Strategies for Small Businesses to Streamline their Cash Flow

Top Strategies for Small Businesses to Streamline their Cash Flow

Sure, there are a myriad of different financial tools and metrics you can use to monitor and evaluate your business and keep it on track. One of the most important is your operating cash flow. A lot of businesses use their cash flow data as a primary means of analyzing how well or poorly the company is performing. Moreover, managing your cash flow can also help you discover different trends and patterns in the overall results, which allows entrepreneurs to address crucial business shortcomings or capitalize on its strengths. 

Let’s look at some sure-fire strategies small businesses can use to improve their cash flow. 

Segment Your Business Statements into Three Sections 

One of the most optimal ways to evaluate your cash flow performance and how it affects your overall liquidity and operations is by categorizing your cash flow into three sections. These are: 

  • Investments 
  • Operations
  • Financing  

After that, it’s going to be simpler for you to calculate the total cash flow to derive a sales ratio. According to Jared Weitz from United Capital Source Inc., this is going to help you identify the real value of each dollar in your total revenueWhen you analyze all three categories, you’ll get a comprehensive understanding of where exactly you’re gaining money and where you are losing it. This is also going to be a great metric when it comes to adequately budgeting for different areas and increasing cash flow.   

Make the Cash Flow Process Easier  

As per small business coach and author Melinda Emerson, there is no question that most small businesses tend to be “mom and pop” establishments, where the owners are not particularly well versed in finances or do not have much experience on the subject. This is why it is important to make things more streamlined and easier . 

Such businesses understand a more basic approach to cash flow calculation, which is mainly measured in number of days. This form of cash flow calculation is child’s play because everybody is familiar with calendars, and that makes it simpler for businesses to break down their investments into days. 

Go for a Periodic Payment Plan 

As a business, there is nothing better than to have liquidity to inject into your working capital to keep things running. So, if you are offered an installment plan, take it. 

What this essentially does is help keep a certain amount of cash flow within the business to make payments every month. Then you can pay your business’ utilities and bills while still having room to make your monthly payments.  

Don’t Forget to Monitor Your Cash Flow  

Another way you can know how to improve cash flow is constantly and consistently being in the loop of how much money is coming in and going out. Sadly, many small businesses neglect this. 

This strategy is simple. Keep an eye on everything that is coming into the business and everything that is going out. You can do this on a daily basis, which is going to be a bit daunting – so the best option is calculating everything on a weekly basis.  

Prioritize Your Cash Collections and Inflow 

According to presentations skills specialist Bruna Martinuzzithe best way to gauge the performance of your business is to closely monitor your accounts receivables as well as keeping a bird’s eye view on the outstanding sales. Small businesses should offer discounts for early payments in order to speed up their collections. 

You have to understand that your customers are also looking for a win-win situation, and there is nothing better than to offer them a cash discount if they pay you as soon as possible. Plus, you are going to always know when to expect an inflow from your customers, boosting your cash flow.  

Bottom Line 

Although many businesses consider cash flow as a secondary issue by focusing more on marketing and sales, as a small business looking to gain a competitive advantage, you have to be able to stay afloat. 

Without a streamlined cash flow system, you are going to have a working capital deficit. And that means you will not be able to pay for more immediate and crucial components of the business. 

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This article is taken from our parent company Aepiphanni Business Consulting’s blog section. Check out for more information here. 

WistBooks Financial Management. Wise + Strategies to take your business financials further.(TM) 

WistBooks provides integrated Bookkeeping, Advisory, and Financial Management services that leverage financial data to help small businesses execute a winning strategy. Through Quickbooks Online cloud accounting, financial dashboards and regular online advisory sessions, we support business owners and leadership in maximizing their financial decisions to maintain and support company growth.

We are offering all new clients a 10% discount on any service for the first year. Remember to mention WistGift to receive your discount.

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Stars, Dogs, Cows & Question Marks: Your Product Mix Strategy​

Stars, Dogs, Cows & Question Marks: Your Product Mix Strategy


Your company’s product mix is the list of everything that the company sells. We often look at the product mix from a contribution rate or percent of each type of product that a company offers. The product mix strategy is the method by which you make a decision about how much of which products to sell, and which ones you may want to get rid of.

Boston Consulting Group developed a matrix – known as the Growth Share Matrix – which is used to categorize a company’s portfolio of products (or business units)  as a collection, and divide them based on performance.

Performance is denoted into four quadrants based on growth potential and market share. The categories are Stars, Question Marks, Cash Cows and Dogs. 

