Don’t blink you might miss it

Can you believe it, the first quarter of the financial year has passed and by gosh time has flown.

So, rather than waste any more time, click on the image above for a short video as to what we are discussing this month before you read on.

Watch the video here

Save me tax

We’ve previously shared the 32 ways to extract more value from your business whilst saving tax and recently introduced our “tax and growth discovery form” with a handful of clients as we gradually roll this out.

This form pulls out what matters the most to you in your business and helps identify where you are, where you want to be and then gives us the platform to see how best we get you there.

If you would like a copy of the form together with guidance as to how to complete this just click the button below.

Yes please, I’ll have a tax and growth discovery form

Make me more money

We keep mentioning the scary fact that only 1 in every 2,222 business owners exit their business when they want, with how much they want.

If you start planning ahead there now, get an understanding as to what your business is roughly worth if you sold it today and build out a road map to improve this, you will help beat the stats.

Yes please I would like a business valuation

Help me focus on what matters

Do you know who your top 10 customers are in terms of profitability?

Do you know what your top 10 supplier costs are?

Far too many business owners do not know the answers to the above two questions and when using cloud-based accounting software it is literally at your finger tips.

By then acting upon this information you can then start making decisions that increase the value of your business.

I don’t know but I would like to know

Improve my cash flow

It is interesting when you take a step back and reflect on how generations before us managed their cash and how times have changed; or have they?

A lot of the same problems remain but some of the old traditional methods have sadly been forgotten and whilst I am not suggesting we all go back to brown envelopes, jars or filling mattresses; the process is one where a lot can be learnt to make your current cash stretch further.

Head across to our website and read the blog whereby we share four tips around this that can be accessed here which clients of ours are already putting in place and it is literally changing their lives simply as a result of this same methodology.

Takeaways

  1. Ideally you need four plans in your business (all of which can drop out of the discovery form):
    • operational plan
    • financial plan
    • tax plan
    • retirement plan
  2. The day for planning your retirement was yesterday but today will have to do as tomorrow is too late
  3. Cash can go a lot further than you every imagined once you change the processes you use to manage it

Our wider impacts that you have contributed towards

Overall, we have now made over 2,119 “impacts” to date across 34 projects to date which for the month of March alone, including:

  • supporting young adult’s mental health
  • providing emergency relief support in Ukraine
  • 97 days of access to clean drinking water was provided
  • 4 days of housing being provided in Vietnam
  • helping fund business training programmes in Zimbabwe
  • 4 days of training in sustainable agriculture were given to villagers in Madagascar
  • 10 days of education were provided for children in the world

32 ways to extract value from your business

32 ways to extract value, tackle rising costs and reduce tax

Many business owners and individuals will now be faced with challenges in the year ahead including:

  • rise in living costs/subsequent rise in wages
  • rising inflation
  • increased taxes
  • repayment of government-backed loans
  • rising cost of debt

In this month’s bulletin we’re going to specifically focus on rising taxes and wages and some things for you to consider.

Tax (a quick fix)

There are 32 ways to extract value from your business; or at least this is what we have reduced it down to.

Want to do a quick tax health check on your business? Click here and we’ll send through a checklist for you to fill in.

Wages (and another way to save tax)

For many we are approaching the time when wage rises will be discussed and with the rising cost of inflation pay rises of 5% upwards may commonly be asked for by your team and that is just to maintain their standard of living rather than being seen as a pay rise.

There are ways to counter-act this in terms of providing your team with benefits they have not had previously whilst reducing tax at the same time.

Still not clicked the link above for that checklist and just want to drive straight in; then click here for our template 32 ways to tackle rising costs; whilst reducing tax.

P.S. More information on our
client awards very soon …

Marginal Gains

Forget January tax mayhem and focus on financial planning

As you all know we had a big push to make our January; and that of our client’s, so very different many others who might be scrambling around looking for paperwork and panicking over what tax is due and whether they can afford it.

One final comment on the note of tax returns; watch out for the change in penalty structure kicking in very soon whereby more information can be found here.

