Get Yourself an Accounting Hero Who Does More Than Just Taxes
Not all accountants are the same. There’s the one we’re all familiar with, who files your tax return every year to keep the folks at the Australian Taxation Office happy. Then there’s the other kind— the ones who do much more than just your taxes. They help you figure out how to do more with your business so it can make you more money. If that’s something you’re ready to do, keep reading.
How do you know if you have the right type of accountant?
There are a few telltale signs it’s time for an upgrade. How many times a year do you see your accountant? If it’s just at tax time, that’s a sign you’re leaving money on the table! As we like to say at Prime, strategic accounting means doing more than just looking in the rear-view mirror. Having a snapshot of how your business performed is important, but it’s hard to figure out where you’re going if you’re always looking backwards.
Move beyond the basics. Preparing financial records and submitting tax returns is merely covering the essentials. But there’s so much more you could be doing. Here’s another test. Is your accountant cleaning up issues after they happened? Crisis management is important, but a better method is to discuss your options and learn how to make the best financial decisions before any crisis happens.
Making the most of your money and growing your business can be complicated. So here are 8 simple tips to see if you’ve got the right business advisor in your corner— one who is going to help you scale your business and achieve your financial goals.
1. Tax Planning and Mitigation
As a business owner, you’re counting on your accountant to stay on top of the latest changes to taxes and business regulations. But it’s worth remembering that with great knowledge comes great power. That intel needs to be applied towards handling your taxes in a way that keeps more money in your back pocket.
Your accountant can do so much more in the tax space than just reduce your annual donation to the ATO. Minimising your business tax liabilities means making sense of the options available to keep your pockets lined as much as possible. After all, managing tax effectively can make a huge difference on your bottom line!
Some strategies include:
- Maximising deductions and credits
- Deferring income
- Selecting the most tax-efficient way to invest
- Structuring the business to be more tax-efficient
- Reviewing office plans, equipment and other capital to help maximise tax benefits
Cash is king—and making sure it’s circulating at the right rhythm is critical for your business. Not only do you have to pay your bills on time, but you also need to ensure you’re growing your business profits. As a business owner, you already understand the cycles of cash flow, but have you optimised how you handle your money?
Some cash flow strategies include:
- Reviewing new client credit histories before activation
- Reviewing and adjusting credit terms
- Maintaining a system to resolve overdue accounts
- Tightening invoicing processes for greater speed
- Sending monthly statement reminders
- Obtaining maximum credit terms from suppliers or set-up trade accounts
- Considering payment of debts by credit cards to use interest free periods
3. Business Profitability
Growing your business isn’t always about landing more customers. Sure, there are lots of business coaches that will encourage you to sell, sell, sell! But we believe that revenue and profits are two different things. Not all customers are profitable to serve. Figuring out who’s making you money, and exactly how much money, is the best way to define your ideal customer and grow that group. And while you’re at it, it might make sense to break-up with unprofitable customers since they’re costing you money—unless of course you can figure out how to transform them from cost-centres to profit palaces.
4. Fuel Your Lifestyle
Most business owners choose their own business adventure for a sense of freedom. Creating the flexibility you crave for half-day Fridays and long-weekends away fishing comes down to having the right financial plan. At Prime, our opening line is always: is your business providing you with the lifestyle you desire? If not, we can help. Understanding how you’re performing and what’s driving your profitability will position you for more freedom.
5. Asset Protection
Owning your own business can be laden with risk if you don’t have your assets covered.
Some asset protection strategies include:
- The right asset investment strategy
- Advice on risks and opportunities of asset acquisition or sales activities
- Fraud prevention, internal controls, and transactions safety
- Setting up tax-efficient structures with protection
- Minimising capital gains tax
6. Leave a Legacy
Building your business doesn’t have to be temporary. With the right strategy you can ensure it not only survives after you leave, but is on track to thrive. An estate plan ensures your business is in the right hands, while a succession plan helps you transition to new leadership. Or if you’re feeling charitable, your business advisory can help you reach your community goals and leave an impact for decades to come.
7. Retirement Planning
Goodbyes are always hard. But moving on can be less painful when it’s done right—especially when it’s moving onto the retirement tarmac. Your business advisor can help you figure out your retirement runway—both where you’re headed and how to get there. This includes exploring retirement options and finding the best tax efficiencies available so you can hang on to more of that hard earned money.
8. Gearing Up to Sell
If you’re ready to move on to a different adventure, a business advisor can help you make the best move. Valuation is everything. So do you know how much your business is worth? Your business advisor can help you do the math and make sure you secure the best deal when it comes to selling your business.
As business owners ourselves, we know that success comes in many forms. Whether you’re chasing profitability, freedom, expansion, or more sleep—it’s all possible with Prime. For decades, we’ve partnered with small business owners to help their business flourish. If you’re ready to raise the bar and do more than just your taxes, drop me a line at [email protected]. We can help you do more with your business today!