Stars are the products you want to keep. These are the best products you’ve got; the ones you are likely to put the greatest share of your marketing budget behind, and the one that you will get the best return from as you continue to develop and refine the product according to customer demands.  Not only is their current return excellent, they have continued high growth potential.

Cash Cows are offerings that you also want to keep. They have high market share, but low growth potential. These are the ones which will typically have a high profit margin and a rather predictable degree of stability.  They are like comfort foods for your markets; even if there are other products out there, your offering is one they find appealing.  You will continue to get money out of these products that you can use to invest into this offering and other areas of the business.

Dogs are your offerings that you should really consider getting rid of.  With both low market share and low growth potential, you will likely find that investing dollars into other offerings will yield a greater return. Keep in mind that over time, many of your product offerings will eventually end up in this category, which is why it is essential to continue to innovate.

The last category – Question Marks – also known as “Problem Children” – are those that have low market share but high growth potential. It is likely a great product that no one knows about.  This may be a result of under-capitalizing their product marketing or business development, difficulty in reaching their target markets, or they could be products that have a very specific use for a limited audience (or other factors). 

Regardless of which quadrant your products lie in, it will be important to watch them because they can move into one of the other three quadrants, which will change your investment strategy.  If you look at a typical product lifecycle, and apply this model to each of your products, you will have a better idea of how to treat each one and what to expect from their performance.

Source: https://lukasweber425.wordpress.com/the-secrets-of-marketing/product-life-cycle-stages-and-strategies/

WistBooks Financial Management. Wise + Strategies to take your business financials further.(TM) 

WistBooks provides integrated Bookkeeping, Advisory, and Financial Management services that leverage financial data to help small businesses execute a winning strategy. Through Quickbooks Online cloud accounting, financial dashboards and regular online advisory sessions, we support business owners and leadership in maximizing their financial decisions to maintain and support company growth.

We are offering all new clients a 10% discount on any service for the first year. Remember to mention WistGift to receive your discount.

We would love to hear from you.  Please share your thoughts and comments below.

Negotiation’s Impact on Working Capital Management

Negotiation's Impact on Working Capital Management

 

While most businesses pay attention to increasing revenue and improving margins, one way to accurately assess a company’s financial health is through its working capital. Even Cassio Casil, Managing Director of Corporate Client International Banking for J.P. Morgan Commercial Banking, states that even though this figure will not usually appear on an income statement, the working capital can still amount to significant revenue for a company.

However, having good working capital also means that one needs to have the appropriate interpersonal skills to achieve such a feat. This is where negotiation and building good business relationships can play a part in efficiently managing a company’s cash flow—something that is explained later on in this article.  

The importance of efficiently managing working capital

Simply put, the working capital is a figure that represents the available operating liquidity of a company. It is calculated by the current assets minus the liabilities and hints to the cash available for the business’ daily trading operations. From this definition alone, one can see that working capital is a determining factor of a business’ operational success or downfall.

Deutsche Bank explained that working capital management is how companies handle hidden liquidity reserves. This encompasses inventory management, debt management, accounts payable recollection, and assessing the payments due and a company’s accounts receivable.

Keeping a close eye on this financial metric gives companies the advantage to maximize their overall operational efficiency. Investopedia notes that the working capital’s objective is to minimize the cost of capital spent on the working capital while also making the most out of the return on the company’s current asset investments.

For a company to have a positive working capital management, the sufficient balance between assets and liabilities should be prioritized. This often means that there is an excess of current assets over liabilities, giving businesses the freedom to pay off short-term liabilities immediately.

How negotiation impacts company liquidity

Reaching positive working capital does not end with assessing financial assets and how to maximize operational flow. Negotiation and effective communication with both supplier, customer, and other parties that directly affect the company’s financial standing is also crucial.

Negotiation is the heart of every business relationship. A business owner and a supplier participate in a give-and-take agreement that benefits both parties. In fact, a study conducted by Thomas Atkin and Lloyd Reinhart from the Sonoma State University and University of Tennessee, shows that the more cooperative both parties are, the higher the satisfaction for both sides.

The same principle can be applied to working capital management. Namely, when it comes to payment terms in a supplier-business relationship. Mary Duffy, the Chief Financial Officer of a financial process automation solutions firm called SoftCo, stated that negotiating with your supplier to achieve longer payment terms can help with maintaining positive working capital. This gives businesses access to the needed inventory without completely depleting cash reserves.

To obtain a fair deal, clear communication on the credit and payment terms must be reached between company and supplier. It is also important to show how a lengthened payment settlement can benefit the supplier to make them more amenable to the idea.

The same can be said when it comes to a business’ relationship with its customer. Not paying the full amount to the supplier upfront also means that your inventory falls under the accounts payable category. Inventory must be liquidated in order to prevent the supplies from turning into a liability.