We want you to look forward towards the end of the current tax year so are thinking of 5 April 2022 and putting our efforts and thoughts into focusing how we better get money out of the business for YOU rather than focusing on pleasing the tax man this month.

We’ll soon be sharing some food for thought but if you want early access and want to be ahead of the game with this exercise then get in touch with your account manager today.

Operationally

So COVID is still lingering but there is; albeit limited, still some support out there with local councils expected to see the financial support come through imminently and more information can be found here.

Ignoring COVID for a minute, when was the last time you reviewed your suppliers and considered:

  1. What do you need to cut
  2. What do you need more from i.e. ask for early payment discount or even cash back
  3. What do you need to spend more on to generate more value

One client alone this week has taken step 2 and will save £000’s this year as a result of one single conversation!

Those business new years resolutions already suffering?

Be it individually; or as a business, we all need routine and accountability and I’m sure we can all relate to that from a fitness perspective.

Once you have both – BOOM!

Get in touch with your accountancy manager if you want help overcoming the January blues with some very quick and easy strategies to help you do so.

P.S. They do not involve meditation though I believe that also might be useful.

P.S. More information on our
client awards very soon …

Merry Christmas

Time for reflection

Okay so neither this year nor this Christmas is perhaps going to turn out as we expected but that doesn’t stop us from taking time to reflect.

This month we thought we would merge our usual operational/financial newsletters we spread across the month and give you some things to think about going into a well-earned festive break all together given that a lot of people will be wrapping up soon for the Christmas.

Operationally

So it might feel like groundhog day with all of the recent announcements but operationally we must keep pushing to be stronger and more resilient and we have a fantastic blog on our website around the four pillars any successful business should have in place.

Head over here to take a read.

Financially

If any of you are after some reading over the Christmas, we fully recommend ‘Profit First’ by Mike Michalowicz whereby he speaks about going back to basics.

Whilst further lockdowns might be on the horizons; and the likelihood of further Government support remains uncertain, it does not stop an individual or business owner going back to basics to reduce wastage when it comes to finance and strengthen their overall cash flow position.

We’ve summarised some of the key points if you want to take a look here.

Want to be a bit more proactive and hit 2022 with a bang?

Why not join those who have already committed and jump onto our workshops where we take the points above and convert them into actions to help you work less in your business and ultimately exit sooner and with more money.

I know what I’d be asking for off Santa but I am an accountant and a little bias.

I’d love to know more about the workshops

P.S. The Client Awards will be back next year also …

Profit

Profit First

I have an apology on behalf of all accountants – we have been getting it wrong for far too long and we are all sorry; profit first is the way forward.

This is WRONG:

Sales – Expenses = Profit

This is RIGHT:

Sales – Profit = Expenses

Business owners often leave themselves last. We take home whatever money is left over after all other expenditure; we are often first into work and last to leave, and as a result we are the one’s that think about our work life balance last.

Not anymore, as we share some core principles to help you turn this all around by putting yourself and profit first!

Four Core Principles

The four core principles to getting right what you previously got wrong in your business are:

  1. Use smaller plates
  2. Serve sequentially
  3. Remove temptation
  4. Enforce a rhythm

Using smaller plates

As human beings we have a habit of being able to justify more of something quite easily.

How is it that we can fill a 4-bedroom house having moved from a two-bedroom small flat? (or it that just me?)

Why do we need a large SUV when the average car journey is just 8.4 miles?

More importantly, when we try to cut down on something, it is often difficult to sustain it.

For example, it is really easy to say “I am going to start eating less” and it can be easy initially but tough to sustain.

From a financial perspective, it might be easy to make savings initially but how long can you keep it going?

The same can even apply to time.

However, we can often be resourceful when we want to be.

So consider this:

“If you want to eat less, use a smaller plate”

How long do we all make that last bit of toothpaste last when we come to the end of tube?

