|Posted on November 3, 2015 at 9:43 AM||comments (4)|
Have you reconciled your Bank Statements lately? Just a Reminder, We have only a few days left to the end of the Year. Very Soon, It will be Tax Season and you will need to submit your Financial Statements for Tax Filing. Can you confidently say that your Company Accounts are updated and reconciled?
It is very important to reconcile your Bank and Credit Card Statements at the end of every MONTH. A Bank Reconciliation is the balancing of a Company's Cash Account Balance to its Bank Account Balance. It is important to ensure that the Cash Account and Bank Account Balances match. The Main Document used for Bank Reconciliation is the Bank Statement.
There are great benefits in reconciling your Accounts and we will be looking at a few of them today. These Benefits include:
I have listed a few of what I discovered in my years of engaging Bank Reconciliations for my Clients. For easy assimilation, I will categorize them as Internal and External Observations:
1) Pilfering Employees/Employees that steal from the Company.
2) Cash Registers not closed out.
3) Bank Deposits not being timely deposited by the Employees.
4) Cash Advances and Loans taken by Employees are not properly accounted for.
5) Unauthorized Purchases made on the Company's Credit Card.
6) Forged Checks being endorsed and cashed at the Bank.
7) Managers taking Clients to a strip club on the company's Credit Card (Yes, This Happens).
8) Rampant Starbucks purchases on the Company Credit Card.
9) Wrong Recording and Classification of Loan Accounts, Line of Credits and credit Card Accounts.
EXTERNAL OBSERVATIONS :
1) Customers reversing charges, without the knowledge of the Business Owner.
2) Automatic Payments increase by the Bank.
3) Utility Companies like Telephone/Internet Companies billing Clients twice in the same month.
4) Fraudulent Purchases on the Company Credit Card.
5) Match.Com Payments made on the company Credit Card.
6) Unauthorized Withdrawals by the Banks ( Inadvertently claiming the Business Owner authorized it).
7) Bill Payments issued via Bill Pay were not mailed out by the Bank to the vendor issued, hence the business Owner incurs late charges for Non Payment of Bills.
8) Over $3,500 in Annual Bank Fees for Overdrafts/NSF/Late Fees.
We can see that most of these items are charge worthy and I have seen a lot of Business Owners experience One or more of these errors because they don't reconcile their Statements. We need to have internal and external procedures in place to get our accounts reconciled. If you have not been recording your transactions from the beginning of the year and have not reconciled them, the best time to start is NOW.
Please do not feel that it is a waste of time to reconcile your accounts, you never know, you may have been losing a lot of cash under your nose. Try to take a look at your account today and begin to experience increased Cash flow. If you feel that you don't have time to get to your Bank Reconciliation, Feel Free to Give Us a Call on 202.422.4586. We are always available to help you.
|Posted on June 23, 2015 at 4:39 AM||comments (5)|
Every Business Owner wants to build and acquire wealth for their Business. Every Business owner wants to grow and expand their Business, as well as ensuring that the Business has an intangible value (Goodwill). Are you Building Wealth for your Business? Do you have steps in place to building wealth for your Business? There are 5 Basic Rules to follow, when you want to build Wealth for your Business. These Rules have been proven to work, no matter your Company Size and they are as follows:
1) REDUCE YOUR EXPENSES : Every Business Owner must have control over their spending. The Key to reducing your Expense is to ask 2 Pertinent Questions:
a) How much do you NEED each month to run and maintain your Business?
b) How much do you ACTUALLY SPEND each month to run and maintain your Business?
As a Business Owner, In order to answer these Questions you will need to have a form of Accounting and Bookkeeping software, such as QuickBooks, to give you an accurate answer. QuickBooks helps to track your income, as well as your expenses, thereby giving you an average total cost for each of your expense for the month. It is advisable for every Business owner to get the QuickBooks software. This is the first step to building wealth for your Business.
2)EXPAND YOUR BUSINESS EARNING CAPABILITY: It is important for every Business Owner to ensure that there is a consistent supply of Cash flow into the Business. It is a fact, that every Business has opportunities to earn more. As a Business Owner, you always have to seek for various ways, that your Business can make money for you. There should be various ways to diversify and expand your Business. For instance, An Optometrist Business Owner can see patients and charge for his Services, as well as selling the Eye Wear Frames in his practice, so that his patients can select and buy their frames from the Practice. By this, the Practice makes money from the Services & Examination, as well as Selling of Eye wear Frames. Basically, Earning More is the Simplest Way to build wealth.