One must be sure that a customer is happy with the payment terms without the business having to compensate for a less-than-ideal agreement. As an example, a prospect seeking a number of handcrafted wooden furniture may like the idea of payment terms to extend longer than the industry’s standard. However, this harms the liquidity of the furniture business’ finances as they have designers, carpenters, wood suppliers, and other specialists to pay. 

In conclusion, having good bargaining skills can impact a company’s working capital management. Inventory will be well-stocked so as not to lose a customer without overstocking to the point that it becomes a company liability. At the same time, a business owner does not have to worry about depleting the company’s cash reserves as they have negotiated to pay at a later date. This gives the business more flexibility in day-to-day operational costs and future investments.

 

WistBooks Financial Management. Wise + Strategies to take your business financials further.(TM) 

WistBooks provides integrated Bookkeeping, Advisory, and Financial Management services that leverage financial data to help small businesses execute a winning strategy. Through Quickbooks Online cloud accounting, financial dashboards and regular online advisory sessions, we support business owners and leadership in maximizing their financial decisions to maintain and support company growth.

We are offering all new clients a 10% discount on any service for the first year. Remember to mention WistGift to receive your discount.

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Key Factors When Pricing Services

6 Key Factors to Consider When Pricing Services

 

Is your service company profitable? How profitable? How do you know?

Pricing for service-based businesses is often elusive for many business owners. If you look at the price for consulting or marketing, for example, you will likely find pricing and pricing strategies all over the place. If they are based on hourly fees, some firms will focus on a low price strategy, others will be more “middle of the pack” – basing their pricing on average market rates, and others present themselves as premium service offerings. If they are project-based, they may price based on estimated hours or even based on the future value of the service.

Regardless of the pricing strategy, in order for a company to be profitable, it is essential for the company to have a method for creating it.  Below are some key principles to consider when establishing pricing for your service business.

  1. Profitability: Profitability is always going to be the most important element of your pricing strategy. If you are working on a cost-plus basis, where your pricing strategy is based on covering all of your costs – including a markup for operations, make sure to add in profit margin. Take a look at this article on business profit by thebalance.com
  1. Cover ALL of the labor: While most business owners are conscious about covering the costs of their staff, sometimes we as business leaders don’t cover the cost of our labor. You can use a cost calculator like this one provided by Tsheets by QuickBooks.
  1. Operating markup: while many firms will opt to have some type of operating markup, it is important to have a method of determining what that number should be. If you look at your operating costs for the month versus your total revenue for the month and find that you’ve been doing a 10% markup but your operations actually cost your 15%, you’ll need to make an adjustment. Your operating expenses are eating into your profit!
  1. Competitors: Find the firms that are most closely aligned with what you do – both direct and indirect competitors and learn what they are charging. Sometimes you may find that they are charging a lot more than you are and you are leaving money on the table! Keep in mind that the unique value that you provide may be something that your customers would be willing to pay extra for.  Understand the benefits and disadvantages to this approach.
  1. Market: Your market has a mental expectation associated with what you will charge. Simply stated, if you charge more than they expect, it will be difficult to close them. If you charge less, then they will likely be suspicious of your abilities. Side note: the alignment between your market’s impression of your company and the price they will be willing to pay has everything to do with how the company is positioned.  Positioning is part of what influences a customer to buy from you.
  1. Industry: Your industry may influence how you are able to charge for your services. For example, if you are in construction doing bid work, you may find that certain customers will want to see line-by-line what they are paying for, including any markup that you plan to include. Which means that if you don’t provide that information, you won’t be included in the bid opportunity.

Your company’s pricing strategy requires an investment in time to complete, but it should result in a pricing model that will allow your company to sustain.  Having a process or methodology in place will help for when the market shifts.  Not fully understanding your pricing strategy could lead to under or over pricing and make it very difficult for you to maintain solvency.

  1. When pricing services, it is important to ensure you have considered the following factors to ensure profitability with each transaction.
  2. Regardless of the pricing strategy, in order for a company to be profitable, it is essential for the company to have a method for creating it.
  3. Profitability is always going to be the most important element of your pricing strategy.
  4. Find the firms that are most closely aligned with what you do – both direct and indirect competitors and learn what they are charging.
  5. Your company’s pricing strategy requires an investment in time to complete, but it should result in a pricing model that will allow your company to sustain

 

WistBooks Financial Management. Wise + Strategies to take your business financials further.(TM) 

WistBooks provides integrated Bookkeeping, Advisory, and Financial Management services that leverage financial data to help small businesses execute a winning strategy. Through Quickbooks Online cloud accounting, financial dashboards and regular online advisory sessions, we support business owners and leadership in maximizing their financial decisions to maintain and support company growth.

