As a small business owner, you’re probably keeping a close eye on every cent you spend. You need to have a good eye on your income and expenses to manage your cashflow, so that’s a good thing. However, it might mean that you are wasting time micro-managing your finances and not hiring people to help give your business a boost. Hiring a bookkeeper can be a great investment fro any small business.

What Does a Bookkeeper Do?

A Certified Bookkeeper will take care of your daily business financial management. They’ll make sure your books are up to date, balanced and reliable so they can support the best possible decision making. They’ll manage your invoicing (accounts receivable), track your receipts and general expenditure and reconcile your accounts payable.

All of the frustrating daily and weekly financial tasks that you hate or that just sucks up half your day, they love doing. Not only do they love that work, they are likely a lot faster and more efficient at doing it than you are.

Hiring a Bookkeeper Saves You Time

Unless you’re a bookkeeping whizz and love those debits and credits, you might find your bookkeeping to be a headache-inducing waste of time. Chances are, you’ll put off your bookkeeping until its a massive chore. This means it takes up more time and you like it even less. Even if you do enjoy it, doing this day-to-day book work is dragging you away from the parts of your business where you should be focusing your energy and passion. Your time is valuable. You’re much better investing your time in value-adding activities like sales, networking and marketing your business.

The time you spend trying to understand your financials could be better spent on tasks you’re good at. A Certified Bookkeeper will be more efficient than you, they won’t spend all day reconciling bank accounts and attaching invoices and receipts. They’ll have it done in minutes. They won’t have as many errors and overall, they will save you a mountain of stress.

Your time, and your sanity, are worth investing in a Certified Bookkeeper.

A Bookkeeper is on Top of Your Cashflow

Hiring a bookkeeper means that you’ll always have someone with an eye on your cashflow.

They’ll help you get paid. Many small business owners have a hundred things to get on and do. It’s easy for things like invoicing and accounts receivable t fall down the list. It is essential to your business survival that you send out invoices as soon as possible. It is equally as important to follow up with late payers to see what’s going on. These are harassing calls, just a friendly, personal reminder that the invoice is outstanding and due for payment. You might feel bad doing this, which is why its the perfect task for your friendly, professional bookkeeper.

Your bookkeeper will also ensure that you don’t end up getting any of those calls from your creditors. They’ll ensure that your bills are paid on time.

Id there any better investment in your business than one that makes sure you’ve always got cash flowing and money in the bank?

Hiring a Bookkeeper Prevents Costly Errors

A Certified Bookkeeper knows their stuff. They are committed to professional excellence and undergo ongoing professional development to make them experts in their field. They won’t make the same mistakes that you’ll make, either because you’re rushed or because you haven’t got around to reading the latest 53 page IRD tax bulletin.

Some mistakes might seem small and insignificant at first. However, data entry errors, mixing up expenses and mis-claiming GST, can all quickly add up. These mistakes cost you more time and more money.

If you are doing your bookkeeping and then relying on your accountant to clean things up a year-end, you’re burning money. What you are doing is then getting your accountant to be your bookkeeper, at accountant’s hourly rates! It also takes a lot longer to unpick and re-reconcile transactions that happened months or even years ago.

At the worst end of the scale, consistent mistakes, even little ones, could flag you for an IRD audit. An audit can cost thousands to resolve, and that’s even if things are nice and tidy!

It’s best, and cheapest, to get it right from day one. Get in an expert to keep your books in order.

Certified Bookkeepers are Experts

Are you up to date on every movement in tax law? Do you understand how small changes to the rules effect your business? A Certified Bookkeeper is. They can advise you about any changes that are coming that may impact on your business and can offer insight into how to prepare and minimise any impact or maximise any benefit.

Hiring a bookkeeper can also provide you with insight into your company’s financial position. If you’re short on cash, overspending in certain areas or struggling to collect accounts receivable, your bookkeeper will tell you. They can also work with you to help remedy these issues. If there is something you don’t understand about your business finances, your bookkeeper can help to explain it to you. Because they are slightly more human than accountants, they can even explain it all in plain English, not accountantese. So your business financials will never be a mystery again.

Hiring a Bookkeeper is an Investment in Your Business

With a Certified Bookkeeper on board, you can sleep easy knowing your business books are in the hands of a professional.

