Tips for getting paid before the holidays

Tips for getting paid before the holidays

Cash flow GoFi8urePositive cash flow, the lifeblood of SME businesses is critical to sustaining and growing a business. Many business owners rely on revenue to indicate the health of their business. However, as the saying goes “revenue is vanity, cash flow is sanity, but cash is king”.

Christmas is nearly upon us and it is the season to be jolly! But will you be feeling as full of festive cheer at the end of December when you find your outstanding invoices have not been paid?

With many businesses shutting down well before the start of Christmas, there is a narrow window of opportunity for your customers/clients to pay you. We understand every business needs money to survive that is why we created a checklist with tips and trick on how to get paid before Christmas.

Remember businesses shut down early

As you probably know, most offices will be closed from Friday 22nd December. That means that by that date, you need to send an invoice to the right person, with the correct information and on time. Otherwise, you will wait for the payment after the New Year.

Keep in mind that invoices that are sent two weeks before Christmas are likely going to be paid after the holidays, so plan your payment schedule on time.

To make sure you get on that December payment run:

  • Send your invoices over as early as possible.
  • Include a full statement of all outstanding invoices.
  • Make sure your payment terms and due dates are crystal clear.
  • Make it clear that you expect payment before Santa arrives.

Invoice Immediately

As soon as you have finished your project or job, you should send your invoice, especially during the holiday season. Every day that your invoice is not getting paid costs you money. Send your invoice immediately and give your clients a chance to pay you in a timely manner.

Chase Your Overdue Invoices

Find some time before Christmas to look over your invoices and make a list of what clients have not paid you, then sort the invoices by the due date and by the biggest amount. You should chase the ones that have the biggest total amounts that are overdue.

Move to online invoicing

In such a digital world there are no excuses for not using online invoicing to speed up your payments. Even the most basic cloud accounting packages will give you the option to send your invoices to clients online via email.

Using online invoicing will speed up payment because:

  • It removes the need for printing hard-copy invoices (as well as the time and cost of sending them in the post).
  • It gets your invoice sent by email directly to the customer’s finance team (and removes the worry of your paper invoice getting lost or delayed in the Christmas post).

Set up Xero Invoice Reminders

If you are using Xero and have not started using the Xero Invoice Reminders now is the perfect time to start. Invoice reminders allow you to automatically send your customers an email reminder about their invoice. You will be able to remind them before or after it is due, your choice. And the message is fully customisable. Once you get it set up, you do not have to worry about it anymore, it does the chasing for you. We also recommend as part of your debt collecting process to send monthly statements and use the notes section under the client so you can review the history with the client.

Click here to learn more about Xero Invoice Reminders.

 

 

NZ Business Magazine – GoFi8ure Accounting Software Specialists

Have you read the latest NZBusiness Magazine? If you are looking at upgrading your accounting software then this article is a must read. Check out page 22 in the magazine or CLICK HERE to read it online.

Contact GoFi8ure, your accounting software specialists to get your accounting software set up and sorted without any stress.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

4 Reasons Why You Can Benefit From Using Accounting Software

Whether you are starting up or already running a small business, you may avoid using software. This could be due to the cost, because you think it’s confusing, or you use an Accountant for tax and think software is unnecessary. But, what you may not know is accounting software can help you streamline your business and increase your bottom line. It helps ease the burden of financial administration, allowing you to focus on your business passion instead!

Here are the top 4 reasons why your business can benefit from accounting software.

1. Keep your Finger on the Pulse of your Business
How often do you review your financial information? By only looking at your financial information once a month or at GST time, you could miss seeing valuable information in a timely manner which may affect your business decisions.

2. Bring your Business to the Next Level
Are you still generating quotes using Microsoft Word templates? With accounting software you can create and send professional looking quotes to potential customers and when accepted convert the quote to an invoice then match the payment to the related invoice when payment arrives. This eliminates replicating data entry and reduces admin time.

3. Have Accurate Records for Tax Preparation
At tax time do you find yourself looking for your shoe-box full of receipts, trying to remember which expenses were business related? By keeping your records within an accounting system the end of year process can be less of a burden. You capture the correct information throughout the year and eliminate the need for the accountant to have to enter your data records into their tax system.

4. Control your Cash flow
Do you know how much money you can expect and what bills you will have to pay over the next 30 to 90 days? Every business needs to know what is coming in versus what is going out. Accounting software can provide you with cashflow reports, budgets and up to date profit and loss reports to ensure you can manage one of your businesses most valuable assets – cash!

Would you like to find out how GoFi8ure can help move your accounts onto life changing accounting software? Email us on enquiries@gofi8ure.co.nz or call us on 0800 463 488 for your complimentary assessment today.