Apply this thinking to business:

  • Reduce your budget in areas of expenditure and measure both how much you can save and what impact this has elsewhere
  • Reduce your working hours and keep track of whether you can actually get more done in less time – if you do then stick with it

Serve sequentially

I don’t know about you, but I love a good Sunday dinner and I can promise you that two things I never leave are the roast potatoes and the Yorkshire pudding.  I can also pretty much guarantee that if I leave anything it would be the vegetables. Until, of course, I became a parent and realized I must set a better example!

For those who have kids, you will have heard them claim to be full and as a result are unable to eat certain things on their plate. More often than not, it is the vegetables. Particularly sprouts!

Consider this:

“Eat the contents of your plate in a different order and see what (and how much) is left when they are full.”

If we consider this from a business perspective and go back to the formula we shared at the start:

Sales – profit = expenses

From sales revenue that we receive in, we first take out a calculated amount of profit and then start to manage expenses. When you take this profit first approach, it is interesting to see how much more effective we are at managing expenses within a finite budget.

Remove temptation

As humans we are drawn to things we know we shouldn’t have. It is human nature.

If something “bad” is visible or easy to reach, we are far more likely to succumb to it.  I always tell my wife to not buy crisps or sweets because then I know I won’t touch them.

The same goes with time. I have been notoriously guilty in the past working beyond 5pm simply because I can. I “allow” tasks to take longer, and I “allow” myself to start more work than is actually necessary.

You can spend more on “running expenses” and work those extra hours but it will mean you have less money to take home to spend on the family. And because of those extra hours worked, you miss another bed-time and meal time with the kids.

Try focusing on the following:

  • Go through all your expenditure and entirely cut out anything that you don’t need!
  • Track how you spend your time in an average week and identify things you either don’t need to do or could spend less time on. Aim to find 5 hours in total.  Follow my “D” rules when assessing time:
    • Ditch the task
    • Delegate it to somebody else
    • Do it if it really needs to be done by a certain time
    • Dither – please don’t – you’ve cost yourself enough time and money already!

Enforce a rhythm

Feel the rhythm, feel the ride, get on up, its bobsled time!

*That will be the only reference I make to the film Cool Runnings.

It is all good and well having a routine/rhythm but what if somebody trips you up in the 100m sprint and you miss the Olympics because you didn’t take aversive action? (**definitely the last reference to Cool Runnings!).

Feel the rhythm

To truly make sustainable changes in your business you must put in place a sustainable rhythm that can withstand several bumps along the way.

Once you get things right, you need to recognize them and repeat them more often.  When you get things wrong, don’t dwell on it but instead reflect and learn from it but don’t repeat them.

Now you’ve got the four core principles to putting profit first:

  1. Use smaller plates
  2. Serve sequentially
  3. Remove temptation
  4. Enforce a rhythm

We would love to hear what changes you implement based on the ideas in this post and the difference it has made in your business and personal lives.

Data Is Your New MD

If you have not already recognised the importance of the digital age or embraced it across your business, you are likely to be throwing time, money, and effort down the drain every day.

Now; more than ever, data is the key driver of digital technology such as modern financial software, and done properly, data is your new MD. It puts you in charge of your business. Here’s why.

The old days

You remember those days of not-so-distant-past, don’t you?

When a Simplex D book was the core part of any set of financial statements and without it, you’d be lost.

Simplex D

And then there were the old spreadsheets. Remember how they’d get passed from computer to computer, each person making their own amendments without anyone controlling a centralised version of it? When it came to making a report, the copies would be stitched together until you got something that ‘looked right’.

It took teams of people, with teams of people helping them, all under the watchful eye of the finance director.

Expensive stuff.

You’ll be glad to hear that’s a long-gone thing of the past. Digital accountancy software makes the job of a full finance team and finance director much more effective by doing many things better than a human team ever could.

By design, the software keeps everything organised and in one place. It is simple to use for anyone, and data can automatically update itself. Teams of people can work on an account at once without worrying about deleting or duplicating data.

You can use the software to pull reports in an instant that would take finance teams weeks, saving you time, money, and effort.

Three reasons why the right software, and the right accountant, is now all you need.

1) Data Input

Sick of logging expenses? With our accountancy software, all you need to do is take a photo of a receipt with your smartphone and within seconds it can be sent and logged for you.