Not all bookkeepers are created equal. At MBP, all of our bookkeepers are trained professionals and are Certified Bookkeepers with the Institute of Certified New Zealand Bookkeepers (ICNZB). The ICNZB ensure that they are professionally competent and that they uphold the highest standards of continuing professional development and ethics. And the best part, our Ceritfied Bookkeepers are about half the cost of an accountant, so you get exceptional value from your investment.

Want some help with your bookkeeping? Get in touch with the team of Certified Bookkeepers at MBP, or book in a chat with us today.

Employees at businesses both large and small are now telecommuting/ working from home. Many companies around the world are restructuring their management practices to meet the challenges and opportunities of managing remote teams.

Now with the spread of the COVID-19 and workers being asked to work-from-home the need for managing remote teams is higher than it’s ever been.

Because they tend to be more agile and open to change, small businesses are particularly well positioned to adapt to telecommuting. Increased productivity and happier employees who appreciate the added flexibility are just a few benefits winning over small business owners.

But telecommuting also presents some challenges – in particular, two core issues: keeping track of what remote workers are doing and ensuring that remote and in-house teams form a cohesive unit.

These tips can help you effectively manage and support your remote employees and ensue the ongoing success of a remote business.

Promote Communication and Accountability when Managing Remote Teams

Defining expectations and setting up methods to track results are essential elements of remote team management. Here are a few ways to make sure your remote workers understand what is expected of them:

  • Set up a shareable daily work log your remote workers can use to report their progress on ongoing projects (Google Drive offers some good options).
  • Utilize a project management system to exchange messages, assign tasks and monitor projects rather than relying solely on email.
  • Determine key indicators for success for each remote worker and share these indicators with your employees (these might be daily, weekly or monthly goals).
  • Conduct regular reviews with remote workers to assess their performance.

Include Remote Workers in Office Culture

Positive work culture and employee engagement are quickly becoming top priorities for business managers who want to retain top talent. These tips will help your remote workers feel just as valued and validated as your in-house team.

  • If your in-house workers enjoy a monthly pizza party, don’t forget to include your remote workers. Invite them to attend, have a meal delivered to them or offer a gift certificate to a favorite restaurant.
  • Get to know and spend time with your remote workers, just as you would with in-house staff. Set aside a few moments each day to inquire about their families, personal interests, recent challenges and successes.
  • Consider pairing up remote workers to complete complex tasks. You’ll improve efficiency while helping remote workers feel like part of the team.

Ready to Enjoy the Benefits of Managing Remote Teams?

If the benefits of  managing remote teams outweighs the risks in your view, try offering your staff a work day from home a week – then, if it works out, you can try hiring remote employees. Some small business owners hire a remote employee in another region – a great way to expand their market.

If you trust your employees to work hard no matter where they’re located, the main thing to remember is fostering teamwork. A monthly meeting that everyone is required to attend can encourage stronger relationships, allow opportunities to clear the air or discuss any challenges – and improve a sense of teamwork and camaraderie.

Got a question about your business? Get in touch with the team at MBP. We can help you develop a remote working tech stack, implement HR policies for remote working and health & safety as well as work with you on your business culture and performance.

With the government announcement of the change to Level 3 and moving to Level 4 Lockdown in the next 24 hours, we understand that this will have a dramatic impact on our client’s and their businesses.

We fully understand the likely impact, and we are working as quickly as possible to be able to fully support our clients through this time.  But as you will appreciate, we are getting information at the same time as you are, so we don’t always have the answers or reassurance that you are looking for immediately.  Please bear with us and rest assured, we are doing everything that we can to be here to support you.

The level of client calls though does mean our response times getting back to you may be a bit longer.  We appreciate your understanding regarding this.

In the short term, our response will be to contact every client regarding the Business Wage and Leave Subsidies that the Government has announced.

If you don’t have Cloud Payroll Software and think that you may need our assistance to make applications, please email your MBP Business Partner as soon as possible a report showing your staff names, IRD numbers, and Dates of Birth.  We will need this information to make Wage and Leave Subsidy applications on your behalf. You will need to email this to us before the level 4 restrictions start tomorrow night. Our admin team will no longer be supporting your MBP Business Advisor directly after 5pm tomorrow (24th March 2020).

If you have couriered something to our Taupo office, we have made arrangements with the courier companies to have these redirected.

Once the subsidy applications have been launched, we will start to assist clients to assess the likely impact on their cashflows and talking to their bank.

The third wave of our support will be to assist with planning to try and minimise the longer-term impact of this. This is really the perfect time to start working on your business while its impossible to work normally in it.

