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Why it’s crucial for your business to implement regular cashflow forecasting

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Cash flow forecasting is an art of estimating cash inflows and outflows in a business over a specified period of time – usually one year. Based on the cash flow forecast, the business is able to establish if it should borrow, how much to borrow, plus when and how the loan should be repaid.

This is the cash flow budget, also referred to as a cash flow projection. A business can predict the bank balance at the end of the specified duration.

An example of a three-month cash flow forecast for a firm is as shown in the table below:

 

Objectives of the Cash Flow Forecast

A company uses the cash flow forecast to;

  • Point out deficits in cash balances. If a forecast returns a negative value a business has to put in place measures to counter shortfalls. A good contingency plan would be to ensure there is sufficient bank overdraft provision.
  • Analyse the business performance against financial objectives set in the business plan. Using a cash flow budget will tell whether objectives are met or not and to what extent.
  • Determine if the firm’s trading performance turns into cash. The trading performance is not just measured by just the amount indicated at the end. Measuring your daily or weekly trading performance is a key tool in achieving consistent long-term gains. This includes monitoring revenues, costs and profits.

 

 

Importance of Cashflow Forecasting

 

If a business, for whatever reason, runs into debt and is unable to acquire finance, it will become insolvent. So, that means that cash is king and cash flow is the bloodstream that keeps any business running, especially small and medium enterprises (SMEs) – and start-ups.

Their survival is 100% dependent on the management’s cash flow prediction. The key reasons cash flow forecasting is necessary to include:

  • Debt repayment assessment- makes sure the business can be able to pay its employees and suppliers. The suppliers make sure the business is not out of supplies while the employees make sure the business is actually running.
  • Spot potential shortfalls- If a business can predict future deficiencies from the onset, it can be able to put in place measures to mitigate shortfalls. Early warning signs will help the business decide on what course to take.
  • For stakeholders and other external entities like banks may require regular cash flow forecasting reports. Stakeholders want to know where their investment is heading. If you have a loan at the bank they want to assess the likelihood of the business not making repayments at regular intervals
  • A general financial planning discipline – having regular cash flow forecast is a part of the important management process that should be carried out regardless of financial certainty.
  • Identify problems in customer payments. This is very important especially for businesses that do not deal with cash and credit cards. A business that does not have a point of sale and heavily operates of credit basis need to track how often and promptly the customers make payments.
  • Assess liquidity and Solvency- A business can tell the flow of the cash equivalent. Therefore, the liquidity and solvency position as well can be maintained certainty and timing of cash generation can be estimated
  • Evaluation of cash flows in future – are current operating activities sufficient for a stable future? Do they meet various payments e.g. dividends, taxes, debts and expenses
  • Information users of accounting in different ways
  1. Assess a business’s ability to pay its obligations promptly
  2. Analysis and interpretation of various trends for future course of action

 

The downside to Using Cashflow Forecasting

 

For purposes of strategic goals and removing uncertainty,  businesses rely on cash flow forecasts to make long-term plans. The technique has been applied globally and for a very long period of time as a key to financial independence.

It has basically become an integral part in the financial management process. Is there a flip side of cash flow forecasting? Well, obviously the approach is a great deal important but it also has a few cons.

Below is a list of some limitations of cash flow forecast

Unforeseen factors– the forecast can be skewed due to external factors experienced by the firm. Increased competition or changes in government policies can change expected cash inflows and outflows.

This means the initial data has a big variation gap than expected. Unforeseen factors have to be accounted for and the end value will not remain the same.

Inadequate Information– drafting the forecast means relying on the limited information available. Accountants strive to gather all information to fill in the estimates and calculate the expected figures. However, since the figures are not accurate the results might be wrong.

Unstable business environment– In the business environment, everything is volatile. What was of service yesterday may be useless today. To manage the stable nature of the business environment, firms must learn to adjust their expectations as the environment changes whether it is in their favour or against them.

Best estimates – cash flow forecasting is dependent on a certain degree of probability regardless of how valuable information is. There is no 100% guaranteed accuracy even in the short run. As the forecast period increases, so does the degree of inaccuracy.

