Running a successful moving business is all about turning a profit. Even if your motivation is a genuine passion for helping people relocate, your business must be profitable to stay open. This is especially relevant if you’ve just started your company – about 50% of new small businesses in the US fail within 5 years and you don’t want that to happen to you. So what can you do to improve your chances? Well, a good business plan is a start. You’ll also need a good marketing team that can generate top moving leads and convert them into paying customers. But that’s not all – you’ll also need to learn about resource allocation planning. This skill will help you make the most of what you have which will be useful for years to come.
What is resource allocation planning?
In simple terms, resource allocation is how you distribute your time, money, workforce, equipment, and other resources among different tasks. How many people are going to help Mrs. Hudson move to Florida tomorrow? Is a few hundred dollars enough to spend on Google AdWords for moving companies this month? Do you need five or ten trucks for that commercial relocation scheduled next week? These are just some examples of what resource allocation in a moving company might be about.
When creating a proper plan, however, you’ll need to think about much more than just this. Your resource allocation plan will need to include both individual projects you’re working on (such as different relocations and storage facility rentals) and company-wide tasks (such as marketing and recruitment strategies). You’ll also need to plan for a variety of resources – money, time, facilities, workforce, equipment, tools, software, and anything else your company uses.
A step-by-step guide to resource allocation planning
If you want to allocate your resources well, you need to plan in advance. The exact decisions you make will, of course, depend on the specifics of your business. But there is a certain planning process you can follow to ensure the decisions you’re making are the right ones.
Step 1: know your goals and capabilities
When allocating resources, the most important questions to answer are what you need to do and which resources you have available. Typically, your business plans will encompass a certain time period. In the time period that you’re planning for, how many projects do you have coming up? What are you trying to accomplish? How big, time-consuming, and demanding are your goals? The answers to these questions will help you create a list of tasks you need to allocate resources to.
Then, you need to consider the resources themselves. How many workers do you have available on any given day? How much money can you invest in this time period? Which tools and equipment do you have at your disposal? These answers will help you create a list of resources to allocate. Once you know what you’re working with, it’s time to decide where to dedicate which resources.
Step 2: decide on your priorities
No matter how well-financed, well-staffed, and well-equipped your moving business is, all resources in this industry are finite. So it’s important to prioritize the most important projects when allocating resources. When you’re just starting out, investing in moving software is a must because it’ll make all subsequent work easier. A sufficient marketing budget is also important, especially when you’re looking to expand. But remember that money is not your only resource. Schedule your workers well so you always have enough people working on every relocation and make sure not to overbook your equipment and facilities too.
Step 3: think holistically
Even if you have a supremely important project coming up, you must always keep track of your entire business when allocating resources. Company-wide expenses will affect your resources too. You always have to have enough to pay for renting and maintaining facilities and equipment, for example. Changes like vacation days, hiring, and training will also have an effect on available resources. So don’t lose sight of that.
Step 4: be realistic
You may be tempted to increase your workload in order to maximize your profits. But don’t take on more than you can handle. You only have so many resources at your disposal. If you spread them too thin, you risk projects taking too long and work quality suffering. Your clients won’t be happy if you promise to move them on a certain date and then call to cancel when you realize you have no movers available at that time. Instead, be realistic with regards to what you can and cannot do.
Step 5: keep track of your successes and learn from your failures
Resource allocation is not something you can just do once and then stop worrying about. You need to monitor how well your plan goes and adjust it when things go wrong. If you realize you’re struggling to find new customers, you’ll need to invest in a better digital marketing agency. When you find yourself turning down potential customers because you’re so busy, consider hiring more workers. If all your storage units are currently full, find another storage facility. Keeping track of what’s working and what isn’t is part of resource allocation planning.
Pro-tip: allow for flexibility!
In the moving business, unexpected things happen all the time. Last-minute relocations, injuries on the job, equipment breakdowns… And who could have predicted the coronavirus pandemic and its consequences this time last year? The point is that you have to be ready for anything. Your resource allocation plan cannot be set in stone. Sometimes, you’ll have to change things on the fly. So leave some room to be flexible – keep some extra funds readily available and have a list of movers you can contact for help on short notice.
Why is resource allocation planning important?
Resource allocation planning helps you distribute the resources you have in the most effective way. It ensures that things are getting done fast, well, and cost-effectively. It’s about getting the most out of what you have. In the long run, it will save you money, boost your profits, and help your business grow.