Plus, we can link your bank account with the software. This way, the two systems communicate with one another and update themselves: making reconciliation a cinch (no references to Rylan from the TV advert intended here).

You can access everything you need on the go and raise invoices whenever you need. Suppliers can email the software, cutting out time usually spent emailing back and forth and logging everything manually.

And that’s what’s available right now. The world of accountancy software is moving at a fast pace and new ways to save time, effort, and money are being developed every day.

2) Basic Reporting

The data you need, at your fingertips, from any location.

What can you use this data for?

  • Analyse performance: Compare financial figures over whatever period you consider relevant and manipulate reporting with ease to fit your needs
  • Know your customers: Track, segment and provide real time information and insights to make sure you look after your most valuable customers and chase debt from those that are outstanding
  • Keep on top of suppliers: Manage supplier relationships and establish payment reports to aid cashflow

Finally, you can take control of your business and get a clear, overall view of what’s going on in the best way possible: the numbers.

Any information you need is readily available to you. The answers to your questions answered, instantly, meaning you can confidently and effectively get on with your job.

3) Advanced Reporting

We can build you a bespoke dashboard of key features within your financial software to give you the information you need to make the right decisions.

For example, by setting up your software to tell you when a customer’s credit rating changes, or when an internal target is missed you get automated updates that require little time to maintain. You get the results and information you want and need to hear so you can prioritise the actions that make the biggest difference.

Our world is a smaller place than ever, and we are all competing with one another globally in some shape or form. With digital financial software, it doesn’t have to be. Technology is accessible and affordable for all business needs and can help create a level playing field like never before.

If it’s that easy, where does an accountant come in?

The implementation, training, and overseeing of this technology is one area in which your accountant can support you. They are seasoned users and partner with suppliers to help you identify the most effective way to implement.

With online collaboration, your accountant can also see what you can see at any time which makes real time advice more effective. They get a seamless accountant view so that financial management, reporting and compliance-based services can be run whenever needed (without even seeing each other!).

Best of all they provide the advice and direction that helps ensure you are building the right reporting, identifying the right performance measures, creating the most efficient processes, and keeping you compliant at all times. They have a wealth of knowledge about what does and doesn’t work from across other clients, so you be confident about what works and doesn’t work.

You need to focus your energy in the places that will give you the best return.

Give your business the best chance of success. Get in touch today to get started.

Accountability

Words Are Good. Actions Are Better. Results Are Best.

Accountability has never more important than now, so why are we not seeing more people stepping up and showing real leadership?

Doing so could be the deciding factor in whether your business survives, and even thrives.

The press does its best to question the lack of accountability with leaders across the world. Closer to home, we have seen business leaders who are unwilling or unable to step forward in the current climate.

Those who say they will do something but don’t action it, those that action but don’t think about the outcome, and those that know the results of their actions are poor, but don’t do anything to improve them.

Why?

Distraction

Thanks to modern-day technology, we’re a click away from distraction. Whether that’s your phone, your laptop, or the TV or whatever, this on a day-to-day basis means it’s easy to lose focus and fail to achieve what you set out to do.

We need to stay focused and keep the end goal in sight.

What do you want to achieve? How will you do it? When will you do it by?

Let’s focus on three key areas:

  1. Time
  2. Information
  3. Money

Time

We want everything done yesterday.

The younger generation gets, possibly, unfairly tarred with this brush, but we’re all guilty of it. Can you say you’ve never paid extra for next day delivery with Amazon instead of going down the high street?

From a business perspective, everyone wants success. And they want it now. Right now.

And should we expect anything else? There are so-called business gurus out there who lead us to believe we can make a million pounds in a day. Yes, a day.

The volume of ‘how-to’, cheat guides and inspirational LinkedIn posts mean we expect more, quicker and easier whilst paying less for it.

Information

The amount of information you have at your fingertips can be overwhelming. And most of the time, you don’t have to go seeking it. It interrupts your day, with most of it being unhelpful and irrelevant.