From now through June 2020, we are offering all new clients a 10% discount on any service for the first year. Remember to mention WistGift to receive your discount.

We would love to hear from you.  Please share your thoughts and comments below.

Revenue vs. Margin: Why Profit Margins Matter

Financial Goals: Target Revenue or Profit?

As with any other company, businesses often look forward to increasing revenue. A 2015 study conducted by SME lender Fleximize shows that 49% of the companies surveyed are optimistic that their monthly revenue will increase in the following year.

This shows that business revenue is often used as a basis for entrepreneurial success and profitability. However, this belief is something that should be reconsidered as profit margins may play a bigger role than you think.

Why profit margin matters

Fundera perfectly describes what profit margins are—this is the percentage that shows how much of your revenue is actual profit, or money earned, as opposed to business costs and expenses. Overall, profit margins are often used to gauge a company’s financial health.

According to Vend’s 2018 research, the average gross profit margin in retail is 53%. The report illustrates that even though beer, wine, and liquor stores raked in the highest revenues, their margins were the lowest with an average of around 35.64%. On the other hand, beverage manufacturers only brought in an average of $26,159 monthly revenue but their profit margins were the highest out of all other industries at 65.74%. This signifies that most companies in the beverage manufacturing industry were able to achieve a good balance between gross revenues and margins.

To put everything into perspective, a high annual income may also mean that you are spending more on monthly operational expenses in order to boost your business further. This can lead to a low-profit margin, which means that your company may only break-even when it comes to sales. Since margins are tight, this ultimately gives you less flexibility in case you plan to expand in the future.

Profit margins may also play a key role in identifying issues that need to be resolved. To cite an example, a low margin despite having a team working round-the-clock may indicate that there might be a problem in your pricing structure or expense management. Despite staff productivity, the company is not earning enough revenue because they priced their services too low.

Achieving higher margins 

From this alone, one can infer that cutting down on expenses is the solution to gaining higher profit margins and improved company flexibility. However, Investopedia also highlights the fact that decreasing costs does not mean better profit margins. In most cases, this can even lead to lower revenue.

This raises the question: How can you increase profit margins instead of simply relying on boosting revenue?

Putting all your energy on marketing and selling higher-end products can help. Business motivational speaker Tony Robbins encourages entrepreneurs to market products that bring in the most income and help increase your profit margin percentage, especially since quality products inspire brand loyalty.

Keeping a close eye on product inventory is also a must. There was a time when retailers suffered a globally accumulated total loss of $1.1 trillion due to overstocks and out-of-stocks. When an item is simply sitting in your warehouse, your business cannot add it to your monthly profit margin. Overstock can also lead to markdown sales—which can lower your profit for the sake of selling the item. Similarly, repeated out-of-stock items can affect customer loyalty. Order fulfillment takes longer and there are fewer opportunities for impulse purchases. 

Finally, reducing costs is a faster way to further boost margins. The less your monthly expenses are, the more you offer your company the opportunity to expand in the future. This may mean relocating your company to an office with lower monthly rent or something as simple as investing in one project management tool that fulfills two features rather than two programs for separate needs.

In conclusion

Oftentimes, business owners prioritize increasing revenues as it is believed that the higher the income, the more successful a company is. However, your profit margins can give you an overview of how efficient your company is, which makes it crucial to consider when planning your business strategy. Ensure that you consider maintaining good profit margins that will protect your cash flow, and make the business grow. 

 

WistBooks Financial Management. Wise + Strategies to take your business financials further.(TM) 

WistBooks provides integrated Bookkeeping, Advisory, and Financial Management services that leverage financial data to help small businesses execute a winning strategy. Through Quickbooks Online cloud accounting, financial dashboards and regular online advisory sessions, we support business owners and leadership in maximizing their financial decisions to maintain and support company growth.

From now through June 2020, we are offering all new clients a 10% discount on any service for the first year. Remember to mention WistGift to receive your discount.

We would love to hear from you.  Please share your thoughts and comments below.

What You Need to Know Before Getting Good Debt

Considering a loan to survive? Here's what you need to know before getting healthy debt

Oftentimes, the word “debt” causes warning bells to chime in people’s heads. What others might not consider is that debt isn’t confined to a single category—that’s why there’s good debt and bad debt. Even American businessman and financial author Robert Kiyosaki believes that you have the chance to get higher returns when you use other people’s money. 