What is the difference between Administrators and Certified Bookkeepers?

During their early days, many small businesses have no choice but to combine many core functions together, including bookkeeping and administration tasks. As a business continues to grow, at some point, as a business owner you may need to separate the administrative and accounting functions. This will ensure that your business can run smoothly and more efficiently. Knowing the difference between bookkeeping and administration tasks will help you effectively create two roles that complement each other. So how do you identify when you need to hire either a Bookkeeper or an Administrator?

When should you hire an Administrator?

  • You are doing administration tasks when your time could be more productive elsewhere.
  • Your office needs someone to manage and maintain the constant flow of paperwork.
  • When you need someone to manage your diary and appointments.

What makes an amazing administrator is not necessarily how many pieces of office equipment they can operate. The value they bring to a business lies in how they support the business owner and reduce your administration workload. They take care of the background jobs that need to be done so you can focus your time on the valuable relationships with your clients and move your business forward, vital actions required to generate future growth.

When should you get a Bookkeeper?

  • You are spending more time on financial record keeping that working on your business.
  • You are not confident that your record keeping is as accurate as it should be.
  • GST return filing is often actioned late or at the very last minute.
  • There is no budget in place or minimal understanding of current and future cash flow.
  • Payroll has become stressful and more time consuming.
  • You cannot clearly answer the following:
  • What bills do I owe and who owes me?
  • Did I make enough money this month?
  • Am I meeting my filing deadlines?
  • How do I accurately process payroll?

You may have discovered that by owning your own business you spend more time than you thought you would trying to keep track of the financial paper trail, instead of doing what you enjoy. Wouldn’t you rather get back to doing what you enjoy, use your strengths and skill set to build your business, rather than having to worry about administration and bookkeeping?

As a business owner you may not have the time, energy or skills required, so if you are spending time looking at your books and wondering if they are accurate or correct, it may be time to bring in the expert. With a certified Bookkeeper on your side, your business can be more profitable, more efficient, and more competitive. You will get accurate reports that reflect your business activities, enabling you to make informed decisions that will keep your business moving forward. All those deadlines – they are met without you giving them a second thought.

Now that you know the difference make sure you don’t hire an Administrator to do a Bookkeepers job! Talk to GoFi8ure about our bookkeeping and accounting services, tailored to meet your business needs.

You did not get into business to be a Bookkeeper but we did, so talk to us about outsourcing your bookkeeping by emailing us on enquiries@gofi8ure.co.nz ​

Outsourcing – boost productivity and progress without the long term expense

Many business owners have fantastic talents which is part of the reason why they went into business. With these talents, sometimes comes over-confidence where they try to do everything themselves, and either experience processes being missed, a stall in the business or even worse, burn out.

Quite often, it is at this point that business owners think they will need to employ staff to help. This does not always have to be the case; outsourcing can be the best thing for your business, you just need to find the right company to work with.

It is true that outsourcing can save money, but that is not the only (or even the most important) reason to do it. Outsourcing also allows businesses to enhance services, quality of work, and productivity, while allowing them to focus on growth. It involves hiring an external company which has the expertise you may not have but that you need to be able to move forward and be more productive. It is a powerful option, as you can outsource only what you need, and for as long as you need – which means not having the expense of hiring permanent staff, or incurring costs to up-skill.

GoFi8ure are a great solution to those who needs help with their accounts. We are a one stop shop for all your accounting needs from monthly routine bookkeeping to preparing and filing your Tax Returns. To find out how GoFi8ure can help your business, email us on enquiries@gofi8ure.co.nz or contact us on 0800 463 488.

New Year, New skill-set

Enhance your business skills and knowledge with continuing education offerings through GoFi8ure.

Training and up-skilling is essential to the achievements of a business to ensure ongoing development and improvement. Not only for your staff, but for you, the business owner. Even if you have been in business for many years, investing in yourself and your business should be a vital part of your strategic plan.

“You don’t know, what you don’t know, until you don’t know that you don’t know it”. Despite having years of business experience behind you, many business environments are not stagnant. Developing technologies are constantly causing disruption and opportunity. Changes constantly occur with new legislation and business obligations, software changes, or better business processes becoming available. As a business owner you need to make sure you are up to date with everything you need to know. That is when training and up-skilling comes into play.

The benefits can be life-changing too, reaching far beyond simply relieving boredom or passing the time. Studies have shown adult learning can boost confidence, well-being and feelings of fulfilment and happiness, providing business owners (and their staff) with a new zest for life – that is before we even get to the potential social, physical and professional benefits. So jump right in, the water’s lovely, and make 2017 the year you up-skill and learn more.

What are some of the other benefits to learning and up-skilling?

