Midyear has been and gone, so now it’s time for small business owners to assess financial habits and make a plan for a proactive financial year. Now is the time to be organised and ready for new receipts, new budgets and profitable system changes.
Plan for a proactive financial year
A proactive financial year means starting on the right foot. Mark some time out in your calendar to action your financial records and consolidate your books at weekly or monthly intervals. This will prevent things from getting on top of you, allow you to assess and manage your business incomings and outgoings more accurately, and can save invoices from remaining unpaid and forgotten.
You may prefer to outsource this sort of work to a bookkeeper. The benefit of outsourcing means you can focus your key strengths (and your time!) on providing for your clients. An experienced and professional bookkeeper or accountant may also be able to offer you advice on how to reduce your expenses and increase your profit.
With or without the help of a bookkeeper, it is important for accounting and tax purposes that you keep your receipts in a centralised location that is easily accessible to yourself and others in your business. Fortunately, with online tools and cloud storage, this is easier than ever to achieve. Gone are the days of overflowing shoeboxes for your accountant to sift through at tax time.
Cloud storage for financial records
Today’s world is driven by digital mediums, so why not store your receipts and invoices digitally too? There is a multitude of cloud storage websites available online that are simple to use, and most accounting software purchases offer cloud storage options inclusive in their platform.
Cloud storage can be used for many types of documents, not just receipts. You can store items such as images, invoices, corporate collateral and procedural paperwork in the cloud, which makes for easy access to mobile or out of office employees and contractors. Many small to medium businesses reduce costs by opting for virtual offices, and use cloud storage as a centralised business resource for staff and clients.
Going paperless with a cloud storage option also appeals to the greener side of the business world. Avoiding printing and copying saves time and also assists in saving the environment. Check out our great article on going green with your small business.
Be proactive and save time with financial software
Accounting software allows you to track and manage your business finances in detail and with simplified measures. You can enter your revenue invoices and bills payable each month while creating reports on how your financial situation is tracking with a profit and loss statement. Being proactive and regularly keeping your financials up to date is essential for tax return purposes and for making decisions for your business.
If you run a small or micro business, and haven’t been using any formal accounting software, now is the time to start so that you can create a proactive financial year this year and for years to come. Here are a few top financial accounting software options for small businesses:
- Xero: is very popular for small businesses and have a 30-day free trial. Create professional customised invoices, bank reconciliations, inventory, mobile app, payroll, purchase orders, track the time you are spending on projects, and more. Plans start at $25.00 per month.
- QuickBooks: have a 30-day free trial, so you can try before you commit. Send customised invoices, accept Paypal and credit card payments, use from any mobile device, capture your receipts so you can go paperless, track your income, expenses and generate reports. Plans start at $15.00 per month depending on your needs.
- MYOB: have a free 30-day trial and can handle GST, invoices, reporting, expenses and payroll. Depending on your needs there are packages starting from $27.00 per month. They are 100% cloud-based and have an auto backup to the cloud with the highest data security.
- Wave: is a great one for small or micro businesses as a starting point to accounting software. It’s free, and allows you to send professional customised looking invoices. You can track the status of your invoices and payments, link to your bank accounts and receive credit card payments. It only handles payroll for businesses in USA and Canada though, so an Australian small business with staff might be better off with another option.
Be proactive in other areas of your business
While finances are a high priority, you might also consider what other areas of your business could benefit from making this a proactive financial year. Are you spending too much valuable time on the phone when you could be servicing your clients? You might be interested in our Virtual Services that include phone answering and appointment booking. Have you outgrown your home office? We offer many small business solutions from meeting room hire through to serviced offices and hot desk options. SOI are here to help small businesses reach their goals. Call us now and speak to our friendly team about tailoring a package to suit you, phone 1300 318 680.
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