, no matter the size of your facility or team. Having to pay a premium for after-hours parts in an emergency will hurt but making that decision in the heat of the moment is something that will stick with you when it comes down to your budget. Spending a little more at the end of the year to stock up on a few sets of common fuses or breakers can really pay off in the next year. Also, allocating some of your surplus to something like testing your generators can save you dearly in the event of a real emergency.
Whatever way you choose to spend your surplus budget is entirely up to you. Maybe you have bigger plans for next year and have your annual maintenance and emergency testing all squared away. And if that’s case, celebrate! But whatever you do, make sure you make your budget work for you. Don’t forget about all those avoidable expenses from previous years. Use the end of this year as a chance to prepare for 2019 and start with your best foot forward.