1. Enhance operational efficiency
Training yourself and your employees can increase efficiency and productivity in completing daily work tasks. Training can also help your organisation achieve greater consistency in process adherence, making it easier to project outcomes and meet organisational goals and targets.

2. Increase business value
Effective training can be used to “up-skill” or “multi-skill” not only yourself, but also your employees. Up-skilling involves extending one’s knowledge of an existing skill, providing more experts within a subject area. This helps you make better decisions for your business. Being better informed is part of your essential business development requirement.

3. Increase business quality
Aside from increased efficiency, both you and your employees will also improve the quality of the work produced with relevant training. It is proven that untrained employees turn out work of lesser value, which in turn lowers the value of your business. Training is essential to higher production value.

Interested in knowing more about how you and your team can up-skill in the accounting / finance side of your business? Then you need to get in touch with Education and Xero award winner GoFi8ure. We have different training packages available to suit both you as a business owner and your employees. We look forward to helping your business grow – enquiries@gofi8ure.co.nz or visit www.sayitlikeitis.co.nz

How to win awards for your business – Featured article by GoFi8ure

What’s the most important thing in your business?

Some people would say it is you – the boss. Some people would say staff are your most important asset. Others might say it’s the quality of the product or service you provide.
They’re all wrong. It’s money. Money makes the world go round and it certainly keeps your business afloat. Without it you’d be buggered as a business.

So who do you trust to look after your money? Who do you trust to look after your business’s finances, its books, its accounts? You?

If it’s your most important asset wouldn’t you want the best people looking after your money? People who can help you make your money make even more money for you, and make your business even more successful?

That’s one of the reasons bookkeeping company, GoFi8ure, has won so many awards. Because it’s been judged by experts to be very, very good at what it does – and what it does is help small business people to manage their money by keeping ‘the books’ in good order.

It offers financial solutions, not just financial band aids.

The multi award-winning company is also a Xero partner and was recently named the Xero Bookkeeping Partner of the Year New Zealand 2016.

At the same time the company was a finalist in the Wellington region Business Excellence Awards for 2016.

The fact that GoFi8ure consistently wins industry awards means it consistently performs above average, and that means its clients consistently get above average advice and service.
And when that advice and that service is focused on managing your business’s financial affairs you can have faith that your most important asset is in good hands.

And that’s critically important if you want your small business to grow into a bigger business.

Lots of Kiwi small business people take a DIY approach to their accounts, or entrust the job to someone who’s not necessarily well qualified.

But that can be dangerous because of the many tax and legal complexities with which every business must comply and that can trip up the unwary.

Having the right financial and bookkeeping advice is an investment in the development and growth of your business, and it’s an investment in your own peace of mind – and in some cases, your health. Worries about the financial fitness and sustainability of your business can be very stressful, especially if you have mortgaged your house or borrowed money to start your company.

So if you are serious about your business, if you think it’s important to be the best at what you do, make the call to work with the best.

Who knows? Maybe if you do you will win some awards of your own! Email us on enquiries@gofi8ure.co.nz to chat further.

The pros and cons of DIYing your small business accounts

Every small business person has this dilemma. Do the books yourself? Or contract a professional Bookkeeper? Not a part-time employee – a professional contractor. Lisa Martin from multi award-winning bookkeeping practice, GoFi8ure, examines the pros and cons of the DIY approach versus the professional contractor approach.

 

 

 

Pro: It’s cheaper. You don’t have to pay anyone. You do it yourself – often at night or on the weekends, but hey … at least it’s cheaper.

Pro: You can lodge and file the numbers and the paperwork any which way you want ‘em. Where they make sense to you and where (hopefully) you can find ‘em again (and – hopefully – understand ‘em).

Pro: You’re the boss. You need to know what’s going on. You need to be in control of every facet of the business (despite the fact you’re not quite sure what those complex new tax rules mean and how they affect you, but you’ll wing it. How bad can it be?!).

Con: If you’re like most small business people, doing the books is probably not your best skillset. Otherwise you’d be an accountant, right? So it’s likely you will probably a) put off doing the books, b) make a mistake in the books c) fail to file all the necessary paperwork with the proper authorities and d) mess up the management of your business finances.

Con: You risk a call from the IRD. Because you are not an expert and because managing your business’s financial affairs requires an expert, you could well end up falling foul of Inland Revenue because you got things wrong, or didn’t do what you were supposed to do, when you were supposed to do it. All of which gets the Inland Revenue interested in you and that can cost you plenty, both in terms of hard cash and your stress levels. Have you heard those radio ads where a tax debt broker offers their services to help companies just like yours extricate themselves from under a mountain of debt they owe to the IRD? Those companies probably got into that unenviable position because they didn’t contract in a professional Bookkeeper. Don’t make the same mistake.

