UHY Hacker Young | Chartered Accountants

Working as efficiently as possible

In the current economic climate, it is essential to make sure that you and your business are working as efficiently and effectively as possible. There are a number of things you can do on your own to make sure your business achieves its objectives, but if you need help, at UHY Hacker Young we have all the expertise you could need.

Here are a few basic things you should consider

Make sure your business plan is written down and up to date.
Committing your goals to paper is a great way of making sure they happen. A written business plan acts as your satnav to success, and is something well worth investing in and keeping up to date.

Critically review your costs and overheads.
Particularly in tough economic times, there are often great deals to be had. In business we are accustomed to our clients asking for deals, and it is easy to forget that we can do the same with our suppliers. Make it a priority to look at costs and overheads and renegotiate deals on a regular basis. Do not forget that if you do not get a deal from an existing supplier, you can always investigate changing supplier.

Prepare and use management accounts to your advantage.
Management accounts are the lifeblood of your business decision-making process. A well-planned and up-to-date set of management accounts will give you all the tools you need to help you make informed business decisions.

Update annual projections and cashflow forecasts.
Not updating annual projections and cashflow forecasts could put liquidity at risk. The only way to stay in control of your business’ liquidity is to make sure your projections and forecasts are continually updated. Don’t forget that ‘Cash is King’.

Compare actual performance against the objectives.
Once plans and projections have been made, it is essential to evaluate ongoing performance. Regular performance evaluation allows for strategy and tactics to be adjusted if required.

Prepare and use aged debtor and creditor lists to spot opportunities.
Aged debtor and creditor lists contain a wealth of information; use them to spot trends, identify opportunities and develop new strategies.

Review your performance with fellow directors.
Reviewing your performance openly and honestly with your fellow directors is an essential part of any business’ success and should be done regularly.

If you work alone, set aside time to get a clear picture of your performance.
Sometimes solo business owners forget to set aside time to review their performance, and this can lead to severe problems if left unchecked for too long. Ideally you should set aside some time on a monthly basis, but failing that; a frank and critical quarterly review will act as a great motivator and call to action.

Know exactly how much you owe and how much you are owed.
Keeping tight control on payments that are due and that need to be made may seem obvious, but many business owners make the mistake of only looking at what has already been paid. Failure to retain control of pending payments can lead to unpleasant cashflow surprises.

Remain objective about your overall business position.
If you are at the stage where you’ve lost objectivity about your business and how it is performing, it is probably time to bring someone on board to help.

The next step

If your business could do with some objective, focused and valuable support, get in touch.