Saving, investing and making money with technology

Time Is Money: 4 Simple Things Worth Buying to Save You a Ton of Time

Any expense requires time to pay it off. Many purchases do not return direct monetary value.

Of course, purchasing something like food has its own benefits, providing energy and nutrients so you can focus and be efficient. A super-comfy mattress could have a similar payoff by helping you sleep better and awaken well-rested.

These items may not be returning their investment directly, though their benefits are contributing to greater productivity and comfort, which can save time and consequently help make money.

Beyond the obvious, like a good diet and comfortable mattress, there are several things worth investing in that can save you a ton of time. They return their value quite well, especially for those in business:

Outsource Avenues

When done correctly, outsourcing provides high-quality results at a low cost. Many businesses would benefit greatly from outsourcing, though are apprehensive when budgeting for it. In reality, there are a number of areas where the differences between outsourcing and keeping it in-house are negligible, making the lower-cost option of outsourcing desirable.

  • Manufacturing — Perhaps the most common area for outsourcing, manufacturing makes sense, since creating a tangible good is often more dependent on machinery and instructions than actual workers. As such, outsourcing manufacturing to a lower-cost area in China can make sense, with many products costing 30 to 80 percent more to make in the U.S. Strive for a long-term relationship with a particular manufacturer to make this outsourcing process more efficient.
  • Tech Work — Web development and virtual assistance are also ripe with outsourcing opportunities. Technological knowledge is often universal, so as long as the outsourced rep can speak English, a similar service can be provided for a portion of the cost. Plus, VOIP now makes it so there’s no international calling barrier, making outsourcing technology work cheaper than in the past.
  • Graphic Design  — If a graphic, logo or layout looks good, it reflects well on your business, regardless of the country of origin. As a result, using platforms like Elance, Fiverr and 99 Designs can be a great way to acquire quality graphic design at a cheaper rate than working with a Stateside designers.

Outsourcing these three areas can result in the most savings compared to keeping these services inside the U.S.

Contact and Phone Lists

Compiling a list of relevant contacts for your business’ marketing campaign or general outreach can be dull, repetitive work requiring many hours. As a result, buying pre-compiled lead lists can be extremely beneficial and time-saving.

With such services, you can specify by area and audience, working alongside the broker to secure a list of contacts that are a great fit for your individual business.

Business Internet

For a small additional fee per month, business Internet can provide a wide array of benefits compared to residential Internet, which many small businesses are still using. With many ISPs, business Internet customers have their own 24/7 helpline and can have day-of service to resolve technical issues.

Business Internet packages also provide higher speeds, which — combined with superior service — makes it worth the cost.

Plants and Office Accessories

Mundane office and desk settings have been proven to elicit less productivity than a desk filled with color and personal keepsakes, providing a glimpse of great memories in the midst of hard work days. As such, don’t be wary of purchasing a plant, special lighting or other desk décor to make your workspace feel more homey.

It can be the difference between feeling burnt-out and turning in poor work and feeling fresh and ready to impress.

Since time is money, the four areas above are good places to invest for enhanced productivity and overall business results.

Some of them are small adjustments, like buying business Internet and office brighteners. Others, like department-specific outsourcing, can be bigger.

Regardless, they all share the quality of being well worth their price.

Image by Unsplash

Kayla Matthews

Kayla Matthews writes about gadgets and technology for MakeUseOf, Inc. Innovate and The Gadget Flow. Follow her on Twitter to read her latest posts: @ProductiBytes

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