Choose Your Location Carefully
There are two primary choices when selecting the premises for an engineering business: home and away. Many entrepreneurial engineers choose to start out by working from home. It’s cheap, convenient (there’s never a shorter commute to work than a walk down the stairs!) and it’s fantastic if you’re trying to fit your business around family life.
However, many people dislike working from home, since it doesn’t allow them to properly separate themselves from their work at the end of the day. It also doesn’t allow any room for business expansion, so if you choose to work from home, you will need to bear in mind that relocation may be necessary in the future.
Hone and Widen Your Skills
If you’re out on your own there is no one else to blame should something go wrong. Therefore you should ensure your skills and abilities are absolutely first-rate to ensure that you’re always achieving the best results. You should also never stop learning, particularly if you have plans for expansion. For example, those proficient in welding should also become accommodated with profile cutting, if profile cutting is not already part of the skill-set. There are certain skills that are natural progressions and such avenues should always be followed if you want to keep on top of your game and be the best you can be.
Choose Your Staff Carefully
When it comes to expanding and recruiting other people into your company, it’s important that you choose the right people, since choosing the wrong ones could cost hefty amounts of money. In engineering an interview stage should not only be verbal, it should be practical too. There’s also no harm in suggesting a paid trial to ensure this person is definitely the one you’re looking for, before deciding to take them on personally.
However, there is also the option to choose less experienced staff, in order to keep costs down. Those fresh out of College or University should be keen and rife with knowledge, and will not be requiring salaries as high as those with more experience. There is also the option to employ an apprentice. Running an apprenticeship is a very cost-effective of increasing your manpower, but it will involve a lot of training in the skills your company employs. This could involve welding, profile cutting, electrical and mechanical skills as well as even management skills.
Seek Advice From Experienced Entrepreneurial Engineers
Never assume you know enough about the industry and how to run a successful business – there is always someone who will know more than you. Therefore you should do all you can to get chatting to people who have made a success of their own engineering business and find out the ins and out of how they’ve done it. Ideally, you should want to make a friend of a fellow entrepreneurial engineer so that if any questions or problems arise in the future, you have a more experienced person you can turn to for advice.
Ensure You Have A Sufficient Number Of Clients
It might seem obvious but before you go out on your own, you should make sure you will have the business in place to keep you up and running, and keep food on the table. This entails carefully working out your budget, which should include all the business start-up costs such as equipment, insurance and premises, as well as life’s necessities such as the cost of your home, bills and food. You can then work out exactly how much business you need in order to cover these costs, and have a small amount left over for luxuries and emergencies.
This article was written by Amy Fowler on behalf of Westermans International. Amy writes on a variety of topics including business set up and engineering skills such as profile cutting.