Basic Bookkeeping for Your Small Business

Basic Bookkeeping for Your Small Business

As a small business owner, it can be tempting to dispense with time-consuming bookkeeping, and work on an ad-hoc basis to save time. However, this will almost inevitably turn into a complicated, confusing nightmare in the future as receipts are lost, invoices go unpaid, and the taxman wonders where all the money went. This article breaks down the basics of a good bookkeeping system, and should be a useful starting point for business owners looking to get their accounts in order. What do I need for a simple bookkeeping system? Essentially, a good bookkeeping system will record all the money coming into and out of your business. This is useful for a business owner as they have to keep on top of costs and provide the HMRC with proper records. In particular, a good bookkeeping system will incl... »

10 Ways to Improve Your Cashflow and Stay on Top of Your Finances

10 Ways to Improve Your Cashflow and Stay on Top of Your Finances

We’ve all heard that old adage ‘cash is king’ but it is still relevant today or perhaps, in this competitive, fast-moving world, it is even more important. Without a steady flow of cash, your business will run into serious trouble. You won’t be able to pay bills or your staff, make purchases or plan for the future. Here are 10 ways to improve your cashflow and boost your financial efficiency: Forecast your business’ cashflow It may sound obvious, but it is surprising how many businesses don’t maintain an accurate cashflow forecast. Look at how much cash is coming into your business each month (cash inflow) and how much is going out (cash outflow). With a regularly updated forecast in place, you should be able to identify seasonal peaks and troughs and plan business activities to ensure the... »

Creating New Business is Top Concern for Small Firms

Companies that describe themselves as “highly ambitious” significantly more concerned about business issues Creating new business, legislation changes and keeping existing sales volumes were named as the top worries for small businesses in 2015, according to research by finance group Santander. The top concern among small and medium enterprises is gaining new customers, with 44% of firms saying that they are worried about their ability to generate additional business in 2015, this was followed by apprehensions over red tape (37%) and maintaining sales volume (36%). Other key concerns that emerged from the research, which included the opinions of 800 small and medium enterprises, include cashflow (35%), managing employees (35%) and customer credit risk (28%). The research also revealed that... »

Over Half of Small Businesses Face Cashflow Problems

Late payment cited as major concern for small, established businesses despite 84% recording profits Over half (54%) of small businesses are experiencing cashflow problems, according to a new report, with late payments cited as a major reason for financial concerns by 29% of business owners. The findings, which came from a recent One Poll survey of 500 businesses, found that cashflow was one of the main challenges to established small companies. Businesses that launched between 2000 and 2007 were the most concerned about cashflow (67%), while those who set up in the 1980s were the least worried (35%). The issue of late payment affecting small business’ cashflow was brought up earlier this year when reports revealed that small and mid-sized businesses are the worse effected by late payment –... »

7 Ways to Improve Your Business Finances

7 Ways to Improve Your Business Finances

Small and mid-sized business bosses have to consider everything from how to cut carbon emissions to making the most of social media marketing; but keeping a close eye on financial matters should remain a very high priority and a cornerstone of how you build for the future. Here are some tips on how to improve your financial processes as a small business owner: Speed up your invoicing process Few small businesses can afford to see their invoices going unpaid for lengthy periods of time. The best and most reliable way of ensuring that you receive payments from clients in a shorter timeframe is by speeding up the process at your end of the equation. By systematically and routinely sending out invoices at the earliest opportunity, you will very likely see significant benefits in terms of how s... »

Jubilee Celebrations Cause Cashflow Problems for SMEs

The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee could cause serious cashflow problems for UK businesses, according to RBS Invoice Finance, one of the UK’s largest providers of invoice finance solutions. With so many company directors, finance staff, and other signatories expected to take time off during the June celebrations, many important payments could be delayed. In addition, a large number of London-based employees are being encouraged by their employers to work from home during this period, which could cause further disruption. RBS Invoice Finance has created a list of Golden Rules for any companies that are concerned about potential cashflow problems during this period. For a start, the company recommends re-visiting any current cashflow projections with a ‘worst case scenario’ in mind, so that SMEs ca... »

Payroll systems

Cashflow: Monitoring Your Cashflow

Every business needs cash to survive – to pay suppliers, employees and bills. For most businesses, the need for cash increases as the business grows. So it’s crucial to monitor the flow of cash from your customers to you, and from you to your suppliers and employees. To fulfil your business plans, you must take account of the flow of cash in and out of your business, ensuring cash is available when needed to operate; or to ensure you can make timely arrangements for credit. In all areas of the business, especially with cashflow, it’s vital to act on the most up-to-date information. It’s not only key to running a successful business, it’s key to staying in business. Cashflow analysis should not be confused with your profit & loss (P&L) accounts. To find... »

How to Get Paid On Time and Improve Your Cashflow

Good credit control doesn’t just happen. Here’s how to make sure you have an effective system in place to get paid on time if you don’t get paid upfront… This guide will show you: How to set up a new customer How to process orders from new and existing customers Good practice for invoicing customers How to deal with late payments How to set up a new customer Gather comprehensive information about the customer before taking orders. Confirm details such as: Trading name and status (e.g. sole trader, limited company, partnership, limited liability partnership or plc). The invoicing address. Whether they usually pay by cheque or electronically (BACS), and when they normally pay bills (e.g. do they do a cheque run on certain days of the month?). Provide all the informat... »

Cashflow: Confidence in Your Cashflow

By Lloyds TSB Commercial Unpredictable cash flow can be one of the most common barriers to growth. As raw material and product costs fluctuate and you strive to get paid on time by suppliers, confidence that you have access to funds is crucial to maintaining stability and achieving future success in your business. As well as approving eight out of 10 requests for loans and overdrafts*, Lloyds TSB Commercial also has a number of options designed to ease cash flow pressures and keep your finances fluid. Manufacturing, which in 2009 was the third largest sector of the UK economy and employed 2.6 million people, is an industry where businesses simply cannot afford to see cash flow run dry. One option used by businesses facing this issue is factoring, or invoice discounting, which allows you to... »

Budgets: Creating and Using Your Budget Effectively

This guide helps you understand the importance of budgeting and how to create and use a budget effectively, so you can keep your business financially on track. This guide covers: Budgeting: why bother and what’s involved? Creating your first budget Sales budgets – building and using yours Profit and loss budgets – building and using yours Budgeting: why bother and what’s involved? If you’re thinking of starting a business, a budget shows you and your potential backers whether your idea is viable. Once your business is up and running, a budget provides a blueprint for your business’ success, and an accurate measure of how it is performing against your blueprint, month by month. Budgeting helps you forecast: How much money you will spend. How many products... »

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