3)PAYING OFF YOUR BUSINESS DEBT: Business Debt can be incredibly useful, but most people are not aware of its dangers. Debt is a thief of Income. When a Business is in debt, every extra income, that the Business generates goes towards paying off the Debt, and this eludes the Business Owner into thinking that the Business is not making money. It is a fact, that Business Loans, Credit Cards and Mortgages are powerful financial tools, necessary for any Business to function, but by any means, Always endeavor to pay them off. It is advisable to have a Plan to pay off your Business debt. Remember, that Every Debt paid leaves room for your Business to save more and this is a strategy to amass wealth.
4) INVEST: The quickest ways build wealth is to Invest, therefore, it means that the quickest way to build Business Wealth is to put your Business Money into Investments that earn less than Inflation. The Long term returns from the U.S. Stock Market is right around 7% (Inflation Adjusted). Although, it is not unheard of, to get 12-15%. The real trick is Time in the market, to allow the returns to compound. Investing your Business Money does not require a fat stack of Bills, to get started. The Key to Investment is Instant Diversification and Instant Exposure to the returns of the market and exceptionally low costs.
5) GET A BOOKKEEPER/ ACCOUNTANT: Let's face it..... Most Business Owners mess up with keeping the Accounting Records for their Business. You can argue with me all you want, but we both know that every single year, when Tax Time rolls around, you run around to look for Bookkeepers/ Accountants. Get to know these facts:
As a matter of fact, Getting a Bookkeeper/ Accountant is the most important way for you to build up your Business Wealth. Make a Decision Today to get a Bookkeeper/ Accountant, who will help you stay on track all year long.
We hope that as a Business Owner, you can implement any and if possible, all of these rules and build wealth for your Business. If you do need help in implementing any of these, We will be happy to help you out. Give US a Call today on 202-422-4586. You will be glad you did.
|Posted on May 18, 2015 at 11:32 AM||comments (7)|
The Warmer Weather has finally arrived; soon it will be summer. Most Business Owners let down their guard, let go on Vacations and have Fun. Coincidentally, it's also a time that Online Scammers and Hackers get active and keep their eyes looking for Accounts to hack and tamper the unfortunate company Account Holders.
Our Discussion today focuses on an area that is passionate to my heart. As a matter of fact, I look forward to a day, that every company will be devoid of fraud. Technology has given fraudsters an edge in recent years, and we see a lot of fraudulent activities and online attacks on most Business Account. There are majority of fraudsters out there that are using the basic scams to de-fraud merchants, because there are too many Businesses that are not doing anything to stop them.
The Purpose of this Write-up is to provide information on the various types of Account Frauds that exist and how to prevent these online fraudulent attacks on your Business. The Online Frauds are as follows:
1) Morphing Fraud (Repeat Offenders): This is common in online customer sales businesses. The Fraudster hits a Single Merchant, multiple times using slightly different data points each time; A Multiple Purchase is made from your Business site within a short time frame with a number of different credit cards. In this Case, All of the Goods will be going to the same location, but all of the other data may change between purchases.
2) Skimming:This is where the Debit/Credit Card Numbers are being accessed in common places like Restaurants, Bars, Hotels, ATMs and Airports. The Fraudsters place fake devices in these locations or sites, where an accomplice or entire staff unknowingly swipes each credit card that is entered. Afterwards, these Numbers are collected and sold.
3) Debit Card Fraud: This occurs when a criminal gains access to your debit card number, to make unauthorized purchases and/or withdraws from your Account. When your Debit Card is used fraudulently, the money is missing from your account instantly. Recently, We had a case of client, whose Company Account was continuously charged an unauthorized amount for 6 months, and the Client innocently thought the charges were for services, he had signed up for, until his account was reviewed and he found out that they were fraudulent online transactions.
4) Identity Fraud: A Case of Identity Theft is being reported every 19 Seconds since the Year 2001; It occurs when someone's personal information is stolen and a credit card account is opened in the victim's name, without their permission , and charges are made to these account. It is worthy to note that identity fraud does not necessarily occur, when a credit card is simply stolen.
