Many businesses find the process of putting together their monthly financial reports time consuming and frustrating. Some may choose to forgo the process altogether or opt for reports less frequently or with less data.
Yet growth reports are vital to understanding where your business stands, and where and how it can grow. However, daunting it may seem, the potential benefits speak for themselves – regardless of the size, scale, or industry your organisation operates within.
Let’s explore some of the key focus areas where you can expect to benefit by producing, analysing, and understanding your growth reports.
Adjust your plans
Knowing what’s happening within your organisation helps you change your approach rapidly and efficiently where something isn’t working as it should. While most companies plan for the future, not all of these will be realistic to implement – or at least not right now.
Understanding exactly where you stand financially will not only identify areas for course correction, but also present you with new opportunities that you can more effectively pursue.
It’s common for companies to fear seeing the cold light of day that their financial data may present – but with the right approach, even reports that don’t live up to expectations will give you valuable insights on what needs to be shelved until you have more cashflow, and what you can put into action today.
Grow the company
It’s almost impossible to grow your company without access to accurate, relevant data. That’s where growth reports come in.
To grow realistically and effectively, you need to know what’s happening within the organisation – with limited gaps between reporting. Failure to do so could result in problems being masked or important details being overlooked.
Getting into a pattern with your reports will allow you to see where money is being spent, and also analyse the effectiveness of that spend. Where can you cut costs, and where should you be spending more? What’s going right, and what’s going wrong?
By leaving longer gaps between checking the financial performance of your business, you’re less able to respond in an agile way to be opportunities. You will struggle to see both positive and negative patterns emerging and reacting to change will become a much more complex task.
We recommend comparing each monthly report to the most recent ones for an optimal overview of progress and growth across all the vital measures.
Get a better financial deal
Many companies rely on obtaining extra finance to make big changes or perform research and development tasks. Without understanding the nuances of your situation as a business, there’s no way of knowing what you’re eligible for.
This works both ways, as any financial organisation you seek funding from will want to see valid, current records of your income and expenditure, as well as clear reasoning as to why these financials look as they do.
If you’re able to provide this information, you’ll stand a much better chance of getting a preferential deal on loans and credit, as well as having the reassurance that your company’s financial present and future is in good hands.
Keep up to date
Companies that don’t have accurate, up to date records are at an immediate disadvantage when compared to their more prepared competitors.
Preparing business accounts on a monthly basis opens the gateway to a closer understanding of your business performance and will also help you to identify any potential slippage or issues that need to be addressed promptly.
When reports are prepared less frequently, there’s plenty of time in between for complex problems to develop – and these problems will then require much more complicated solutions to find a fix.
Knowing exactly where your company is each month provides crucial peace of mind and can also positively impact your decision making.
By keeping a firm grip on the direction of the business, you’ll be able to make informed decisions about things such as who to hire (and when), whether you need to replenish stock, and whether you have the ability to invest in new products or services that could positively impact cashflow.
There is no better way to collect this information than in real time, allowing you to respond in the same way and prevent issues from spiralling out of control.
Understand your cashflow
Just as it’s hard to look at the bigger picture without knowing where you are right now, a lack of insight into your cashflow situation could prove catastrophic.
The best metrics to assess are both the incoming cash and your outgoings. This will help you to identify any discrepancies and find a fix. During a time when many businesses are feeling the economic pinch, getting on top of any niggling worries is essential.
This has knock-on effects across the board, too. You’ll no longer feel compelled to commit to purchases you don’t need, and you’ll feel more confident in making investments that will benefit the organisation.
How can you make your growth reports more effective?
There are a few ways to ensure your growth reports make a big impact. While we recommend monthly reporting, the process of gathering the information you need for these reports begins much earlier.
1. Keep daily records
This might seem complicated, but by making it a part of your daily routine, you’ll no longer have to scramble to gather data at the last minute. Instead, keep daily records of your financial activity, and make it as accurate as possible.
When it comes time to build out your report, the data will be ready to collate and analyse.
2. Review and optimise
If the format of your reports isn’t working, try something new. It’s a lengthy process and one that takes some time to perfect. With time and practice, you’ll find a system that suits your needs and builds a more successful financial future.
Looking for business accountancy services
Direct Peak provides a dedicated business tax accountant, who will prepare your annual accounts and tax returns. They will be on hand to answer any tax queries you have.
Your business tax accountant will ensure that the company is set up in the most tax-efficient way and that you are claiming for all the correct expenses to maximise your earnings.