Financial Year End Advice for Small Business
As the end of the fiscal year looms, our thoughts flicker to the task at hand. For those who are organized, it’s relatively easy. Accounts are all in order, firmly tucked into spreadsheets and accounting programs and ready to face the final number crunch. For others, the financial year end is a succession of panic ridden moments, wondering how-in-the-expletive you’re expected to take care of business and appease the taxman. Fortunately, even the least organized among us can still get it together with plenty of time and a few nerves to spare.
Financial Year End: Planning Ahead
Planning ahead is always the best strategy, but depending on how busy you are and how much help you have with your day-to-day accounting, this may not have been possible. The good news is that if you haven’t yet reached the end of the calendar year, it’s not too late.
While this year is coming to a close, you can be making plans for next year. Find out exactly what your tax situation is for the current year, and determine how it might change in the next twelve months. Planning ahead for your financial year end may pay off very well in the long run.
Take Advantage of Tax Saving Programs Before December 31
Have a chat with your accountant to find out if there are any tax-saving moves you can make before the December 31 deadline. Chances are there are ways you can reduce your tax payable without having to jump through any major hoops. Some examples of this might include making charitable donations, contributing to retirement savings plans, or purchasing needed business equipment so that you can apply the expense to the current year.
Look Back: Review Detailed Cost and Sales Breakdowns
Find out what your year was really like. By taking stock of the things that you do and finding out if they were profitable, you can streamline your activity for next year. Check the value of your inventory, if you have such a thing. If items in inventory have depreciated, this can be claimed as a loss on your financial year end.
Review Insurance Policies and Vendor Contracts
Taking into account the way you have done business in the past and what the future potentially holds, your insurance needs may have changed considerably. Do you have enough coverage? Are your funds being allocated wisely and effectively? Are you paying for services you no longer use?
Forecast Next Year’s Cash Flow
Forecasting will help you to be prepared for what lies ahead beyond your financial year end. Having a handle on your cash flow will get you through the low points that you know will come and keep you stronger the rest of the time. Having a strategy always gives you the edge.
Give Your Technology a Security Upgrade
In 2016, cyber-security is more than just a buzzword. Malicious attacks are happening more and more to small businesses, but knowing what you’re up against will help protect you. If you need to call in an IT consultant, do it. Do whatever you can to make sure that your vital data is protected from viral or malicious attacks. The peace of mind you receive will be priceless. Do it now as you are cleaning house.
Clean the Financial Slate
Take care of any debts or outstanding invoices in order to begin the year with a clean slate. Collect from your vendors to the extent that you can – though it may be advantageous to defer some payments until next year. Ask your accountant for advice that is specific to your situation.
Simplify and Streamline your Business Processes
Consider moving your business IT infrastructure into the cloud. There are many advantages to doing business this way: it is financially smart, as there is no need to maintain servers. It is more efficient, providing instant access to files from any device or computer. Finally, it gives you the option to scale and expand your computing power, which will be a huge advantage if you are projecting some serious growth in the new year.
Get Some Professional Help
Your company’s financial health depends on sound advice and real numbers. Even if you don’t have the resources to hire a regular bookkeeper or accountant, enlist the help of a good one to help you sort out your financial year-end and your year-ahead cash flow. Above all, don’t lose sleep over any of these things – keep in mind, there are people who specialize in this, and who can break everything down into easy-to-understand terms that will undoubtedly make you feel better about all of it.
Liberty Office Suites Supports Your Financial Year End
Liberty Office Suites is a full-service office suite provider catering to small businesses, entrepreneurs, freelancers and startups. Our culture is diverse and inclusive, and many of our clients go on to establish mutually advantageous professional relationships with their fellow office mates. What we offer is a place for your business to thrive; the rest is up to you. It’s the opportunity to have a fully staffed, fully equipped office space at your fingertips without a major outlay of cash, and a potential motherlode of networking opportunities – or so say those in our office ‘family’. If you’re looking for insight on how our clients successfully manage their financial year end, drop us a line today. We’d love to chat with you about how Liberty Office Suites can give you the home-turf advantage.