Many of us herald the New Year as the perfect time for a ‘new start’, whether personally or professionally. HMRC figures reflect this, indicating that January-March is consistently the most popular time of year to incorporate a new business.
The festive period can be the perfect time to mull over big business dreams and a new-found motivation, as the clock strikes midnight on New Year’s Eve, will see many take the plunge in pursuit of a new career where they are their own boss!
New Year > New Business
If one of your New Year’s resolutions is to start your own business, it’s essential that you’ve come to this decision via careful consideration and thorough planning – for example:
• Have you considered exactly why you want to start a new business?
• What do you know about your chosen industry, your potential customers and your competition?
• What do you want to achieve, both in the short-term and in the long-term?
• How will you go about running your business and achieving your goals?
• Are your finances in order/do you have the necessary finance in place?
• Do you have access to the advice you need to make your business a success?
Bumps in the road are inevitable, but spending the right amount of time devising your business plan and ironing out the smaller details early on can save you a lot of time, money and stress further down the line.
But what if you’re already an established business-owner? Well, you can capitalise on the New Year ‘spirit’, just as budding entrepreneurs can.
In fact, what better time to examine your development during 2018 and to rethink your strategy for the next 12 months?
Rethinking your business strategy
1. Review goals and address inefficiencies
Resolve to stop wasting valuable time on inefficient processes and make a conscious effort to be more productive! Without a doubt, you must spend time on core business functions. However, this should not be to the detriment of innovation and implementing new strategies for growth.
2. Embrace technology
With Making Tax Digital just around the corner, relying on outdated systems and technology is no longer adequate, nor conducive to ensuring your business continues to evolve in an increasingly competitive economic environment. Embrace emerging technologies and new solutions to future-proof your business in 2019.
3. Don’t let compliance slip
Your business should always be compliant with the latest rules and regulations – and the New Year is as good a time as any time to ensure your T’s are crossed and I’s dotted!
Diarise the key deadlines your business has with HMRC and Companies House. This is essential, as missing these deadlines will have an adverse affect on your business.
4. Catch-up with your adviser
If you work with an accountant or financial adviser, think about scheduling a catch-up with them. Evaluate the past 12 months together and use them as a sounding board for your ideas going into the year ahead.
If you don’t have an accountant or an adviser, now could be a good time to change that; particularly when you consider the changes many businesses will face this year because of the digitisation of the tax system and Brexit.
5. Prioritise proper planning
Now and every month this year, make planning a priority. Without planning, you cannot expect your business to be flexible or resilient to change.
Also, make time to review your performance against what you have budgeted. This is easier than ever with the new cloud based accounting packages available.
How can George Hay help?
Whether you have a fledgling start-up, an established business, or the beginnings of a sound entrepreneurial idea that you dream of bringing to life – our professional team of chartered accountants can work with you and help you to realise your ambitions.
From business plans, to tax queries and from management accounts to financial reporting and payroll, we have it covered. Our solutions are designed to save you time and money, and to eliminate the unnecessary stress associated with running an organisation.