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Giglia Celebrates 5-Year Franchise Anniversary

August 6, 2020 / by Leslie Jorgensen posted in North Shore Long Island, Bookkeeping Services

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More and more technologically savvy financial professionals are building successful businesses with Supporting Strategies' cutting-edge franchise formula.

Cheri Giglia, Managing Director of Supporting Strategies | North Shore Long Island, has achieved a significant milestone: five years at the helm of a successful outsourced bookkeeping services franchise.

"I can't believe it's been five years," says Giglia, who was the recipient of a Long Island Power Women in Business Award in 2018. "It's gone really fast. I've grown so much not only as a businesswoman, but also as a person."

According to Giglia, who previously held a series of financial executive positions in large corporations and technology startups, this is her first time owning and operating her own business. "To take everything I'd learned in my career and combine it with the Supporting Strategies model and be successful at it has been very rewarding," she says.

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Talent Search: Hiring the Best Bookkeeping and Finance Staff

August 4, 2020 / by Mark Wald posted in Santa Monica, Bookkeeping Services, Los Angeles, Ventura County

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There's much more involved in handling your company's bookkeeping and finance needs than meets the eye. Here's how to find a team of qualified professionals.

We live in a world of specialists. As a business leader, you recognize the importance of hiring people with the knowledge base and experience to fill specific roles in your field. During a building project, for example, a commercial builder might hire an architect, plumber, electrician, roofer, drywall installer, masonry contractor and other support people.

You know what a commercial builder won't do? Hire one person and expect them to do all of those jobs. And yet, when it comes to enlisting various forms of operational support, including bookkeeping and finance staff, that's effectively what many business leaders do.

There's a much better way.

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Is Your Business Ready for the Coming Bookkeeper Shortage?

July 31, 2020 / by Ryan Kane posted in Small Business Advice, Bookkeeping Services, Toledo, OH & Southeast MI

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Learn how you can prepare your business for the projected bookkeeper shortage.

A recent report by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics projects that America could lose almost 66,000 bookkeepers between 2018 and 2028. This trend could spell trouble for small businesses that fail to plan accordingly.

According to Strategic Finance magazine (SF), the decline in bookkeepers is being driven in part by increased automation — as well as a mistaken belief that software programs provide a "set it and forget it" bookkeeping solution that no longer requires human involvement.

In reality, the bookkeeping profession is transitioning to a more analytical role. The job is no longer about accumulating data, but about interpreting what all that data means. "There will still be a strong demand for these professionals," SF concludes. "Nevertheless, the combination of an aging population of current bookkeepers and fewer new entrants into the field will be insufficient to meet the needs of many companies, especially small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs)."

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Case Study: Outsourced Bookkeeping Positions Law Firm to Handle COVID-19

July 28, 2020 / by Leslie Jorgensen posted in Boston, Case Study Blogs, Law Firm

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Supporting Strategies established cloud-based bookkeeping and streamlined back-office operations at this successful law firm — just in time for COVID-19.

Pabian & Russell, LLC, is one of Boston's most respected law firms, with expertise spanning elder law, estate planning, dispute resolution and several other practice areas. Bookkeeping, however, was causing a number of frustrations.

The firm's previous solution — an in-house team responsible for day-to-day accounts payable, accounts receivable and client billing, plus an outside accountant to close the monthly books — and processes weren't working. Attorneys were tracking billable hours on paper forms. An inefficient billing protocol led to delayed payments from clients. The firm couldn't produce reports that could guide strategic decisions.

"We were in the middle of making a lot of plans, but the lack of data was holding us back," CEO Margaret Burke notes. "Eventually we realized it made sense to hire someone and not try to do this in house."

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Updates on PPP Loan Forgiveness, Including Safe Harbors

July 20, 2020 / by Linan Zhang posted in Business Continuity, Southwest Houston, TX

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Are you applying for loan forgiveness on your Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loan? Learn about safe harbor provisions and coverage period restrictions.

Note: Please visit the Small Business Administration's PPP website for the most current details.

As of July 14, American businesses had received more than 4.9 million loans through the PPP. All of those loans — some $518 billion worth — are eligible for forgiveness under certain circumstances. Make sure you understand the requirements.

Payroll and Salary Criteria
Initially, the PPP stipulated that 75% of any loan had to be dedicated to payroll costs. But recent legislation revised that figure to 60%.

That's just one of many adjustments. The government's latest Loan Forgiveness Application revision, which has two application forms and two corresponding instructions, can be confusing. We will try to summarize the changes by focusing on a few key provisions.

Coverage period definitions and restrictions: Businesses that received their PPP loan by June 4 can still choose an eight-week period for their loan. However, just like post-June 4 borrowers, they may also elect to use a 24-week period. Among other things, choosing the 24-week option effectively increases the maximum amount you can pay any individual employee with PPP funds from $15,385 to $46,154 (prorated based on a $100,000 cap on annual salary).