Having looked at the most common types of Online Fraud, We have listed below the steps to prevent your account from being attacked.
Avoiding Online Fraud:
Finally, it is worthy to note that the most effective way to prevent fraud is to be proactive in the design of your strategy. It is really scary to consider the damages.
What Strategy have you put in Place to prevent your Personal and Business Account from being attacked? Think about this and Act Immediately. If you need help with setting up a Fraud Resistance Accounting and Bookkeeping Strategy, we are just a Call away. We would love to hear from you.
|Posted on October 7, 2014 at 1:17 AM||comments (7)|
Profitability is a key driver of financial success in business. The goal of every Business owner should be to make profit and improve their business to make it better.
If you were having a discussion, one year from today, and looking over your financials, Will you be happy with your financial progress? This question should propel you to take action, about what you expect your profit to be for the year.
Profit is like a car,that must be driven; it does not drive itself; for you to get a projected profit, you have to be on top of your profit expectations. I have listed some questions, which should stimulate you to focus on an expected profit, as the year is coming to an end:
As you go through these questions, you're painting a picture of what your financial success should look like, and this will lead you to action, for an end result. Having a picture requires taking action to actualize your projected expectations. These steps below will help you achieve your financial profit picture, feel free to put them into practice and see the transformation, it brings to your business:
1) Have a Target Goal: You need to have a financial goal for your business at the beginning of every year. The Goal can be broken into monthly, quarterly and semi-annual financial targets. It is advisable and easier to have a monthly target.
2) Monitor your Progress: Once you set your financial goals, you will need to monitor your progress, against your target every month. You can only monitor your progress by examining your monthly financial reports (Profit & Loss/ Balance Sheet Reports). If you have not been preparing your report, this should be a good time to start.
3) Adjust: At the end of every month, you need to review your target goal against your actual results (financial reports), and decide if you need to make changes, in your business, to achieve your targets. The changes can be in form of reducing an expense category to putting a plan in place for faster accounts receivables process.
This is the secret to creating your financial success for your business. I challenge you to put these into action and watch your business achieve your desired projected profit.
Do you need help with interpreting your financial reports? Perhaps you are yet to prepare your financial reports for the year, and don't have an idea of your actual profit; Call us NOW for further consultation and Assistance.
We will be glad to help you.
|Posted on September 5, 2014 at 12:50 AM||comments (7)|
Setting up the Right Accounting System for your Business.
Every Business needs a good Business Accounting System to increase their Business' chance for success. When Starting a Business, the first focus should be on building systems and processes, that allow us to accurately capture as much data as possible, from the setup process; It is important to remember that this process helps us to learn about our businesses and enhances our decision making, as well as giving us a better idea, of what is going on in our Business.
This Month, we will be looking at the processes of setting up the right business accounting system for our Organization. Below are some points to consider, when setting up your Business Accounting System:
You need to spend time in setting up the right Accounting system for your Business, if you want your Business, to be successful. We know that it is easy to get caught up in all the administrative tasks and will suggest that you ask for help
Do you have the right Accounting System for your Business? It's not too late to set up a good system for you, why don't you give us a Call to help you out.
Remember: You are increasing your Business chance for Success, when you make your Account Setup, a priority.
|Posted on August 5, 2014 at 2:49 AM||comments (26)|
It's already the eighth month of the Year, We are gradually getting to the end of the year, and soon it will be time for Year End Reports. In our last Newsletter, We discussed the concept of Cash Flow and how it affects our Business Operations; this month, we will be looking at tips to manage our Business Cash Flow.
Being in Business for yourself is like being an Air traffic controller, especially in the area of cash flow management ; You can imagine trying to control 100 Airplanes landing simultaneously on two runways; this can be an upheaval task, but we regularly see clients line up their monthly bills, their projected income, business projects and business expenses and try to combine all these activities, at the same time, trying to ensure a steady cash flow into the business; you can imagine, the projected outcome, if all these activities are not properly coordinated.