Cash (£)

JAN FEB

MARCH

Beginning of the month

250

200

150

Inflow

200

250

200

Outflow

250

300

300

Net flow

-50

-50

-100

End of the month

200

150

50

The difference between a business that thrives and the one that fails is mostly cash management. Having little cash may lead to being unable to operate the business at normal levels.

Therefore, businesses may be forced to pass on profitable ventures or resort to taking out loans to avoid liquidity issues. In most cases, the business may have to shut down altogether.

To avoid all these issues businesses rely on cash flow forecasts to give them a sense of what to expect and give them a chance to better prepare for the future.

No one time the cash flow forecast will give precise figures and be spot on and that is why it is termed as a prediction. Therefore conducting regular cash flow forecasts on your business is the best approach in preparing for future financial needs.

Hi. I am Muhammad Mubeen. I am SEO Expat and Wordpress Websites Developer &  Blogger. 27 years old. I help entrepreneurs become go-to in their industry. And, I like helping the next one in line. You can follow my journey on my blog, All Note AbleB2B Guru PlanCross ArticleDj Soft WorldFinance PressHufforbesLife Health Press BusinessStrong ArticleThe Top StoriesUS Update ZoneBusiness TodayScience NewsEssay Writing AcademicElite Guide Health If you need any post so you can email me on my this Email: mubeenh782@gmail.com  

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Finance

8 Marketing Tips Your SME needs to reach its full potential

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not the same as advertising

Marketing is often equated with advertising. Advertising is just a tiny part of marketing. So if you feel that you have few customers, no repurchases, too little profit, too much cost or no thoughtful offering. then start with the following points.

As you become aware of the opportunities that are available to your business, the uncomfortable feeling that something must finally happen will quickly dissipate!

2. Build up a satisfied regular clientele

Why look for new customers when you already have enough “fans” in your own ranks? Blind customer acquisition overtakes the sense that you already have existing customers. Maybe they have not consumed your offer for some time, or you buy too seldom?

To encourage these customers to buy again is much cheaper, faster, and more promising than acquiring new customers. Treat every customer like a king.

3. Spend your time well

If you work in the service sector, you usually can not “produce in reserve.” You can not cut your customers’ hair if they’re not there yet. When your workforce is needed, you should be on hand.

Opportunity cost is the magic word. So think about what others can do faster or better and outsource these activities. That’s how you focus on yourself and your limited hours on the core business.

4. Employ a conventional resource planning

Every company has limited resources. It would be great if you had a large downtown shop and four assistants would read the customer’s every wish and you could run big advertising campaigns all year round.

However, the reality is very different. The idea is to divide your resources well. For this, you need to know who (keyword: target group) you want to achieve something (keyword: target).

For example, today it is said that every business needs a website. In my opinion, this is only partially true. For instance, if you offer medical foot care and your target group is mostly over 70, a website may not be the first drug of choice.

In this case, regular visits to the retirement home with flyers could bring significantly more success. So if you have to limit yourself to one or two marketing communication activities for cost or time reasons, think about where you’re most likely to meet your target audience.

5. Maintain a good relationship with your employees

Yes, they cost a lot. Sometimes you get upset about them. But then you laugh with them again. And yes, finding good employees is not always easy. That’s why you should nurture your employees.

When was the last time you just acknowledged a colleague? A little attention here, a friendly word there or the short-term holiday wishes – only these little things show your employees how much you appreciate them.

By the way, numerous studies prove that satisfied employees have a lasting positive effect on your company through “Word of Mouth,” i.e., verbal recommendations.

6. Acquire new customers through online marketing measures

Online marketing offers many instruments for new customer acquisition. New customers can not only be acquired via the website but also via e-mail marketing measures. The strategy to be followed always depends on which target groups you are targeting.

The focus should be on getting potential customers where they happen to be. Young consumers are best reached via mobile devices and location-based services.

B2B customers are more likely to be reached with PR measures via online press portals and through a target group-oriented SEO strategy.

