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What Business Owners Should Consider when Tackling Financial Challenges

  • October 25th, 2018
  • David Hill

As a business leader, when tackling challenges related to debt or restructuring your first instinct should be to research successful strategies, but the deluge of information available today can be overwhelming.

To cut through the noise of competing voices, we’ve laid out some basic business financial advice that all senior management figures should adhere to, whether they are managing to restructure or seeking growth.

Record everything

The increased collection of data has become a hot topic for business leaders in recent years, and for good reason. Data gives you the power to understand what’s working and what isn’t within your business.

There are expensive resources available but for smaller companies, significant data can be created just by recording as many aspects of your business as possible. Does your contacts list of third-party vendors consist of a pile of business cards in your desk drawer? If so you’re liable to forget key details about your previous transactions. This will cost you if you find yourself in the process of voluntary administration or debt-related refinancing.

Records of all costs, sales, and employees (including contractors) should be readily available and up to date.

Make sure all your data is secure

Once you’re fully engaged in harvesting and utilising data, an essential next step is to make sure it’s secure. Software protection can be bolstered significantly by basic best practice principles which are essentially free, minus the potential training costs for larger organisations.

Because modern cybercrime is so varied and complex, it’s impossible not to come into contact with it in some form or another. This could be anything from receiving phishing emails claiming to be your bank and requesting your details to full-scale data hacking and ransomware attacks. The latest statistics on how prolific and damaging cybercrime can be is truly hair-raising. At the same time, the reputational damage of publically losing customer data can be catastrophic.

Lawmakers around the world are working hard to produce new guidelines and laws on data protection to mitigate modern risks. These requirements also carry heavy penalties for non-compliance. Saying you didn’t know won’t help you.

Get the right insurance

As your business evolves you may be exposing yourself to new risks that are not covered by your current plan. For example, if you turn a full-time position in your store into a casual contract role or bring in an agency worker, does that fall outside your coverage for accidents or damage caused by that person? Keep yourself up-to-date to avoid nasty surprises and unexpected costs.

Resources you can trust, and those you can’t

These days there are so many sources of information of varying reliability that it has become difficult to know which ones to trust.

Your first port of call for anything related to your business, legal or financial requirements should be the authorities themselves, or your financial advisor. The Australian Government’s online resources are easily accessible, presented in a digestible format, and avoid using legalese and jargon. You can also read great industry information in our Research Centre here.

Always consider the following:

  • Who is the author? Blogs are often written by a single person or small group of people and are therefore limited in their scope of expertise compared to a larger company – although that doesn’t stop bloggers straying into other areas in their writing.
  • Can I trust you? Blogs are almost always personal sites that don’t get their content fact-checked or edited by anyone other than the author. This will not be the case with a legal firm’s official online research papers, for example, or with content such as that offered by Australian Debt Solvers.
  • What are your sources? Although a blogger may appear confident in their advice on how to run your business, there are no guarantees they’ve really done the research. If they are an expert in the industry then they are generally a credible source, however check if they are referencing government sites as sources as well.
  • When was this published? Once posted, a blog post will likely remain online forever. If you’re researching a specific topic that is covered you may find yourself on this post even though it’s several years old and woefully out of date, so check if the information is still relevant or not.

Other than going online, financial advice can be gained the old fashioned way, by talking to real people. There have never been more conferences, roundtables, webinars, or debates where interested parties can share information on any number of business topics.

Get informed today

Australian Debt Solvers specialises in solving debt-related issues for businesses. For financial advice specific to your business situation that you can’t find with the above information, contact us through our website today.

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