If getting a business loan is something you’re considering, here are a few things to keep in mind before signing over the papers. 

Search for government subsidies that fit your business and industry

As a business owner, you’re eligible for various types of loans and subsidies. However, not all these loans will serve your type of business. For example, you’re a service-based digital marketing agency. You won’t benefit much from equipment loans or real estate financing in this case. 

However, what might work for you is getting invoice financing during a slowdown of cash flow caused by inconsistent client payments. This ensures that you’ll have a continuous income stream to support manpower and recurring payments for software. 

Also consider the latest government programs that offer enough grace periods. Make sure the loan you plan to take can accommodate your business’ cash flow strategy.  

Avoid capitalizing on the interest’s payment

There’s loan interest and then there’s capitalized loan interest. When you take a loan, the responsibility of paying, both the money required to acquire the asset and its interest, on time lies on your shoulders. 

Reimbursing the funds is one thing but when you defer payments for the interest, there’s a chance that it will eventually snowball into an amount that’s even bigger than your intended loan. Before signing the papers, make sure you’re confident that the interest rate is within your means. 

Don’t go into debt if you don’t have a solid plan 

Many entrepreneurs will highlight the importance of having a business plan to ensure that you’re not straying from your business goals. The same thing applies to debt. Before even considering a loan, make sure that you’ve already decided on where to allocate the borrowed funds. 

Be cautious of taking on a loan just to tide over the company as this can be a one-way road to being in debt for years. A good kind of debt increases your net worth. If the loan has no future value, it depreciates and it’s considered bad debt. 

Keep this in mind as this is one of the things a lending company will look for when considering your application as it gives insight into your ability to repay the loan.  

Explore different banks and institutions

Speaking of interest rates, take a second look at the institutions you plan to borrow from. The interest rate of each bank differs from the other and that’s one factor you should consider. 

You may also opt to not put all your eggs in one basket and explore non-traditional sources. One good example is debt crowdfunding, a form of funding where you borrow from a group of investors and eventually set up regular payment schemes with interests afterward.  

There are multiple options present in the market that will help in funding your business and additional research is a must to determine which best suits your needs. In this case, crowdfunding can be considered as a business won’t have to go through an arduous process of getting approved. However, raising the money may take awhile—not the best option if you need immediate access to funds. 

Consider the reason behind the rate provided 

From the cash reserve ratio set by The Fed to the anticipated market inflation, there are many factors affecting interest rates that are outside your control. However, the lender will also base on your business’ status before dropping a number. 

Investopedia explains pretty well how one becomes a subprime borrower—a thin credit history with little to no action and a score below 670—making their application high-risk. 

This then causes their interest rates to skyrocket. For a reduced interest rate, ensure that you have a good personal credit score beforehand and that your business has a proven track record of profitability before applying for a loan. 

When it comes to building a business, good debt can open opportunities that were previously financially inaccessible for many entrepreneurs. In times of financial crisis, applying for a loan may be the only thing that helps your business stay afloat. 

But taking on a loan can be a huge responsibility that prompts any entrepreneur to take a few factors into consideration. To make sure that you’re taking in a healthy kind of loan, business growth should be at the forefront of your decision. Look at your loan as if it’s your key to unlocking opportunities, knowing that the potential value outweighs the debt price. 

To learn more about Financial Management and how WistBooks Financial Management can be an asset to your business, click the link below to set up an appointment. 

WistBooks Financial Management. Wise + Strategies to take your business financials further.(TM) 

WistBooks provides integrated Bookkeeping, Advisory, and Financial Management services that leverage financial data to help small businesses execute a winning strategy. Through Quickbooks Online cloud accounting, financial dashboards and regular online advisory sessions, we support business owners and leadership in maximizing their financial decisions to maintain and support company growth.

From now through June 2020, we are offering all new clients a 10% discount on any service for the first year. Remember to mention WistGift to receive your discount.

We would love to hear from you.  Please share your thoughts and comments below.

Benefits of Managed Services Provider MSP

COVID-19 and Beyond: Short & Long Term Benefits of Managed Services Provider (MSP)

Our company has worked with outsourced business partners for many years.  Do you know why? Working with outsourced business processors has allowed us to scale up or down efficiently dependent on the state of our business.

If you think about the current state of things, your company may have had to scale back on its employees, which is never good. In many cases it creates a hardship for the employee and certainly does not put the company in a positive light.  Not to mention, employees who remain will also be effective.

Even if the employee can come back, the trust factor may not be there, and you will likely not have the employee you had when the role was initially terminated.

