THERE is no denying we are going through a tough time here in the North-east. There are chinks of light but the end of the tunnel is still a long way off.
The bedrock of our region’s economy has taken an unprecedented, unexpected and unwelcome hit. Many tens of thousands of jobs have been lost in the oil and gas industry and this has impacted almost every type of business in Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire.
There has been a lot of concern about the impact of rising business rates which were set to hit North-east businesses disproportionately hard, as well as rising costs being faced in areas such as utilities. The Chamber, as well as other organisations, banded together to make the voice of the North-east heard on the business rates issues and this seems to have made a difference with the announcement of reliefs but there will likely remain question marks and uncertainties.
The chinks of light from the end of tunnel have been thanks to the business community coming together. Some other great examples of this are the Buy North East scheme and the efforts being made to create a Business Improvement District in Inverurie.
We need to do business differently. We need to be lean. Shedding staff is rightly seen as a last resort but balancing the books is becoming increasingly difficult for everyone from small, local business owners through to multinational corporations.
When times were good, reviewing utilities costs was not a priority for many. Now when every pound counts, businesses are realising they could be saving hundreds, if not thousands, by simply being on the best energy tariff.
There is a misconception that switching suppliers is difficult and time-consuming. Paying overinflated costs for gas, electricity and water have long been the norm. It is often seen as too much hassle to switch tariffs or suppliers and now, with the workforce depleted, it may seem an overly administrative and onerous process.
Energy brokers, such as ourselves, remove the hassle involved and save businesses thousands of pounds a year. We offer a free service, with commission taken from the energy provider, and do all the legwork so business owners and employees can continue doing what they are best at by focussing their efforts on surviving and thriving in this new economic environment.
Energy prices will rise. Factors such as the strength of the pound because of Brexit, rising coal prices and cold weather spells all impact the price of energy. Although the rates will rise, savings can be made. Every single business we have worked with has saved significant amounts by simply moving to the most efficient tariff.
What could saving on your energy bills help you save in your business?