Last week (yes, last week) I received a COVID-19 support email from a technology company I’d never heard of – months after the pandemic had started. Talk about a waste of time.

How many support emails have you received? How much of this information can you read, process, and act on while staying on task with the important jobs you’ve got to do?

You need the right information at the right time. It’s critical to your success. So, make sure you have measures in place to manage it correctly.

Money

How much money have you saved during lockdowns?

Despite the obvious financial strain, the pandemic is putting on your business, you must have found yourself spending less than usual, ignoring food and alcohol costs perhaps.

This shows the amount of money we’re used to wasting. Look at that! There is food in the fridge after all, and you do have something to wear.

Like success, people want more money, easier and quicker. But money alone can’t fix problems caused by information overload and lack of time. You can’t buy either.

The Key to Solving All Three

You!

Many business owners are sitting on their hands waiting for it all the blow over. They think in a few weeks everything will be back to normal.

It won’t.

Other people read and regurgitate information to make it look like they’re doing the right things, without actually implementing anything they’re learning. They think that’s enough.

It isn’t.

Other business owners are keeping their sights firmly ahead. They’re leading by example. They’ve made a plan, communicated it clearly with their staff and fellow business leaders, and are doing what they promise. They trust that be doing this, they’ll see real results that will drive their business forward.

They are correct.

So, ask yourself which of these three people you are? If you don’t like the answer, it’s not too late, but time is running out.

You need to act now. You need the right information at the right time, which is something your accountant should be able to do for you.

The accountant you need in your corner right now is one that gives you the relevant and timely information you need to form a plan, communicate this to your staff, and do what needs to be done to survive and thrive.

Get in touch today to find out how we can work with you to implement the action steps you need to get the results you want.

Lockdown 2 Government Support Summary

This email takes you through the announcements and what it means for your business.

On the one hand it is great to see the government making available this help. But this probably means we will see fairly strict lockdown conditions between now and March 2021. We hope we are wrong about this, but in your contingency/scenario planning, particularly in regard to cash, please extend this 4-week lockdown until the end of March. If you need help with your business planning, please get in touch.

Here are the full details from the Government’s announcement.

The Self-Employed Income Scheme
On 30th November you will be able to claim a grant for up to 80% of your profits, to cover you for Nov – Jan 2021. This is capped at £7,500. They also declared there will be one more grant which will cover the period Feb – Apr 2021. Details are yet unknown of when this will be paid or for how much.

To receive these grants, you need to have received the previous grants and it is currently anticipated that this portal will open towards the end of this month.

The ‘Furlough scheme’
This has now been extended to the end of March. Which in effect means that we are unlikely to see the Job Support Scheme operational… You can Furlough any member of staff, as long as they were on the payroll before Oct 30th 2020. And the government will pay up to 80% of their wages, capped at £2,500 per month.

As a result of extending the Furlough scheme the planned Jan 2021 ‘Job retention bonus’ of £1,000 for any employee you Furloughed who you still employed has been deferred. Until when? Who knows?

Help with cash flow
If you haven’t taken a Bounce Back Loan or didn’t take the maximum amount available to you, you can now top this up. And you will be able to take out a CBIL or Bounce Back Loan now until the end of Jan 2021.

Mortgage payment holidays for those who haven’t taken a payment holiday will be available for 6 months, without this being noted on their credit files.

As with everything these days the above is all subject to change but this looks like what we will be working with for the weeks ahead as a minimum.

Additional grants???

There are meant to be more local authority grants coming but more details are yet to be released and these may be discretionary rather than automatic but watch out for updates from respective local authorities over the coming weeks and hopefully within the next 10 days or so.

We have also got a fantastic link below to what grants you could perhaps access but which are not so widely known which can be accessed here so please feel free to follow this link here to see what you could access.

Some inside information perhaps?