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Reopen for Business: How to Adapt to New Financial Realities

July 16, 2020 / by Elliot Hershik posted in Chicago Far West Suburbs, Business Continuity

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How can your company regain the momentum it lost due to the coronavirus outbreak? Here are bookkeeping strategies for finding your new normal.

If your business is among the many that have just reopened, or plan to shortly, after the COVID-19 shutdown, you might feel like you're starting all over again. And yes, there are some similarities between starting a business and restarting a business. But there are important differences, too. Let's look at how you can prepare for these new realities with bookkeeping best practices.

That No-Revenue Déjà Vu
The most vivid reminder of your startup days is probably the lack of immediate revenue to cover your expenses. There's no question that can be a source of stress, particularly if your business has substantial upfront costs or a significant burn rate.

In addition, depending on the nature of your business and your particular state's reopening guidelines, you might have to budget for additional expenses that you never had to worry about in a pre-pandemic world, such as Plexiglas shields or extra cleaning staff.

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Reminder: $130 Billion in PPP Funding Is Still Available

July 13, 2020 / by Elliot Hershik posted in Chicago Far West Suburbs, Business Continuity

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The federal government has given businesses more time to apply for COVID-19 relief. Are your books up to date?

Money that was allocated but not used during the initial rollout of the Small Business Association's (SBA's) Paycheck Protection Program is still available to small businesses. With Congress authorizing the extension of the deadline to August 8, access to funds totaling $130 billion is still an option if you haven't already applied for the PPP.

Small businesses that take advantage of the program will benefit in more ways than one, because the SBA has worked out some of the issues in the loan-forgiveness procedures. Basically, if businesses can prove they meet the newest guidelines, the loan will be forgiven before any interest is due. Get the PPP loan and forgiveness details here.

Don't Miss Out
For many small businesses, especially those in states that are seeing a surge in COVID-19 cases, this opportunity couldn't have come at a better time. But the word of caution that my colleague Craig Feltner offered in April about not waiting too long to apply for a PPP loan still applies today: "There will be a flood of applications, and banks will likely have difficulty managing them all."

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Proven Value: Online Bookkeeping in the Time of COVID-19

July 7, 2020 / by Diane Denholm posted in Northeast Florida, Bookkeeping Services, Business Continuity

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With cloud-based technology and remote-work best practices, online bookkeeping services will help you strengthen your business as you prepare for the future.

For many businesses that had relied on onsite employees and desktop applications, remote work and cloud-based technology have become the new normal during the pandemic. Now that you've seen what's possible with remote work … what's holding you back from outsourcing your bookkeeping?

With outsourced bookkeeping, you can not only help ensure business continuity, but also gain expertise and financial insight you didn't know you were missing.

Stop By Your Bookkeeper's Desk — Online
You may have appreciated the ability to stop by your bookkeeper's desk to ask a question — back when your bookkeeper actually had a desk. But once the pandemic hit, many businesses had to transition instantly to a remote workforce. Any company that still relied on an in-house bookkeeper, and a desktop system that required them to physically be onsite to get access, was caught unprepared.

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Opening a U.S. Subsidiary Is Still Possible During COVID-19

July 2, 2020 / by Loren Sweigart posted in Santa Monica, Bookkeeping Services, Los Angeles, Ventura County, Business Continuity

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Although COVID-19 has created obstacles for overseas companies to set up U.S. subsidiaries, it has also presented possible opportunities to pursue.

The coronavirus pandemic has had a catastrophic impact on the world's economy, with some sources forecasting a decline of up to 8.8% in global GDP this year. In addition, ongoing travel restrictions prevent entry to the United States from many countries, which may have disrupted plans at some international companies to open subsidiaries here. (As a general rule, opening a U.S. subsidiary requires obtaining a U.S. bank account, which must be done in person.)

Even so, there are glimmers of optimism amid the gloom. The pandemic has also revealed new opportunities, especially for companies that specialize in technologies that enable e-commerce, telemedicine and remote learning. For international companies in those fields, the U.S. market could be more receptive than ever. Here's what you'll need to know about starting a U.S. subsidiary.

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Reimagine Your Business for Long-term Success

June 23, 2020 / by Allan Hirsh posted in Chesapeake Region, MD

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Strengthen the core of your business by shifting your focus from how to why. Learn how reimagining your business can position your business for success.

Lately, there have been a lot of blogs about obtaining financial support to help your business survive the COVID-19 crisis. And while such advice can be helpful in the short term, it's like teaching someone how to tread water: It can prevent drowning, but it's not a long-term survival strategy.

I'm more interested in teaching you how to swim.

Focus on Your Why, not Your How
Business owners tend to get bogged down in the details of how they do what they do rather than why they do it. That can be an obstacle to progress even in the best of times. During the coronavirus pandemic, it can be disastrous.

You need to open your mind to a different approach — an "AHA moment," as we call it at Allan Hirsh Advisors. For example, I have a client who operates a retail outlet at a major airport. When the pandemic hit, she was forced to close her store for the time being.

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