If you run a small or medium-sized business in Australia, there’s immense benefit in utilising the services of a business advisor, accountant or even a commercial lawyer.
However adept you may be at business planning, tax compliance, property, wealth management or cashflow forecasting, you can bet an advisor is even better.
After all, advisors have dedicated their scholastic and professional lives to becoming experts in these fields and there’s a compelling reason they exist.
If you aren’t utilising the services of an accountant or advisor, the question remains, ‘why’?
Do what you do best and leave the rest
Whether you run a retail store, photography business, café, consultancy or trade business, it’s likely that this is where your skillset, passion and expertise lie. You don’t need to be a business management or tax expert at the same time.
The idea behind using an advisory to manage the more fickle financial aspects of your business is clear – do what you do best and leave the fiddly complexities of business management to those who do this best.
Let the experts do their job and you’ll reap the benefits as you concentrate on your vocation. Think of it as an investment, not an expense.
COVID-19 changed the game
Leading up to the surprise outbreak of COVID-19, you may have had your business humming along nicely.
Your profits and cashflow may have been high, your compliance could have been top notch and your future planning might have been on the money.
Are you sure this is still the case?
The multiple angles from which COVID-19 has attacked Australian small businesses can’t be ignored. It’s also the perfect storm to necessitate increased reliance on financial experts, business advisors and accounting services.
Here’s some services on offer by advisors that have strong implications during this pandemic:
- Cashflow management services to combat loss of revenue.
- Business planning to mitigate the changing landscape and address the growing need to adapt and replan.
- Compliance services to take advantage of the rapidly shifting compliance and taxation changes that have occurred.
- Forecasting to navigate the increasingly complex projected financial outcomes and opportunities.
- Retirement planning to plot a course to financial security in a time of uncertainty.
- Investment advice to make better sense of a radically shifting stock market.
- Property advice to respond to a shifting market.
- Legal advice on a variety of matters including property and staffing.
This is the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the unique advantages of taking up with an advisory service as the pandemic continues to skew the usual business landscape.
Decide on the level of advice required
You can take up a variety of services under the umbrella of business advice and it’s easy to pick and choose what you need and in what capacity.
If you’re wary of expenditure, ROI and outlay, it’s easy to shop around and choose your level of service.
In some cases, you may simply require ‘on-off’ advice. Perhaps you want someone to review your business plan and will then be on your way.
Maybe you want advice on the recently shifted instant asset write-off scheme and that’s it.
Maybe you need a few sessions on tax and compliance.
In other cases, you probably want more of an ongoing relationship with an advisor and regularly check in to have a continual stream of profit enhancing and cost cutting advice that ensures continual success.
In this case, you simply get to choose what advice you need and when.
What type of advice do you really need?
Advisory services come in different guises, although many services can be offered under a single umbrella by an agency. In fact, there’s a strong industry push to offer many service types at once so it’s not always so clearly divided.
What do you need?
Accountants make up the majority of ‘go-to’ advisors for many businesses. A business owner would generally seek advice from an accountant for tax advice/submission/planning, BAS statements, PAYG, cloud accounting and the management of financial records.
A commercial lawyer will come into play largely when considering the purchase or sale of assets. When a transaction or business move is hinged on complex legal requirements, you’ll want to take up the advisory services of a commercial lawyer.
A more generalised role would be that of the business advisor. Not only can they usually do what an accountant can, but they also offer more consistent business planning advice. They’re the jack of all trades, so to speak.
You may want to form a relationship with a business advisor for more general advice relating to cashflow management, future planning, cost cutting advice, performance reviews, and of course compliance.
They’ll generally give you more holistic advice around your business’ health and direction, making them invaluable, especially in troubled times.
If you’d like to find an advisor near you, use our free search tool.