If you're a manager with a fleet of dedicated staff, no doubt the economic situation, and cutbacks in both the public and private sectors may have you worried. It seems that the most obvious and catastrophic saving that companies tend to make is by cutting staff numbers, forcing redundancies, or moving entire departments abroad where the contract for the work is cheaper. If you're facing cuts but don't want to face firing your staff, you could look for alternative ways to save and reduce your budget.

1. Overheads and keeping track

The soupy financial world of "overheads" is what often catches companies out when they're on a budget. Whether it's petty cash or offering free coffee to your team, some things will have to be cut. If there are biscuits and/or lunches at every meeting, you can cut them back - people don't expect to be fed at work and it's not a legal requirement! Petty cash needs to be kept an eye on - if people are buying stationary just because they are inadvertently taking bits of it home or losing it behind the photocopier, it can add up to a big bill at the end of the year. Encourage emailing instead of printing to save paper, and when you do, have it set to duplex. Start a recycling campaign to make people aware of waste and cut down your overheads. Look at the office space itself. Did you pay hundreds for the pictures on the walls or some artwork? Why not let the staff put the party photos up instead? This does the same for staff morale but costs much less.

2. Travel, hotels, expenses and meetings

If your team are always working or conducting meetings remotely, try to introduce video calling, Webinar, webcam sessions and conference calls to keep the costs down. Otherwise you'll end up paying travel and meal expenses as well as potentially paying for renting out a remote conference centre, too. Hotel prices aren't getting any cheaper in city centres so if someone can go back home instead of staying overnight "on business" (which incurs more associated expenses), then this is preferable. Some may not like it, but it's better to have people working more out of the head office than it is having them walk out of it for good.

3. Review your technology

Have you got old laptops or desktops lying around that have been replaced or only being used as a hot desk twice a month? It might be a good idea to refurbish it and sell it. Are your corporate software licenses on auto-renew for packages that you're not using enough to warrant keeping them? Then get rid of them. Have you handed out Blackberries instead of mobiles to your senior staff but they're just using them to make and receive calls? Swap the handsets for a cheaper one. In a similar vein, call your mobile provider and see if they can give you a better deal - they would rather give you a discount than lose your business.

All these are simple but effective ways to cut costs in the office. Over the course of a year, it might save you enough to be relieved of that redundancy fear and keep you, and your business, going strong.