With the first month of the year drawing to a close, businesses everywhere, as we know from our clients, are still looking at ways of cutting costs. Thankfully the numbers of redundancies has slowed down when compared to a last year and the year before as business owners seek new ways of trimming the monthly bill.
This, of course, includes fees for accountancy work carried out on a company’s behalf by its preferred firm. Depending on the size of the company and the amount of people it employees, fees can seem to vary wildly when one business owner talks to another. At the same time, though, the amount of work that goes into managing a particular company’s books can be drastically different than another.
However, there is one common component that all businesses should share – they should seek advice from an experienced accountant on how to set up their accounts. This applies to start-ups and established companies who are finding it hard to keep track of sales and purchasing invoices using their current system. After all, the more work you ask your accountant to do, the more it’s going to cost you. By being organised, by operating a proper filing system and by being aware of how that system interacts with the accounting system that you have in place, you’re much more likely to save in the long run.
In recent years it’s become more noticeable to us that many companies do not have a dedicated in-house accounts person whose responsibility is ensure that all paperwork relating to the company’s sales and purchases is administered correctly. Add to that the work involved in preparing wage slips, ensuring VAT and other taxes are kept up to date, and it’s easy to see why some business owners can’t find the time to manage to piece together a proper paper trail every month.
Some accountancy firms, as part of an ongoing agreement with their client, will assign an expert to manage all relevant paperwork for that business on a weekly basis. It’s a practice that we’ve become accustomed to at DCA for two reasons – firstly, it makes our job of preparing monthly accounts much less onerous and, secondly, it ends up costing the client less as information is much easier to come by and decipher.
For business owners, the first and foremost priority must be driving sales – their prime responsibility is developing and maintaining activity on a daily basis. Building an efficient and cost effective team around that activity comes next. At the core of that team should be a voice in accounts who can look dispassionately at whether or not a project makes financial sense for the firm in the long run. Also, by managing the company accounts more wisely from the outset, businesses can save money all year long.
DCA Accountants and Business Advisors