7. The good old newsletter

As mentioned in point 2, existing customers are often more lucrative than new customers. Depending on the nature of your business you will not be in constant contact. Creating a newsletter here helps to bridge the gap.

Therefore, ask each customer right at the beginning whether you may send them occasional news. Do not spam your customers, but inform them regularly about news, offers, and background information.

Important: If you have a very wide range, you may have to set up several newsletters with different priorities. This prevents you from informing customers about topics they are not interested in. The preferred topics can also be queried during data acquisition.

A newsletter is always a good way to get feedback. Be open for suggestions for improvement. So you’ll build in a flash – not just in the social media – a fan base.

8. Invest wisely

With all the love for the “Do it yourself” mentality: A professional marketing cannot be replaced by anything. It would, therefore, be a great pity if you invest a lot of money in your business, perhaps a good location, further education, etc and then fall into a do-it-yourself mentality in marketing. You should invest in commercial finance so that you can employ the experts needed to help you.

Yes, a marketing professional will cost you some money. But if he has some idea of his trade, this is one of the best investments you will ever make for your SME.

A few years ago, online marketing was a “nice-to-have” for some small and medium-sized businesses, and now such failures are likely to avenge bitterly.

The rapid increase in Internet usage finally speaks an unequivocal language. As print media find it harder to reach audiences, offline marketing will become less important.

SMEs that want to prepare themselves for future challenges will not be able to permanently ignore this trend and sooner or later have to invest massively in online marketing measures.

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Finance

Here’s How You Should Avoid Becoming an SBA Loan Defaulter

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There are many problems that are faced by applicants when they are applying for specific programs and requests. They can be disqualified of the request, are unable to meet the specifications of the demands or the applicants get what they need but become defaulters and create crisis not only for themselves but also for their family members.

The biggest trouble is experienced by SBA loan defaulter. A loan defaulter is someone who has borrowed money from either a private lender or government institute but is unable to pay it back. You can miss a single payment or several ones. It is the most initial stage that can easily lead to bankruptcy where you can lose all of your money and assets.

Types of Loan Defaulters:

People think that there the term is for only one type then they are mistaken. There are basically four types of loan defaulters that are either not willing or incapable of paying the amount borrowed by the lender.

Debit Service Defaulter:

He is a person who is the most common type of loan defaulter. He/ she are a typical individual who has the tendency to miss a loan repayment schedule. Although, one time fail to refund the loan is not considered s the defaulter will pay it. But if non-payee is consistent and unfit to pay for several months only then it will be considered default in the right sense.

Sovereign Defaulter:

When countries that have taken loans from various organizations all around the world. But the terms and conditions are a lot different from a normal default. If a country fails to repay the loan amount within the time frame given to them then no legal action is taken and the regulations are bargained.

Technical Defaulter:

The person who doesn’t meet the requirements of a loan is known as a technical defaulter. He/ she are technically unfit to apply for the loan. Do people often have a question as to why there are many terms and condition to a loan application? The answer to this is that it is a type of security that the business and the lender must have because they are risking their money.

Strategic Defaulter:

If the defaulter intentionally misses a loan payment whereas, he/ she have the capability to repay it then they are known as strategic defaulters. They have with careful planning avoided to give back the loan amount.  This situation happens very often as borrowers may do fraud and leave everything as it is.

Avoiding SBA Loans Default:

No one feels good if you are far behind on your payment schedules and especially if you have to repay the loan amount. Various guidelines are being given by different organizations that are helping both lenders and borrowers. Orumfy is one such company that is assisting people on how they can avoid becoming defaulters.

Keep in Touch with the Lenders:

The first thing you can do is keep contacting the lender from time to time. The lender is the only person who is able of providing the correct information regarding the loan progress. You have to trust the lender fully because he is the only one who has the power to change the terms and conditions of the loans.

Pay Minimum as Possible:

Sometimes the lenders demand to repay the loan in full but the borrower is not capable of repaying it as a whole. So what can be done? One solution is that the borrower can pay a minimum amount but only after informing the lender first. As the lender has the right to know everything.

