Smoke and mirrors – what does and doesn’t save your business money

Smoke and mirrors – what does and doesn’t save your business money

BusinessBasics Managing Director Adam McDean recently had the opportunity to speak to a room full of business owners, manager and entrepreneurs at the Hunter Business Chamber about the reality of what does and doesn’t save a business money.

“We often are called into a business to help them with their processes after the low hanging fruit has gone,” Adam said. “What I mean by that is that the most simple cost savings for the business have already been made, so now they’re looking at other ways to cut costs.”

Adam shared what can only be described as a frightening statistic whereby 70-90% of the steps in service and administration processes add no value to the end customer – instead they cause delays and customer dissatisfaction.

An example Adam provided from his own life was when he booked in an appointment. The staffer spent time checking his details – including his email address – and then stated that a letter would be sent confirming the appointment (which was the following day). A letter, which would arrive after the appointment had already occurred.

Despite having Adam’s email address on file, it was not a part of the process of this organisation to provide a confirmation via email.

Just think about the cost savings that could be achieved if they shifted to emails (for those customers who want it).

  • Less admin costs for someone to print, stuff the envelope and send.
  • Savings on paper costs from less printing
  • Savings on postage costs.
  • More immediate communication with customers.
  • The ability to more easily track communications with customers.

And this isn’t even an exhaustive list!

BusinessBasics are specialists in helping businesses achieve leaner processes – to remove the issues outlined above! One of the tools they often use are apps. However Adam was also very frank about ensuring businesses don’t just jump onto the first shiny app they seem.

His suggested steps before signing up for a new app, were to think about the processes

  • Is the step necessary?
  • If I use an app, how does that affect the other steps?
  • Can I automate the interaction of steps?

To explain this in context Adam once again used a personal example, this time from his own organisation.

He was very upfront about the onerous process that used to be involved in quoting. See the below diagram. All the red items are manual processes.

Process Map


After research into the different types of automations available, he and his team were able to implement the below workflow.

Process Map



All the yellow items are automatic processes. Can you see the significant shift from manual to automatic processes?

The results are a primarily programmed system, whereby the quote is entered on to a simple form, the steps required are undertake automatically and the result is a beautiful automated management report.

What a result!

If you would like to talk to Adam and the BusinessBasics team about your processes and how they could become leaner, please contact us.