It’s a controversial decision that can positively impact your business or leave you paying unemployment taxes if things don’t go as planned.

Likely one of the biggest challenges that small business owners face is knowing when to hire. However, one of the most overlooked and cost-effective solutions could be deploying sales and marketing automation solutions at a fraction of the cost to an annual salary.

As a business owner, you’re always looking for ways to increase profits, grow your company, and get an edge on the competition. You want to find ways to do more with less and increase your bottom line. So, how do you know when it’s time to add an employee to your team or when you can get by with sales and marketing automation?

The Pros and Cons of Hiring an Employee:

There are a few things to consider before you decide whether to hire an employee or deploy sales and marketing automation. The first is cost. Hiring an employee obviously comes with a salary and benefits costs, which can add up quickly and repeats and increases every year. And even if you’re able to find someone who is willing to work for relatively low pay, there’s no guarantee that they will be any good at their job. In fact, it’s often said that the cost of bad hires can be twice as much as the salary of a good one. So, if you do decide to go the traditional route, make sure you take your time in finding the right person with the experience to achieve your desired results.

The second thing to consider is training. Even if you’re able to find someone with the necessary skills, they will likely need some training before they’re able to hit the ground running. This can be time-consuming and expensive, so it’s something else to keep in mind when making your decision.

The third thing to consider is maintenance. Once you’ve gone through the trouble of finding and training someone, you then must keep them motivated and on track so that they continue to do their job well. This can be a full-time job in itself! If you’re not prepared to invest the necessary time and effort into maintaining your staff, then it might not be worth it to hire someone in the first place.

The Pros and Cons of Sales & Marketing Automation:

Now let’s take a look at sales and marketing automation and see how it stacks up against hiring an employee. The first thing to consider is that it’s a fraction of the cost. While there is an initial investment required for setting up automation software, it will almost certainly be less than the cost of hiring even one employee. Additionally, there are usually nominal ongoing fees associated with automation once it’s been set up. Once it’s running, it will continue to do its job without any additional input from you. And best of all automation won’t call in sick, it won’t show up late or request to go on vacation when revenue is down or before a big deadline.

The second thing to consider is training; while some basic knowledge of how sales and marketing automation works is required, it’s far easier (and less time-consuming) to learn than training someone from scratch on how to do their job.

The third thing to consider is maintenance; unlike with employees, there is very little maintenance required once sales and marketing automation has been set up. You might need make occasional adjustments as your business changes over time, but for the most part, you can set it and forget it!

“We often encourage small business owners to look at their investment in automation as a minimum of a 5-year investment. We have many clients that are using the same automation, systems, and processes that we deployed 8 years ago. And that automation is consistently driving ROI and efficiency in their business. And that same automation has provided some of our clients a 10x – 20x ROI of their initial investment. Now, think about what that investment would have cost the small business if they chose to hire a salaried employee. It could have likely cost them upwards of $60,000 a year annually over the last several years,” said Jason Benedict, Co-Founder of the Automation Agency.

Conclusion:

Business owners should always be looking for ways to streamline their operation and increase efficiency. One way to do this is to automate as much of their sales and marketing process as possible. However, there are certain tasks that are better suited for human beings. So, how do business owners know when it’s time to add an employee or when they can get by with sales and marketing automation? By considering factors such as the type of task being performed and the frequency with which it needs to be performed. Also doing a quick comparison of the cost of implementing automation software vs hiring an annual salaried position is an easy identifier. With these key factors in mind, business owners can make an informed decision about whether they should deploy automation or bring on an extra pair of hands.

Ready to get started with automating simple tasks like collecting leads, automating follow up emails, scheduling appointments, and sending invoices so you can get paid faster?

Request A Free 14-Day Trial To Keap, (the all-in-one CRM for Sales & Marketing Automation) and receive a complimentary 1-hour assessment of your business from the Automation Agency.

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