September 25, 2018

UAT Business Technology Professor Offers Lean Startup Advice

Business Technology Professor Offer Lean Startup Tips

Many UAT students will become entrepreneurs and start their own businesses after graduation. Professor Mark Smith teaches Business Technology courses at UAT and has some great tips for how to operate a business under the lean principles.

What is a lean startup? Lean startup ideals originated by author Eric Ries, which states that if companies invest their time into iteratively building products or services to meet the needs of early customers, they can reduce the market risks and sidestep the need for large amounts of initial project funding and expensive product launches and failures.

When starting an online business, you want to stay lean as you can. This includes expenses, efficiency and processes. Any additional overhead or extra time exerted can cost a first year startup company a chunk of its revenue.

Here are some key things that can be done specifically from on online standpoint to keep expenses down.

Only contract work that needs to be done. Instead of taking on employees that will be a regular fixed cost, contract workers out for a short duration of time. This cost can be deductible and you won’t have to focus accounting resources to pay them. If you’re specifically starting on online business look for the cheapest route for hosting, domain registration and website building. There are many free sites out there that will allow you to do much of this work without having to dig into your account. They might take you a bit more time to setup or create but you will not have extra costs.

Another tip specifically for an online business is to keep in home office for as long as you can. If you’re using your home as the business headquarters, you can deduct a portion of your utilities, rent and internet costs based on the amount of your home you are using.

The greatest costs to a business is labor, space and inventory. The goal is to reduce the cost of labor, space and product inventory as much as possible. That’s why contracted work is helps businesses stay lean. Working from home also saves you money while also limiting space for your inventory so you don’t house to much resources at one time.


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