Now that tax time is over, here are three things you need to be doing to help your business…

1. Communicate

….with your CPA or Accountant

Review your tax return …he has time to go over the details with you now that his “crunch time” is over

Get the year-end adjusting journal entries and adjustments from him to update your QuickBooks or accounting software to keep your keep your books accurate…

Ask him to help or show you what things you can do to help his life easier at tax time…recording entries in the correct account might prevent all these journal entries in the first place…and you might learn a thing or two in the process!

Ask him any software questions you have …chances are he’s using the same software (QuickBooks, Wave, etc.) as you are

…with your Banker

Now is the time to bring a copy of your business return to him and discuss….if you ever have to borrow money, it’s good to have history with your banker… even if you’re not going to borrow money or open up another account right now,  it’s always good to inquire about the rates and the borrowing process.

…with your Retirement Planner

If you don’t have one, get one! He can tell you the pros and cons of each type of plan and how your business can benefit by having one

2. Save

…taxes

by keeping better track of your business miles

Every hundred miles you drive, you can write off about $55 in mileage expense… keep a log in your vehicle or better yet, there’s an app for that! …every little bit helps and by the end of the year all those miles driven to the bank or supply store or to a customer add up to a nice deduction!

…money

to cover the tax bite at year end

By saving during the year, you avoid having to borrow money at tax time to pay your bill or even worse, paying penalties and interest if you don’t pay on time…

Even if you set up quarterly tax payments, you should put money aside to cover that chunk of money you have to pay to the feds or to the state…

If you open a savings or money market account instead of leaving it in a non-interest-bearing checking account, you might even make some extra money

…time

Did you ever wonder how nice it would be to get back or recover 5 to 20 hours per month of your time?

That saved time could be used to market your business and pick up new clients

By outsourcing your bookkeeping or payroll work, you open up more time for you to meet with prospective customers or meet with existing customers and offer them extra services

Your time is better spent increasing your revenue than doing admin work that someone else can probably do better, more accurately and faster…sure, you have to pay them but the cost of subcontracting out the bookkeeping is probably less than the revenue gained with a new customer.

3. Plan

…your business continuation

What would happen to your business if you became critically ill or called away due to a family member crisis?

What happens to your customers or clients if such a scenario would occur?… you’ve heard the old adage, “fail to plan, plan to fail”

Start creating a checklist of important resources and phone numbers… talk with someone you trust to take over your business temporarily or permanently if things go south

If you got a family and your business is your “retirement plan”, the loss of customers won’t make life easier for your loved ones

…for your next tax return

Sure, you just finished filing your tax return but now is the best time to plan for the current year return

How does the new tax law affect my business?  What expenses should I cut back or increase due to the new tax law? Should I invest in new equipment or machinery for my business?

Talk with your CPA or tax preparer …go over the year-to-date numbers and set up a plan of action to take advantage of the tax law and avoid problems later on

…on making your business better and more efficient

Look into outsourcing your bookkeeping work so you can spend more quality time increasing your revenues

Get rid of old equipment that is killing your bottom line with repairs and high maintenance costs

Invest in modern technology that saves you and your employees time and frustration

Review processes within your organization that need to be updated and/or fine-tuned

Take a look at your personnel and make sure you’ve got the right person for every job or position in your company

Plan to make your life easier in this very complicated world…

Art Goudey, Jr., President and sole-owner of Compass Consulting Services, PA in Raleigh, NC.  He is also a Certified QuickBooks® Pro Advisor, a member of the American Institute for Certified Public Accountants (AICPA), the North Carolina Association of CPA’s (NCACPA) and is a former chair of the NCACPA Technology Committee. art@compassconsulting.net