Cash Flow is the heartbeat of every Business, and if a Business does not have the cash on hand to pay their vendors, they will definitely run into problems. The main Cash Flow Problem, that Business Owners face is as a result of Lack of Creative Cash Management. Below are some Tips to overcome the Ups and Downs of Cash Flow Problems in your Businesses:
1) Always Schedule All Payments: Most Business Owners line up their monthly bills, compile them, sit down and issue all the checks and set up Bill Payments at once; but the trick is to have a " Holding Pattern". It is advisable to schedule each payment, in order to get to your vendors in a timely landing, without affecting other Cash Flow activities.
Every Business has Three (3) tiers of Checks Disbursements Groupings:
a) Must Pay Group- These are payments that can hurt you, either in cost or ability to operate your business, if they are not paid. These include items like Taxes, Rents, Payroll and Service Charges.
b) Important to Pay Group - These are payments, that have a reasonable grace period, and if not paid, a financial penalty can be incurred, as a result of Nonpayment. These include Utility Bills , Credit Card Payments and Insurance Payments .
c) Flexible Payment Plan Group - Suppliers, Vendors and Wholesalers, that supply most Small Businesses are the best sources of flexible credit financing. Most of them will continue to work with you, if you arrange a regular payment plan with them.
2) Make Payments on your Revenue, not on uncollected Sales : I am sure, that none of us will want to land a plane, hoping that the runway is beneath us in the fog bank, as also Business owners, it is not advisable to make projected payments on uncollected revenue. You may wander, what happens to Credit Facilities, Guess What, Most Credit Facilities still have a timeline for payment.
3) Do not use Payroll Taxes to float your Business Operations: Studies have shown that most Business Owners use the Tax liabilities, collected during payroll, to float their businesses, rather than remitting the payments to the appropriate Tax Authorities. They don't realize that they spend more in potential penalties, fees , interests, time and aggravation, if they engage in this act. Tax Liabilities grow, if they are not remitted at the appropriate timing.
4) Establish Relationships with your Credit Provider: It is very important for every business owner to plan for a rainy day. Having a great relationship with a vendor, that gives you a credit facility, avoids cash flow storms, which might bring in a sense of desperation or lack of control.
5) Invest in a Good Bookkeeping/ Accounting Service: It is important for Business Owners to have a grasp of their cash flow and understand the effect on their business growth. A Good Bookkeeping service is invaluable to your business, particularly in preparing your monthly financial reports and cash flow statements, which will help you, see how your Business is doing as well as maintaining your Business Cash flow.
Understanding and Managing Cash flow has been a challenge for many Business owners, but with the application of these tips, it is possible to grow your Business to a greater level , and also have enough funds for other activities, that will bring more revenue into your Business.
Please feel free to contact us on 202-422-4586, if you will need further help on how to manage your Business Cash flow and financial Reports. We will love to help you. Remember: The best time to take control of your Cash Flow is RIGHT NOW.
|Posted on July 2, 2014 at 1:55 AM||comments (111)|
Welcome to the month of July. We are done with the first half of the year and started the countdown to the remaining half of the year.
Our Newsletter for this month is on an integral part of every business; an area that is generally misunderstood by most business owners, but interestingly plays an important role in every organization. Have you taken time to look at your Cash flow Statement? Can you tell where Funds are disbursed in your Business? Do you understand the effect of your Spendings? The art of struggling to understand and manage your cash flow can be a huge distraction to your business; in this series, we will be providing you with quick tips on the basic method of understanding your cash flow.
Our Areas of Concentration will be on:
- Definition of Cash Flow
- Drivers of Cash Flow in a Business
- Facts about Cash Flow
- Quick Tips on Understanding your Cash flow and applying it to your Business.
- Managing your Cash Flow effectively.
What is Cash Flow?
Cash Flowis the movement of money into or out of a business, project or financial product, and can be measured at any specified period of time.
The Following are the drivers of Cash flow in a Business:
It is worthy to note that your Cash Flow originates from 3 Basic Operations:
a) Cash Flow from Operations
b) Cash Flow from Investing
c) Cash flow from Financing
Most Business Owners have problems with Understanding their Cash Flow because of the following facts:
a) A Profit or Loss in a Business does not equal Cash Flow.
b) An Increase in Cash in your Business is not always good.
c) A Decrease in Cash is not always bad.
