Deep down inside, I know a lot of people probably think saving the big bad company money is a bad thing. Why would I want to save the cable company money? Don't they gouge me every month when I get my bill? I take a different look at it. Sometimes saving companies money can save you money, or make you money. My favorite example of this is paperless billing.
I work with billing a lot at my company. We spend hundreds of thousands of dollars every month sending out paper bills and processing paper checks. We are always look to cut costs, and one of the most logical ways to do that is to help customers move to paperless billing. Automatic deductions from your checking account when you pay online without a bill only costs the company about 3 cents. Mailing and processing checks costs around 50 cents.
How does this help you? First off, it saves you a stamp. That is 42 cents, or whatever they cost today, that you can keep every month. That is $5.04 per year at current rates. If you pay a separate power, phone, and cable bill, that is $15.12 per year. Assuming you subscribe to these services from when you are 20 to when you are 70, that is $756 over your lifetime. That is just the stamps. You also have to pay for the checks. Over 50 years that is 1800 checks. At $6 per box of 200 checks, that is another $54 just for the paper you send in.
Paper billing is also one of the biggest sources of identity theft today. Someone can grab that bill or check from your mailbox and start printing checks that link to your account. That can cost you money and be a big hassle to clean up.
Also, imagine the carbon footprint of cutting down trees, processing the paper, exhaust from the mail truck, and so on. If you care about saving the planet, like me, this is yet another reason to save the big company money.
Today, companies are laying off thousands of people without blinking an eye. If you company had an extra $500,000 per month, they could pay a lot of people. Do you have a friend or neighbor that works for a big company in your city? While it is not directly related, you could be saving their job.
What else do you do that costs companies money? Paperless billing is just one example of how you can help yourself, the economy, and the company without leaving your computer. Just something to think about. Do you have any other good examples? Please leave them in the comments.