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Five top tips for finance directors

To be successful when it comes to your company’s budget and finances, you need to do so much more than just balance the books. Whilst the figures are vitally important, developing relationships will also help you work better. Here are my tips to help keep finance directors at the top of their game.

1. Keep on top of your cashflow

  • When it comes to budgets, it is standard practice to prepare a detailed budget for the next 12 months, with an overview for the 12 months after that. This should be a rolling programme that is regularly reviewed.
  • By constantly monitoring your working capital, you will be able to keep an eye on stock, trade debtors, trade creditors and cash at the bank. By knowing what’s happening with them at any given time, you will find it a lot easier to keep your cashflow in balance.
  • If you have a lot of debtors, it might be worth investigating invoice discounting, where finance companies use your unpaid accounts as collateral against a credit facility. This will keep your cashflow running, enabling you to keep your books balanced and to pay your creditors and fund growth.

2. Create excellent client relationships

It’s always a good idea to develop good relationships with your clients. If you have a good rapport with them, they are much more likely to feel comfortable enough to get in touch if there is a problem, enabling you to sort it out as soon as possible. Having a point of contact in your client’s company is also helpful in case of queries about invoices or credit notes.

3. Keep your suppliers happy

In order to develop good relationships with your suppliers, it helps to pay promptly! If you are doing business with one-man-band companies, try to pay your suppliers as soon as you can rather than wait until the end of the month. It will help them considerably and will therefore foster a good relationship. One day, you may need their goodwill…

4. Foster good interaction with your team

Every member of your team needs to pull together, so make sure you have good relationships with everyone at all levels, from your assistants to your CEO.

5. Make sure you have a good relationship with your accountant

If you have a good relationship with your accountant, you will get so much more out of them. Don’t see them as just someone who does the audit once a year, you need them to understand your business to enable you to bounce ideas off each other about your business and how you might be able to improve it. A good understanding of your business will also help them with that yearly audit, and they will be much more likely to be able to give useful feedback.

If you are looking for an accountant to build a good, long-term relationship with, come and talk to us. We help our clients through the lifecycle of their companies, with the advice they need when they need it, helping them achieve their goals.

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