Get your business ready for the next financial year

Review and update your business plan! What do you want to do and how do you intend to do it? The 2023/2024 financial year is going to be challenging. You need to think about inflation, rising interest rates, rising energy costs, the possibility of a recession and more. You need to guard against difficulties but also seize opportunities. There will be things that will happen over the next financial year that apply to your particular business and circumstances. What are they?

  1. Budgeting and financial management: Develop a comprehensive budget for the next financial year. Monitor your cash flow regularly, control expenses, and identify areas where you can reduce costs or increase efficiency. We do harp on this a lot but consider investing in accounting software or cloud-based solutions to streamline financial processes. It’s vital that you know what is going on in real time so you can make sure you are really making money but also not losing any.
  2. Tax planning and compliance: Stay informed about changes in tax laws and regulations. Work with a qualified tax professional to optimise your tax planning strategies, ensure compliance, and take advantage of available tax incentives or deductions. Don’t try and do this yourself.
  3. Review pricing and profitability: Assess your pricing strategy and analyse the profitability of your products or services. Consider factors such as production costs, market demand, and competitors’ pricing. Identify opportunities to adjust prices or explore new revenue streams. Really think about this one. Something as simple as changing a supplier might make a big difference to your bottom line. If that’s the case then identifying the need to do it in July is much better than not realising until December.
  1. Marketing and customer retention: Develop a robust marketing plan to attract new customers and retain existing ones. Leverage digital marketing channels, social media platforms, and content marketing to reach your target audience effectively. Focus on building customer relationships, providing exceptional service, and encouraging repeat business. This year – this is going to be important. If a recession happens or consumer confidence and spending falls then you will really want to maximise the customers you have now – and get more.
  2. Technology investments: Do not sit around waiting for things to happen. Evaluate your current technology infrastructure and identify areas for improvement. Invest in technology solutions that can enhance productivity, streamline operations and improve customer experiences. Consider adopting cloud-based tools, automation software, or customer relationship management (CRM) systems. Do not think that just because you are a butcher, baker or candle stick maker that new technology will not affect you. Or that it can’t make you more money.
  3. Employee development and retention: Prioritise employee training and development programs to enhance skills and job satisfaction. Offer competitive compensation and benefits packages to attract and retain top talent. Foster a positive work culture that promotes collaboration, innovation, and work-life balance. One of the biggest challenges facing businesses (last year and for the foreseeable future) is finding good staff – and hanging on to them.
  4. Risk management and contingency planning: Identify potential risks and develop strategies to mitigate them. This may include business interruption, cybersecurity threats, or supply chain disruptions. Create a contingency plan to ensure business continuity in case of unforeseen events. We can all think of examples of very large businesses and very small ones, that have been very badly affected by hackers, supply chain problems and energy costs. What you don’t hear about are those businesses that put precautions in place to forestall these kinds of disasters. Or businesses that were affected but had plans already in place to successfully mitigate them.
  5. Sustainability and corporate social responsibility: Embrace sustainable business practices and demonstrate corporate social responsibility. Consider initiatives such as reducing carbon footprint, waste management, or supporting local communities. These efforts can enhance brand reputation and attract environmentally conscious customers. Does this sound a bit preachy? Remember that we all have to be able to sleep at night. Besides, in the age of social media – “bad” companies get named and shamed.
  1. Seek professional advice: No one is an expert on everything. “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure” Engage with business advisers, accountants, and legal professionals to stay updated on relevant regulations, compliance requirements, and industry trends. Their expertise can provide valuable insights and guidance specific to your business needs.

Be positive. As accountants we help companies overcome bad headwinds and to succeed and grow. You will succeed too. Work hard, think it through, get help and advice and enjoy watching your business grow and prosper

If you would like some advice on all of this, please call us on 1300 268 800