As a small or medium sized business, you will be all too aware of how difficult it is to keep yourself in the black, and out of the red. There are many reasons why you may be struggling as a business to survive financially:
- You may have taken out a loan which you are now finding hard to repay
- You may be trying to invest in marketing to keep up with competitors but don’t have the cash available
- You may have been hit with a sudden bill or expense
- Your rent or utility bills may have gone up
- You may have suffered a disaster such as a cyber attack/burglary/fire which is costing a lot to put right
It is vital that businesses do everything they can to save money wherever they can. Even if you think that your business is financially stable, it pays to be savvy and prepare your bank accounts just in case the worst should happen.
#1 to look into: Cyber Attacks
One issue for businesses is cyber attacks, which can cause a loss of data and potentially months of time left out of work whilst the company tries to rebuild itself. Research which was commissioned by the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS), showed that the number of cyber attacks hitting businesses has increased and found that 87% of small businesses experienced a security breach last year and 93% of large organisations had been targeted.
It is therefore vital to secure your systems with proper software. Some companies, such as thru, can provide this peace of mind, offering ad hoc file transfers over secure networks as well as confidential file storage to suit. Thru have built their whole service package around security, understanding the challenges and concerns a modern business has over cyber attacks and losing money over lost data. They have actually gone 12 years without a breach, providing full antivirus scanning of every file, proactive monitoring and heightened cloud storage security.
This company’s services, like some others providing similar offerings, might be a wise investment for the discerning business owner.
#2 to look into: Outsourcing an accountant
According to an article released just today, UK Businesses are seeing a 30% increase in debt through late payment of bills in 2014.
Some businesses decide to outsource an accountant to help them keep on top of late payments. This can be beneficial as the accountant brings a lot of experience from the industry and is able to deal with difficult cases, whilst at the same time being located in their own offices and costing your business far less. They can also source you the best deals and help to negotiate rent arrangements.
#3 to look into: Be careful what loans you take out
It was be tempting to take out a loan, especially if a bank has contacted you directly claiming that they can offer you the best rate. It can feel like the easy way out, but be careful. Think about your options and how you will repay the loan. Also, consider the interest on the loan itself and how long you will be repaying it for. Is the work you have planned to get completed with the help of the loan (i.e. investing in marketing) going to justify the cost of the loan itself?
Here are just some options to consider when looking at your finances. Remember, your business should conduct a financial MOT each year to review costs regularly and ensure your company stays on track to success.