Please contact your MBP Business Partner at any stage through the next four weeks.  We are all working from home and are here to support you as best we can in this difficult time.

The MBP​ Family wishes you and your family all the best through these difficult times, stay safe and healthy.

We all have tasks that get in the way of our business moving forward. It’s all these tasks that we tend to procrastinate, that we would rather void doing and that just suck up too much of our valuable time. Time that we should be spending on our businesses. Thankfully, there are lots of businesses, like MBP, that exist to help you identify what to outsource and take over completing those tasks for you. Get back to what you do best, what you enjoy doing and outsource the rest.

When looking to identify what to outsource in your business, we have a few simple questions you should ask yourself. What are the things you hate doing? What are the things you can’t do or struggle to do yourself? What are the things that you just shouldn’t be doing?

What Are The Things You Hate Doing?

It seems like common sense the the stuff you hate shot be what to outsource, right? You’d be surprised how many business owners don’t realise that there are people who love doing the things you hate. For example, that weekly payroll, bookkeeping and copywriting are all ideal things for you to outsource. These are the things you either push aside or neglect as you simply don’t have the passion to do them. The things you stress about but that aren’t really worth the stress. These things are the things you hate that are perfect for you to outsource.

What Things Can’t You Do Yourself?

None of us know it all. As much as us small business owners like to wear all the hats in our businesses and do everything, there are a lot of things that we simply don’t know how to do. There is absolutely nothing wrong with not knowing everything.

“Knowledge is everything you have learnt. Wisdom is knowing what you don’t know.”

It would be nice to know everything. It certainly helps to have a working knowledge of absolutely everything that goes on in your business. However, there simply is not enough time for you to be an expert in everything from payroll and bookkeeping to marketing and SEO. In order to run your business properly, you need to focus on what you know and do best. The rest is what to outsource.

Outsource the tasks you aren’t completely confident on to an expert. You can rest assured they will be done properly and in a much quicker time-frame than you could do. You can then sleep easy having avoided the stress of worrying about doing the task correctly and invest more time into the things you do best, further developing the expertise that makes your business thrive.

Are There Any One-Off Tasks You Need Done?

Every now and then, a job pops up that we don’t necessarily have time for. The job isn’t large enough or ongoing so there isn’t an option to hire an employee to complete the job. Even if it is a job that may take a few months, the added costs and delays of on-boarding anew employee can make the job unprofitable or considerably reduce it value to your business.

It could be something as simple as a few hours of data entry or something as complex as a transition to a new database or the implementation of a new software system. These are the perfect things to outsource. Especially with implementation of new systems as the experts you use can manage the change management process, implement the system and train you and your staff on everything you need to know. Outsourcing also allows you and your team to keep going with business as usual while the one-off tasks are completed. It’s a no-brainer really.

What Are The Things You Just Shouldn’t Be Doing?

Whether you are just starting out in business or you’ve been running a successful business for many years, the business landscape is constantly evolving and you need to be able to keep up. So focus on keeping up. As a business owner you need to be focused on your business and its growth. Everything that distracts you from that focus is something that should be outsourced.

These tasks aren’t necessarily business tasks. What to outsource can also include your cleaning, grocery shopping and anything else that sucks up your valuable time and distracts your from your business.

If you’re not sure where to begin, book in a free chat with an MBP Business Support Advisor. They are experts at assessing what tasks you can outsource to others. At MBP, we are expert Certified Bookkeepers, Accountants and Business Development Advisors but there is a lot of stuff that we don’t do. We outsource to experts ourselves and can put you in touch with our most trusted experts for whatever it is you are looking to outsource.

Want to reduce some of your business admin burden but not sure where to start? Here is our list of the Top 10 things we think you can outsource to get started.

1. Outsource Your Payroll

Nothing makes your staff angrier than not being paid properly. Payroll is a lot more complex than just paying your staff their hourly rates or salaries. The Holidays Act is the bane of many businesses, large and small. Its a part of your business that needs good systems and great, highly skilled people so that your business can avoid the bad publicity and expense that comes with screwing it up.

A Certified Bookkeeper or member of the Payroll Practitioners Association are your best options when looking for an expert to help you get your payroll sorted.

2. Outsource Your GST Returns

GST Return processing is a regular and time consuming process. It is also a very easy thing to outsource if you are new to outsourcing. Get in touch with a Certified Bookkeeper and use their expertise to help ease the burden of regular GST compliance.