Get help from Lawyer:

No one can guide you better in legal matters more than a lawyer. So it is wise that you hire the help from a professional having all the knowledge and experience required to guide you from the start till the end of the loan application.

Due Date Reminder:

The main reason that people forget to pay their loans amounts and are labeled as defaulters is that they don’t remember the due date. One thing that can be done is to have reminders in all of the electronic devices of a few days prior to the actual date so that recollecting the date is easier.

Have Collateral Ready:

There are several lenders who have a policy to accept property and other valuable items as collateral. An intelligent borrower is the one who is always prepared with a second plan to repay the loan amount, so collateral must be readily available in case of default in payment.

Don’t Exceed your Needs:

Be very sure of what amount you need for the loan because the right amount will determine the terms and conditions that will be between you and the lender. So if you want not to become an SBA loan defaulter then it is essential that you don’t exceed the limit of your capacity.

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Business

How to upscale your growing business this year

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Upscaling a business can be a daunting task, but it is certainly doable, and in spite of all of the challenges, it is perfectly possible to be successful in taking your company to the next level.

Remember that if you have taken some start up finance, you must repay it, and it is up to you to do everything possible in order to ensure that your business makes a profit even in challenging circumstances. Your partners and investors will also require a report on how the business is fairing.

 

Here are some tips on how you can upscale your business and increase your profit levels;

Focus on the main business

It is important to ensure that you do not lose your focus and get distracted. Let others deal with your other business ventures, but, your main business activities must be your primary concern.

As a manager, you shouldn’t be too concerned about who is answering the telephone, but you must always keep your focus on the main business activities such as, how to increase your clientele, how to build your brand, how to ensure your products are selling, and how you can improve on your service delivery.

When you concentrate on the core business values, you are able to clearly see where there are problems and how you can sort them out early enough so that they do not mess up your sales figures and customer satisfaction levels.

Consider outsourcing some of the office duties, and even hiring consultants to give advice and also deal with other tasks so as not to waste time when you could be putting all of your energy into the business venture.

Add expertise into your organisation, and not just anyone

The clue is in the name – what an expert brings on board is expertise. If you want to know how to increase sales, look for a sales expert, if you want to know how to maximize your profits look for a business strategist, if you want to know how to hire the right staff, look for a Human Resources expert.

Do not hire people based on feelings, or emotions, and most especially, do not hire your family members out of a sense of obligation. Ensure that you only look for people who will add value into your organisation.

Consider asking advice from people who have made it, and find out how they went about finding the right people for their company, because at the end of the day, what you want is for your business to grow through maximum profit maximisation.

Create a business structure that promotes growth

Your business is your brainchild, and for most people, it takes blood, sweat, and tears to bring their ideas into fruition. You, therefore, need to ensure that whatever you do is geared towards more growth, more success, and more sales.

However hard it may be to delegate tasks, it is for the good of the company. Ensure you first choose the right people, and then that those people understand not only the company vision but the way in which you see the vision being realised.

You must create a structure that will ensure a company is able to grow and upscale.

Keep your circle of advisors small, and also ensure that they understand the core business values.

 

Marketing

 

They say that marketing is the cornerstone of every organisation. You cannot be successful unless your customers know that you are out there. Come up with a marketing strategy, and decide whether to employ a marketing department or outsource marketing services.

Whichever you choose, ensure they understand the core business values and marketing goals. This will include what you want to achieve, where you want to go as an organisation and how you are going to achieve your goals.

Funding

There is nothing wrong in adding on to your start-up finance. This could be in order to expand your business or to venture into areas you may not have ventured into already. Find good partners and people who can promote you, in order to ensure that you have enough to venture into new and unchartered territories.

Every business venture is a risk, and if you have already risked and started a business previously, you can always risk again by taking on a new venture, or expanding on what you already have. Money lenders are always willing to refinance an already existing business.

Conclusion

Upscaling your business must be your priority. Do not be comfortable at being in the same place year after year. You need to grow and move from one place to another so that you can maximise your profits.

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