If you’re a tradie in Australia with consistent work coming in, but you’re acting as a one-person band, you’re not alone. While being self-employed comes with its perks, it can also be a lot of work. Not only do you have to complete jobs as they come in, you have to find new clients, keep your accounts in order and make sure your business runs smoothly. With all this to think about, how do you find time to get ‘off the tools’, so you can actually grow your business?
Growing your business takes time. So any time reclaimed from administrative tasks that can be automated should be. That means finding tools to help you automate things like job management and quotes, payroll and invoicing, and marketing and social media.
For example, Tradify – designed specifically for trade and service businesses – lets you quote, schedule, track, and invoice jobs on the go. Cloud-accounting software program, QuickBooks Self-Employed, is another great tool for sole traders. It lets you automate mileage tracking, create and send invoices, and categorise business and personal expenses straight from your mobile phone. You can even integrate it with the Tradify app to easily transfer invoices, bills, payments, customers, and suppliers directly into QuickBooks.
Most tradies are good at what they do, but they’re not expected to be an expert at everything. You might be a master builder, but not know the first thing about building a website or creating a memorable brand. [Link to: How to get the branding right for your trades business]
If you can’t do it, don’t waste your time trying to; outsource it to someone who can. The cost of your own valuable time will likely be more than the cost of paying an expert to do it more quickly. And that’s not to say it’s always expensive. Some tasks, like graphic design, are generally affordable if you use a freelance designer.
If you try to do it all yourself, you’ll burn out. Where possible, delegate tasks to full-time employees or, if you’re expecting a particularly busy period, consider taking on a contractor [Link to: Employee vs Contractor Serviceseeking.com article] or an apprentice to help out.
Contractors are a great resource for tradies who need specialist skills or are only looking to hire someone on a specific project. Usually they work for themselves, using their own tools and equipment, and paying their own tax and super. An apprentice, however, is an affordable way to hire a full-time employee who works in exchange for on- and off-the-job training.
Being a small business owner is hard work, but there are plenty of things you can use to get you ‘off the tools’ and into the driver’s seat. Once you’ve nailed this, use the extra time to focus on becoming a top-rated tradie to help grow your business.
For more tips on how to grow your business, check out these resources.