Many Business Owners have problems understanding and interpreting their Cash flow, because of the technicalities involved; but I want to challenge you today, to take the simple test below, write down your answers and put it into practice, and watch your business grow; I bet you will be so thankful for this enlightenment:
By doing this exercise periodically, you will have a better grasp of your cash flow, and see its effect on your Business growth. I will like you to try this exercise and forward your feedbacks. In my next article, I will be giving you tips on how to effectively manage your Cash flow in your Business.
Please feel free to contact us, if you will need further help in understanding your Cash flow and producing your Cash Flow Report. We will love to help you.
Remember: The best time to take control of your Cash Flow is RIGHT NOW.
|Posted on October 1, 2013 at 3:20 AM||comments (12)|
Recently, A Client of ours requested to know the health of his company and was of the opinion that the total income, that his company made was enough to prove that his company was healthy. We had to explain to him, that the company's total income was not enough to show the financial health of his company. We realize that a lot of business owners always make this wrong assumption. We hope that by the time, you finish reading this article, you will have a better understanding of how to assess your business/organization's financial health position.
It is important to note that, to assess your company's financial health, you will need more information than your Gross Income, to see how well your business/organization is doing. There are three important financial information, that you will need and these will also help you in making your Business decisions. They are:
It is important to note that by combining these three statements, you will be able to assess the financial health of your company at any given time. Please note that you NEED to have a GOOD BOOKKEEPING SYSTEM in place, because this is the only way that your statements can be accurate, and with this, you will be able to make accurate business decisions.
If you need help with assessing the financial health of your business/organization's and also preparing any of the statements listed above, We are available to help you out. GIVE US A CALL TODAY ON 202-422-4586,and see how we can assist you. We will also give you suggestions, that will enhance your business and help your company grow.
Please also feel free to fill out our contact form, so that we can get in touch with you and respond to your questions. We will love to help you.
|Posted on June 19, 2013 at 2:07 AM||comments (2)|
Recently, I was discussing with a friend, who was competing with her sister in selling their hand made beads. The conversation was about raising her prices from ten cents to twenty five cents per bead. I asked her what she needed to achieve from the increase and what areas of her life, that she feels the increase will make an impact, hence asking her the five most important things that matters to her in life.
She thought about it, looked at me and said in this order: “First, My Family, then My House, Television, Candy and then Money”. Impressed that she had come up with exactly five items, I probed a little deeper.
“Mary, what do you need to get the candy that you love?’
“Money”, she said.
“And how about the TV, what do you need to get that?”
“And how about your house?”
“Money”, she replied once again.
And then I asked, “How about your family, what do you need to get them?”
Just as quickly, she replied, “Love”
“That’s right, “I said, but don’t you think that maybe you have to reorder your list? You see, if you need money to buy the candy, the house and the TV, then don’t you think money should be more important than what it can buy?
In that instance, she thought about it and said, I was right, and within that short period, I introduced her to the law of money, a law that serves as the foundation for wise spending.
THE LAW OF MONEY: PEOPLE FIRST.THEN MONEY.THEN THINGS
You see, most of us are just like Mary, we value things more than we value money. We care more about having what money can buy than we care about having money itself. When we follow the law of money, we will find out that, we are respectful of money, and if we follow it and keep what we have and spend, it will make us truly rich. We will analyze each category:
The difference in your perception is the VALUE SYSTEM that you applied- A Room filled with things is okay, whereas a room full of money is not.
In conclusion, when we work hard for our money, maybe forty hours or more a week and then go shopping, buy food, clothes and stuff, we usually say that we don’t know where the money went. This is also applicable, when we pay for services, that we really need; but why don't you consider this- CHANGE your perspective now, if we valued money over things and over items it can buy, then we would know exactly where our finance is going.
We should change our money/thing ratio, so that we will have more money than things, this will also encourage us to take great pleasure in seeing our money and watching it grow. With this approach, we would always know when we can afford something that we need and will be more likely to be able to buy the things we TRULY WANT to make us happy.
So next time, you go out to spend money, always remember that you are not throwing the money away, but you are exchanging it for something that has a value to you.
Please feel free to give us a call today to get your finances organized, so that you can capture where your expenses are going and invariably increase the value you need for the important areas in your life.