COVID has haunted small business owners for nearly 2 years now. It’s time we faced it down and got on with doing business. Here are a list of things that you can do to strengthen your business and get everything all fired up ready for a strong trading year.
- First, face the beast off – revise your COVID plan, including a plan for what needs to be done if you end up defined as a close contact point. Originally when we were all told to get our COVID plans done it was explained it was just 1/2 a page – NO MORE. You need to have it all written down – and there are quite a number of points to address. Get it done. Link is here:
- Get your bookwork up to date and keep it up to date. If a grant is available for you to apply for – this will be one of the main things that will be asked for. This includes tax returns and BAS returns.
- Work out how much you owe to creditors. This includes unpaid superannuation for staff, tax obligations, rent and unpaid suppliers. It always feels a bit like hopping on the scales after Christmas, but you cannot properly plan the way ahead unless you know the size of the unpaid bills still waiting before you start. Even if they are enormous – at least you know you need to get some finance sorted and can beat the credit rating problems before they start.
- Examine the customer debtors – do you have a strong system in place that ensures your customers pay you on time and keep to a payment plan? Now is a great time to get this established. A lot of times just making a quick call to your overdue client may be all that is needed, even if it is to plan ahead how they are going to pay your firm.
- Examine the status of your supply chains. One of the biggest changes we have had to face is the slowing of supply of goods along with large increases in prices. Knowing that getting a product in takes 6 weeks will alter either how you sell it to a customer or how much inventory you pre-stock.
- Do a quick audit of your prices for your products and services. Do they still give you a good markup? Could you supply them differently to alter how they are billed at the end point. (is it better for a single large bill or several smaller ones over a period of time)
- Only after you have addressed all of the above you can now look at your sales. Pulling up reports that show sales each month helps you understand any patterns of customer behaviour. Are you selling enough to cover the rent? Is there a strong connection between sales numbers and how much you spend on wages?
Next: how to make change in your small business ….