My son’s company has had to manage this type of situation. As the impact of COVID-19 began to hit, they had to begin laying off some of their employees. Unfortunately, instead of following best practices, the way they handled it essentially added insult to injury, implying that the team member was not as good or as valuable for the company. My son, a documented top performer fell into this category and was let go. He expressed his frustration and disappointment but immediately began looking for a new role.  In about a week his company called him back. While he gladly went back and he still works very hard, he now works with 1 foot out the door. The energy and positive attitude he had been known for is no longer present.

But this is business…and business happens.

Believe it when people look at sites like Glassdoor.com and see negative reviews about your company there will be very well qualified employment prospects that will simply pass the company by.

An alternative to this might be outsourcing certain business processes. Or going a step further and engage with Managed Services.

According to an article on Visionet, while BPO firms tend to provide a resource or resources for a specific process, such as outsourcing tech support or bookkeeping, for example, a Managed Services firm will provide a comprehensive set of services that allows the business or department to operate at a higher level and more efficiently then a company can do itself.

Yes. This is an activity typically applied to IT.  No. It is not exclusive to IT.

Yes – the same approach can be applied to other areas of business operations.

For example, if you were to look at marketing: you need someone to build and maintain your website, someone else to do SEO and a third to do your social media posts.

You can go through the process of hiring the people individually to do the work. You will have to be responsible for making sure they are trained, and they are delivering results based on their promises and your expectations. This is going to be an expensive and inefficient process since you must hire them individually.

You can hire a BPO firm to provide you with the resources. They will cost you a lot less, but you will still need to manage and direct them on what they need to do. Essentially, you will need to know more about marketing than they do to get the results that you are looking for.  If there are activities that lie outside of their core abilities, you will have to go back to the BPO firm and get another resource.

You could hire a Managed Services firm that offers marketing services. This will be a team that will help you design a marketing program that will be best for your organization, then set it up and run it. They will have the ability to swap out resources within the established rate to ensure that the right people are doing the right jobs within the confines of the project. In this case, they will help to define the expected results and report progress toward the results.

From a short-term perspective, when change happens in the organization, to continue a company will benefit from working with a Managed Services firm for the following reasons:

1. The ability to vary your company’s expenses

Managed Services firms can work on variable contracts meaning that they only get paid for the work that they do or the time they spent working.

2. The variability of talent and capabilities

You may find that your financial management services provider suddenly needs to focus less time on bookkeeping activities due to a slowdown and participate in a planning session and provide different financial models and help with projections of different scenarios.

3. Extended Capabilities

Sometimes significant changes require that a company re-invent itself or its service offerings. A Managed Services firm can provide the company with additional capabilities that could serve to keep the company afloat during the crisis.

From a strategic perspective, a Managed Services firm also has its place:

  1. The Managed Services firm has expertise in the area that they are in and will typically get better without your firm baring the cost of additional education, certifications, product development, recruiting, etc.
  2. The Managed Services firm typically has a vested interest in the company’s success and can be instrumental in their contribution to the corporate strategy.
  3. The Managed Services firm will typically try to find ways to do things better to get better efficiencies and better results
  4. The Managed Services team will provide a higher level of integration into your firm, providing ongoing visibility, accountability and reporting, which leads to greater efficiency and bottom line: better results, according to an article in Network Consulting Group.

Having access to an MSP can be a critical component to your business operations for both the short and long range.  Your company will achieve greater efficiencies through increased capabilities, capacity and expertise while reducing departmental costs by hiring multiple resources at a single, fixed cost. Given the current virtual environment many companies are being forced to adopt, the need to maintain or increase productivity and the need to reduce costs, now is an ideal time to explore this as an option.

To learn more about Financial Management and how WistBooks Financial Management can be an asset to your business, click the link below to set up an appointment. 

WistBooks Financial Management. Wise + Strategies to take your business financials further.(TM) 

WistBooks provides integrated Bookkeeping, Advisory, and Financial Management services that leverage financial data to help small businesses execute a winning strategy. Through Quickbooks Online cloud accounting, financial dashboards and regular online advisory sessions, we support business owners and leadership in maximizing their financial decisions to maintain and support company growth.

From now through June 2020, we are offering all new clients a 10% discount on any service for the first year. Remember to mention WistGift to receive your discount.

We would love to hear from you.  Please share your thoughts and comments below.

The new CFO role  for the digital era

The new CFO role for the digital era

From our experiences working with clients across the country, we’ve learned that when a CFO is going to take part in leadership decision-making, they tend to rely on analysis of historical and economic data in order to spot trends and make projections and recommendations for the company. Which sounds like a reasonable approach. 

