Accounting Tips For Small Businesses

With tax time nearly upon us, many small businesses and first time entrepreneurs are scrambling to get their accounting information straightened out in order to file on time. When many small business owners think of accounting, they tend to associate it with income tax preparation and filing. The accounting for your small business should not be relegated to tax time. Accounting information can help business owners make better decisions, and improve the management of their business. It can also help them secure financing, and facilitate reporting to stakeholders (such as creditors, banks, and government agencies), and it can tip them off to any serious problems that might be brewing, such as dwindling cash resources, or debt burdens which may become overwhelming.

The accounting aspect of many small businesses is often the most neglected. Most small business owners don’t feel they have the time or expertise to devote to keeping their books. Let’s face it, most small business owners didn’t start a business because they were eager to deal with the finance and accounting aspects of it. The accounting is a function done at the end of the year for tax purposes. This attitude is unfortunate, because the accounting results of a business can represent a wealth of information, and can help business owners make better decisions. The fact is that accounting information really serves as an indicator of how healthy your business is. Think of your accounting information as a reading on a thermometer.

If you only see the value in accounting at tax time, you are missing out on an opportunity to get a true picture (and not just a “gut feeling) of how your business is performing financially. It is not likely that the individual who prepared your information is going to give you any tips or guidance with respect to the management of your business (unless your accountant or bookkeeper is also a relative or associate). Remember, in this instance you’ve paid them to prepare information for tax filing purposes, not provide consulting services on how to improve the performance of your business.

If you’ve already paid someone to prepare financial information for you, then the information is all there, waiting to be used. Business owners need not be the ones who prepare financial information, but they’d better be ready to be the ones who pay attention, and interpret, that financial information (or have a trusted associate who is willing to do this for them – although most accountants don’t come cheap). A responsible small business owner makes it a point to understand how to read financial statements, and draw conclusions from the information contained therein.

Unfortunately, you can’t really purchase accounting advice tailored to your small business over the internet. The good news is that you don’t need to be a financial genius to understand your balance sheet. There are many resources available on the web which can guide you through the process of understanding your financial statements. You may be just starting out, and looking for potential solutions. Or, you may be a seasoned business owner looking for some tips. There is a wide variety of solutions available, and these range from tutorials and e-books, to accounting and bookkeeping software. Learn more about these here: Accounting Tips for Small Businesses

With tax time nearly upon us, many small businesses and first time entrepreneurs are scrambling to get their accounting information straightened out in order to file on time. When many small business owners think of accounting, they tend to associate it with income tax preparation and filing. The accounting for your small business should not be relegated to tax time. Accounting information can help business owners make better decisions, and improve the management of their business. It can also help them secure financing, and facilitate reporting to stakeholders (such as creditors, banks, and government agencies), and it can tip them off to any serious problems that might be brewing, such as dwindling cash resources, or debt burdens which may become overwhelming.

The accounting aspect of many small businesses is often the most neglected. Most small business owners don’t feel they have the time or expertise to devote to keeping their books. Let’s face it, most small business owners didn’t start a business because they were eager to deal with the finance and accounting aspects of it. The accounting is a function done at the end of the year for tax purposes. This attitude is unfortunate, because the accounting results of a business can represent a wealth of information, and can help business owners make better decisions. The fact is that accounting information really serves as an indicator of how healthy your business is. Think of your accounting information as a reading on a thermometer.

If you only see the value in accounting at tax time, you are missing out on an opportunity to get a true picture (and not just a “gut feeling) of how your business is performing financially. It is not likely that the individual who prepared your information is going to give you any tips or guidance with respect to the management of your business (unless your accountant or bookkeeper is also a relative or associate). Remember, in this instance you’ve paid them to prepare information for tax filing purposes, not provide consulting services on how to improve the performance of your business.

If you’ve already paid someone to prepare financial information for you, then the information is all there, waiting to be used. Business owners need not be the ones who prepare financial information, but they’d better be ready to be the ones who pay attention, and interpret, that financial information (or have a trusted associate who is willing to do this for them – although most accountants don’t come cheap). A responsible small business owner makes it a point to understand how to read financial statements, and draw conclusions from the information contained therein.

Unfortunately, you can’t really purchase accounting advice tailored to your small business over the internet. The good news is that you don’t need to be a financial genius to understand your balance sheet. There are many resources available on the web which can guide you through the process of understanding your financial statements. You may be just starting out, and looking for potential solutions. Or, you may be a seasoned business owner looking for some tips. There is a wide variety of solutions available, and these range from tutorials and e-books, to accounting and bookkeeping software.