It is important to use a Certified Bookkeeper or Tax Agent to ensure you don’t create more headaches for yourself in future.

3. Outsource Your Accounts Receivable Management

Cash is king. From drafting quotes to reconciling payment, your accounts receivable process is the core of your business cashflow and will make or break your business. If you don’t have an accounts receivable process, you really need one. Outsourcing the process to an expert can be a great way to get an effective process in place.

Outsourcing your accounts receivable management can help to streamline the process and make sure you keep on top of your debtors. Working with a bookkeeper on your accounts receivable process will help you with:

  • Drafting quotes to potential customers,
  • Managing deposits for jobs,
  • Raising interim and final invoices,
  • Managing debtors and chasing late payments.

Outsourced to a professional, a proper accounts receivable process will help you to keep the cash rolling in while you focus on serving your customers and doing the things you love.

4. Outsource Your Accounts Payable Management

Keeping on top of all of your accounts payable can be a bit of a mission. You don’t want the accounts departments of your suppliers to be getting in touch with you all the time, its just not good business.

Most business owners seem to fall into one of two categories with their payables. You either avoid them and pay them in big batches once a month, or you pay them as soon as they come in. Neither option is desirable and both are bad for cashflow in different ways.

The best approach with your payables is to simply pay them when they are due. You expect your invoices to be paid on your terms. You should pay your suppliers bills on their terms.

Follow a simple process:

  • Review each bill you receive for accuracy and payment terms.
  • Record the bills as you review them into your accounting system.
  • Plan payment dates and set up batches in advance.
  • Set a certain day each week to process batch payments.
  • Send a remittance after making payment.
  • Allocate and reconcile payments in a timely manner.

5. Outsource Your Software Implementation

Software is a great tool to improve your business efficiency. However, for the automation that software offers to have the best benefit, it has to be implemented properly. Unless you’re an IT and implementation expert, it may be best to get someone in to help walk you through the process and make sure it goes off without a hitch.

There are a number of tech savvy professionals that you can use to help you select and implement software solutions. Selecting the right solutions is the first important step. Implementing properly is the make-or-break step. The overall change management process will also be able to overseen by the implementation team. Effective change management can help to avoid issues with your team having to learn new systems and processes.

Implementation experts are also going to be able to train you and your team on the software your are putting in place. Their end to end solutions will help to make what can be a nightmare into a smooth process that boosts your bottom line.

6. Outsource Your Email Management

More and more communication is happening electronically. Getting some help with your emails can help to free up a lot of your day.

A virtual assistant can help to manage your emails, delete spam and filter out the most important communications that require your attention. This means that when you jump into your emails, you’ll only have to deal with the most important communications form customers and suppliers.

7. Outsource Your Marketing Management

Marketing is the life blood of your business. Even successful and established businesses need to undertake at least some marketing to maintain their market position. If you are looking to grow, marketing is even more important.

The marketing activities you can outsource vary from your graphic design through to your Google Adwords management and everything in between.

Get in touch with a few suppliers of these services. It’s important that you find someone who thoroughly understands your business so that they can easily and seamlessly communicate with your target market and have the greatest benefit to you.

8. Outsource Your Social Media Management

Social media is a total time-suck. An hour can disappear in the blink of an eye. This is what makes it a really good task to outsource to a professional.

Getting a professional to handle your social media can help you to avoid the time-suck. You’ll be able to keep up regular posting, engage with your customers and deal with everyone in a personal manner, all while focusing fully on your business.

9. Outsource Your Copywriting

Getting a professional to handle your copywriting can be a real benefit. From SEO to blogs and proofreading, a professional copywriter can have a number of benefits to your business. They will also free up a lot of time for you to focus on value adding activities in your business.

We recommend you get in touch with the team at Spotty Lizard to have a chat about your copywriting needs.

10. Outsource Your Cleaning

Cleaning is one of the main things we recommend business owners outsource. Its a great way to relieve a weight off your shoulders by getting rid of a task you probably hate. Its an outsourced activity that has a great benefit to you personally and professionally as its something that wastes a lot of time and energy and is something that almost no one enjoys doing. The added benefit is that office cleaning is fully deductible for tax purposes while getting your home cleaned can be a part of your use of home claim if you work from home.

It doesn’t have to be business related tasks that you outsource. Anything that helps to make your life easier will free you up to focus on your business and the things you actually enjoy doing.

If you are keen to discuss the things you could outsource in your business or life, have a chat with an MBP Business Support Advisor.