Con: It takes time you’d probably rather spend fishing or golfing or doing anything other than entering and filing receipts and calculating GST. How much is your time worth? What’s your mental health worth?

Con: You are not growing your business. Because you’re head down over the books, you are not out there doing the business, marketing the business and making money. You’re in here with your calculator and a complicated excel spreadsheet that’s probably driving you mad! Your call.

Con: You are not managing your money and using it as wisely as you could do. Again, you’re not an expert at that – otherwise you’d be a banker, right? But professional, contract Bookkeepers are experts at it and they can both save you money and make you money by advising you how to manage your company’s money.

Con: You’re probably causing yourself stress and sleepless nights. Yes, you’re saving money by DIYing it (but you’re not making money because you’re doing the books when you should be doing the business), but you’re probably giving yourself a headache you don’t need. And if you’re under business stress how does that affect your family?

So, bottom line, as we Bookkeepers like to say, is – yes, you could DIY your company’s financial management, but why would you if you are serious about growing your business and making money?

Smart business people know when and where to invest to grow their business. The question is: Are you a smart business person, or do you believe you can DIY every job (and end up doing none of them well?). Your call. GoFi8ure provides peace of mind with premium bookkeeping and accountancy solutions. It’s efficient, economical and mobile service is perfect for small and medium sized businesses in the Wellington, Hutt Valley, Auckland and Christchurch regions. GoFi8ure can help with everything from a bank or GST reconciliation to management accounting, payroll and reporting for a business as big as 30 staff.

The value training can add to your business

At GoFi8ure we truly believe that training is not a cost, but an investment in your business and future growth.

You may have heard this popular question that highlights the importance of investing in employee training, it goes something like this:
Person 1 asks “What if we spend money on training our employees and they leave?”
Person 2 replies “What if we don’t and they stay?!”

In this article we highlight why employee training is a crucial part of a successful business.

1. Training gives employees the necessary skills and knowledge to carry out their work to the best of their ability, resulting in an increase in productivity and quality of work.

2. Training can give your employees an increased and more diverse skill set, where they can take on additional responsibilities while supporting their own career progression.

3. Training can give your business a genuine competitive advantage over your competition. The simplest way you can be better than your competitors is by having employees that work better than the rest. Training is a direct route to achieving this.

4. Training helps reduce employee turnover. Investing in your employees makes them feel valued and lets them know you are interested in developing their skills. As a result they tend to stay longer and contribute more to your business. Replacing staff is expensive and time consuming. It is much better to train and retain your best people in the first place.

5. Whether it is training, methods of working or legislation – things continuously change in the work place. Regular training means your business and your employees don’t get left behind and they stay working at their best, both today and in the future.

6. Training decreases the need for supervision. Untrained and under-qualified staff can drain your management resources and distract your best people from urgent and important tasks. Avoid becoming over reliant on one person by training at least one other staff member of your team to the desired standard.

To talk more about Xero and bookkeeping training for your employees, visit our website: www.sayitlikeitis.co.nz or email us on enquiries@gofi8ure.co.nz

Invest in your business today!

 

What is your time worth?

As the age old saying goes, “time is money” – so what is yours worth?

Time is something that we like to think we have well managed. But the truth is, it is quite often the last thing we really think about. You have most likely heard, or even said, sayings such as “there aren’t enough hours in the day” or “I haven’t had time to do all the things I wanted” on more than one occasion.

Why do many business owners find themselves saying these things time and time again? Because they wear too many hats, for far too long. The role of the business owner should be to focus on tasks that help grow the business and be profitable – instead of tasks that can be outsourced or completed by a skilled employee.

Many business owners find it hard to delegate, or hire a skilled employee, in the beginning. But if you put this off for too long and continue to do it all yourself, you’ll burn out and the business will suffer rather than grow. So where do you start and what can you actually do about it?

First and most important step is to ask yourself the following questions and answer them honestly:
1) How much am I worth to my company?
2) How is the value of my time best determined?
3) How is the value of my time best invested?

Second important step is to work out where your time and strengths are best used.
“Work to your strengths” is a great saying, and outsourcing jobs which are in your “weaknesses” category is a great investment. For example, if numbers are not your thing, outsource your bookkeeping to a bookkeeping professional. They use their skills daily, so they will instantly be quicker and more efficient.

Third step: Delegate.

Focus on what makes you happy and what helps the business. Learn to delegate the tasks which you find do not utilise your strengths, or you just don’t enjoy. Delegating will allow you to concentrate on what makes you happy which will have a positive impact on the business long term and will help it to grow.
Now that you know what you need to do – come and chat to us about outsourcing your routine accounting and freeing up your precious time. Contact us on enquiries@gofi8ure.co.nz