We have heard on the grapevine; though not confirmed, the following:

  1. The Government are allegedly working on a new support package which is currently going through the EFG and may mirror the current CBILs scheme but be more easily accessible but please note whilst we have heard this on good authority this is not guaranteed.
  2. Following on from the above the second BBL opportunity for some; it is widely known that the first bounce back loan was never intended to cover the lengthy period of uncertainty that we now face.  There are also now rumours of a second bounce back loan opportunity exceeding the original 25% of turnover/£50k limited to reflect the increased term that the original loan was never designed to cover.

Watch this space but we thought we would share these with you as they came from a source well connected within the Bank of England.

Another lockdown – we are here to support you

So we had unscheduled announcement from Boris tonight so we thought it right that we should get this newsletter out straight away.

As with the first lockdown, the first thing we urge is calm.

If you do urgently want to talk though and are feeling overwhelmed  lost and just a range of emotions and want a friendly ear to bend, I am opening my diary fully tomorrow even though it is a Sunday during these unprecenteded times.

To book something in the diary just follow the link below:

https://calendly.com/graemetennick/15min

The details that have been announced are still to go through Parliament on Wednesday but even prior to that we as usual will expect more details behind the headlines to filter through over the next few days which naturally will filter through the press but we will follow this newsletter up with another once known.

One of the key financial headlines was the extension of the furlough scheme but again more details are to follow.

Surviving Another Lockdown (Partial Or Full)

A further lockdown

As we enter another state of lockdown in some shape of form; depending on what part and in which country you currently operate out of, we must stick together and that is the theme of our final newsletter for September.

We are going to focus on the positive support out there that we suggest you take advantage of so that we keep fighting, take the positives from the challenges faced and those that lie ahead whilst also recognising the strain it puts on us all so reach out for help where necessary.

We do however also appreciate that everybody is probably in a state of feeling overwhelmed to some extent hence we have focused on a handful of key areas this month to help you overcome this.

Cash flow support

Whilst we are uncertain as to what additional support there may or may not be from the Government we can realistically expect greater difficulty when it comes to collecting debt.

We have subsequently established a creditors services alongside an independent third party offering to support businesses in need that will not only do some digging around amounts you are concerned about receiving but will also chase these for you.

This initial exercise is absolutely free and from the cases we have seen so far; as this is handled externally to ourselves, a client recently received over £3,000 that they have previously written off and it cost them little more than £200 that was only taken upon successful collection of the debt.

If this is a concern for you, have any queries and/or just wish to discuss this further register your interest by e-mailing us at funding@gtaccountants.com

Group Event (Virtual I’m afraid)

Whilst we did initially hope some time soon we could commence face to face meetings and have this event as being a physical one we have had to think again but we won’t let it hold us back entirely.

In addition to the online community platform that we have established with Futrli Peer and for which you can access for no charge through this link here to chat with other business owners and get some tips, we are also doing more.

We as a firm will be the lead for Enterprise Nation where we bring business owners together through Zoom but this will be a great opportunity to just let off some steam and take away some great content and advice.

There is no charge for attending and the first virtual event is on 1 October from midday for an hour so if this of interest then why not book through the link here.

Going forward we are hoping to make this a monthly event and get some guest speakers along with hopefully some special offers from partners.  We will also keep those who attend aware of funding pots as these are shared with us in addition to sharing these with you by way of our newsletters.

External Virtual Client Events

In addition to our event being held on the 1 October we are delighted to share and invite you all to two further events that are detailed below:

Friday 9 October at 2pm
Is your business your pension?
To book click here

Thursday 8 October at 3pm
Why financial planning is important
To book click here

These are events are kindly being ran by our partners at St James’s Place so please feel free to book on directly or if you have any queries regarding either of these events then please just let us know again using the funding@gtaccountants.com e-mail address.

Ian Prior - Director of Caretech Systems Ltd

"We have used Tennick Accountants now for a few years and what a breath of fresh air. Regularly discussing more than tax and accounts and recently they convinced me to join one of their 12 week workshops that in one session alone has saved me thousands of pounds already."

Ian Prior – Director of Caretech Systems Ltd
 

Speak to the team about your goals and vision. We'll tell you how we can help you make them a reality.

Are you looking to work with a strategic accounting partner to help shape your business’s future? We’d love to hear from you