Unfortunately, in this era, the traditional data that CFOs have relied on is not enough. It is not complete.  Small and large businesses alike are now members of a global community. As a result, situations that impact a region halfway around the world may directly or indirectly influence even the smallest businesses in ways that will require consideration in the decision-making process. 

Obviously, the level of data that is available won’t be as valuable to some companies that may be fine with maintaining the status quo. Unfortunately, for many of these businesses a global impactor like a pandemic can easily put them out of business.  But for those companies that seek to stand out in the marketplace – to be extraordinary – the extra effort to analyze both internal and external data in the planning process – including understanding the ramifications of global impactors will give these companies a significant advantage in their operations. 

In the article, “A new CFO for a new era,” authors at KPMG describe how the role of the CFO is changing, specifically with regard to access to and interpretation of the plethora of business data.  According to the article, CFO’s in mid-market companies must be able to: 

  • Embrace extreme automation – automate core finance and accounting processes and reduce labor requirements by up to 70% 
  • Learn the language of predictive analytics – anticipate changes in order to make change less disruptive 
  • Link the company strategy, financial projections and management metrics – participate in or be aware of the company’s strategy 

The role of the New Era CFO has been elevated and rightfully so.  They are much more a critical part of today’s leadership teams and assets to the strategic planning process than ever before. The insight that can be provided to the leadership will be invaluable as companies continue to grow, expand and enhance their global reach. It is the companies that can leverage these individuals that will likely be the ones that embrace greater opportunities and become extraordinary businesses. 

While many smaller companies cannot embrace hiring a full time CFO, many are in reach of working with an outsourced Financial Manager who can provide a similar level of support to that of a CFO.  The Financial Manager will provide financial management support and services appropriate for each company for their revenue level and phase in the business lifecycle. Automation, predictive analysis and participation in strategic planning, financial projections and management metrics will leadership with essential information and decisions on financial vehicles, investments and growth modeling will help support the company as it charts its path to the future. 

For the driven company that is determined to stand out in the marketplace, engaging a Financial Manager early on will help to ensure that the company can grow in a manner that is financially sound while reducing risks associated with growth and being prepared to take on challenges that will impact the company.   

To learn more about Financial Management and how WistBooks Financial Management can be an asset to your business, click the link below to set up an appointment. 

WistBooks Financial Management. Wise + Strategies to take your business financials further.(TM) 

WistBooks provides integrated Bookkeeping, Advisory, and Financial Management services that leverage financial data to help small businesses execute a winning strategy. Through Quickbooks Online cloud accounting, financial dashboards and regular online advisory sessions, we support business owners and leadership in maximizing their financial decisions to maintain and support company growth.

From now through June 2020, we are offering all new clients a 10% discount on any service for the first year. Remember to mention WistGift to receive your discount.

We would love to hear from you.  Please share your thoughts and comments below

Financial Management for Small Businesses

Growth Investment Opportunities Small Business Owners





can Utilize

As your business continues scaling, you’ll find the opportunity to explore further growth with enough profits and finances to keep your business afloat. Managing your profits and making sound investments within your team and company are essential in promoting additional growth. While there are plenty of investment opportunities for small business owners to explore, we’ve laid out a couple of them in this article:

1. Digital Marketing

With the continuous change in the digital landscape, more and more businesses have invested heavily in their digital marketing efforts which include search engine optimization, social media marketing, e-mail marketing, and much more. This allows businesses to consistently connect and accommodate consumers while providing them with a platform where they can get to know your brand. E-commerce website development has also been a developing trend for businesses to be able to reach a wider audience and showcase their products and services. An article from Aepiphanni says that it can even cut down on employee related costs.

Figure out which channels are most effective for your business and utilize investing in digital marketing to grow your business further.

2. Employee Training

With additional funds on hand, you can also consider investing in your employees and boost their productivity and skill levels with trainings and workshops that are relevant to their roles in your company. By investing in your own people, you not only increase their skills but also, makes them feel more valued for what they can contribute to your business which in turn, increases their efficiency in their current roles.

A paper from the International Journal of Social Sciences & Educational Studies has cited the direct correlation of training and development to job satisfaction and how it positively impacts businesses.

3. Launching Networking Events and Seminars

Placing your budget into launching events wherein you can build relationships with other entrepreneurs can also be a way of diversifying your financial assets. Many business owners might think that networking should come after you’ve build your business up, however, by networking, you actually boost your brand and label yourself as an expert in your field.

People like doing business with people they know. Networking allows you to get involved within your local community and industry. By getting known through these events, people are more likely to do business with you and even send referrals your way. Not only is it possible for you to get to know more clients, networking also serves as a way for you to get to know other businesses which may lead to favourable deals for your company.  Or the possibility of establishing strategic alliances.

4. Accounting and Finance

The two words that give headaches to every business owner.  Coming from a growing small enterprise, it might be time for you to invest in someone to do the accounting and finances. The circumstance must have been easier when you were working with a team of two or three people, but as your business grows, you’ll find working on your finances to be a bigger hurdle.

By either hiring an in-house accountant, or outsourcing your accounting needs to an accounting firm, you get the expertise that your business requires as well as advice on how your business can do better financially.

Effectively managing your finances will yield the best results and in the long run, create even more money for your business. Not sure where to start? WistBooks provides a free 30-minute consultation to help you get started. Get in touch with us and start your business’ financial journey today.

WistBooks provides integrated Bookkeeping, Advisory, and Financial Management services that leverage financial data to help small businesses execute a winning strategy. Through Quickbooks Online cloud accounting, financial dashboards and regular online advisory sessions, we support business owners and leadership in maximizing their financial decisions to maintain and support company growth.

From now through June 2020, we are offering all new clients a 10% discount on any service for the first year. Remember to mention WistGift to receive your discount.

We would love to hear from you.  Please share your thoughts and comments below

5 Small Business Survival Tips During the Outbreak


5 Tips to Keep Your Small Business Alive During the Coronavirus Pandemic

 

The effects of the coronavirus have swept across the marketplace both locally and globally and a lot of them are feeling the losses from the pandemic. Based on data gathered by a time tracking and scheduling application, 50% of local businesses in the US have already closed operations while hourly employees are working at less than 50%.

During these uncertain times, panic is understandable. But what every successful entrepreneur must do right now is to forge a solid game plan. Check out five of our tips to keep your small business surviving and thriving during the coronavirus outbreak:

1. Create a plan

Now this sounds basic, but what does this plan contain? Every business owner must now plan ahead of the pandemic and, if you haven’t already, create an emergency preparedness plan or a business continuity plan.

This plan needs to outline the steps that you, as a company, decide to take if the pandemic significantly impacts your business.  It also needs to lay out procedures that you will be following in the scenario that a disaster strikes. Be sure that you are able to tackle these points in creating your plan:

  • What you’re doing to protect your staff
  • What actions you will take if an outbreak arises in your business
  • Ways your staff can get in touch with you in case of emergencies
  • Possible outcomes for you

2. Protect your people

If possible, this entails creating a measure that will allow your employees to work safely from their homes. However, not all businesses can afford to lose people that are on the ground. Ensure that your employees feel safe and secure with their jobs. Get in touch with them and ask about how their personal lives are affected by the coronavirus and let them know your plans to support them in case anything happens to them or their families.

3. Strengthen external communication

In an interview with risk management expert, Nicholas Bahr, he mentions, “During a crisis, your biggest commodity is trust.” Make sure that you provide all your stakeholders, clients and customers, and the public at large specific information about what you are doing as a business to fight the pandemic. If possible, include any solutions or recommendations that you might have that may seem useful. Thanks to social media platforms, you can easily reach out to them and provide necessary reassurance and comfort.

4. Review risks

Assess every part of your business and how it might be possible for the virus to penetrate your operations. You might want to create a more tedious sanitation process or remind your staff about other measures that they can do in order to avoid getting infected. Review your financial risks as well with regards to continuous operation and how you can balance out your profits with your costs. Draft up a list of things that you need to have checked as soon as the coronavirus pandemic is over to fully resume operations.

5. Be productive

Utilize any spare time to improve your business and your processes. There may be a product that you can develop which you’ve only realized in crisis or had processes you could have eliminated when you were operating at full before this all started. Take advantage of this time to maximize your productivity and make your employees feel that they are valued by engaging with them for their opinions.

If your business needs additional funding during the outbreak, the US government has provided millions of dollars in loans for small business to help them ride out the pandemic. You can check out how you can apply for a loan with the Small Business Administration here.

Is reviewing your finances too much for you during this time of fear and panic? Our team at Wistbooks are fully prepared to help you manage your finances and find ways on how you can maximize them to keep your business afloat until this all blows over. Interested? Get in touch with us today.

WistBooks provides integrated Bookkeeping, Advisory, and Financial Management services that leverage financial data to help small businesses execute a winning strategy. Through Quickbooks Online cloud accounting, financial dashboards and regular online advisory sessions, we support business owners and leadership in maximizing their financial decisions to maintain and support company growth.

From now through June 2020, we are offering all new clients a 10% discount on any service for the first year. Remember to mention WistGift to receive your discount.

We would love to hear from you.  Please share your thoughts and comments below.