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Bookkeeping Services


How Builders Can Use Online Tools to Make More Money

August 20, 2019 / by John Gleason posted in Metrowest, MA, North Shore, Bookkeeping Services, West Houston, Central MA

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Builders can now combine building management software with bookkeeping software to review real-time costs and monitor cash flow — right from the field.

Custom software applications have enabled many different types of businesses to operate more efficiently than ever before. New specialized cloud-based software tools, developed across broad sectors ranging from nonprofits to healthcare to information technology and professional services, are now essential tools required to enable entrepreneurs in their respective fields to compete and succeed in their markets.

Perhaps no industry could benefit more from this revolution in software than the building trades. Here's a look at how contractors can use these tools to be more successful.

Building a Better Toolbox
Even under the best of circumstances, the building trades are difficult to manage. It's the nature of the business. Buildings are big-ticket items that promise large potential profits, but only after the builder or developer lays out substantial cash upfront and waits patiently — years, in some cases — for the final big payday. Since most builders juggle multiple projects at the same time, while spending a lot of time in the field, keeping tabs on the company's expenses and cash flow is difficult, yet critical.

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Case Study: A Mainstay During a Period of Impressive Growth

August 15, 2019 / by Lori Kunkel posted in Southern New Hampshire, Bookkeeping Services, Case Study Blogs

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In 2006, Extension Engine was a $1.2 million business offering outsourced software development services. Fast-forward to 2019, and the company now focuses on creating custom online learning experiences and is projecting $15 million in revenue for the year.

Supporting Strategies has been there every step of the way, serving as the bookkeeping arm for Extension Engine's U.S. operations. We handle everything from data entry to financial analysis, providing accurate, up-to-date financials to guide leadership's strategic decisions.

Furqan Nazeeri, Partner at Extension Engine, explains that the business has undergone major changes in its bookkeeping over the past 13 years. "We've switched to new systems for time tracking and for expense tracking, and we've moved from QuickBooks Desktop to QuickBooks Online," he says. "Throughout those and other transitions, Supporting Strategies has been great. They've always been flexible and always managed to figure things out."

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Financial Insight for Business Loans

August 6, 2019 / by Al Regdos posted in Small Business Advice, Bookkeeping Services, Charlotte, NC

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How much of a loan can your business really afford? Learn more about how lenders will determine your loan amount so you can evaluate your loan options.

Your Financial Picture
To understand where your company is financially, looking solely at the income statement can be misleading. Reviewing the balance sheet, statement of cash flows and understanding a company’s on-going capital requirements is crucial, and depending on the nature of your business and how you do your financial analysis, can be surprisingly difficult to nail down.

A good first step, for both your business and a prospective lender, is to be sure you have all the necessary documentation to obtain a loan. If nothing else, keeping a current balance sheet, P&L, etc., will give you an idea of where you stand financially at any given moment. (If you bring your financials up to date with the help of a bookkeeping services company, you might even find to your surprise that you don't even need a loan.)

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Case Study: A Game Plan for Managing Irregular Cash Flow

July 23, 2019 / by Jane Lvovskiy posted in Small Business Advice, Bookkeeping Services, Brooklyn - Staten Island, Case Study Blogs

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File this under "Good Problem to Have." SASKIA, a Brooklyn jewelry startup, grew so fast that its bookkeeping demands soon exceeded the capabilities of its husband-and-wife co-founders.

Of particular concern was the company's irregular cash flow. At the start of each year, SASKIA had a lot of upfront expenditures for the materials needed to create their unique designs. The company relied on no-APR credit cards for purchases of up to $50,000, knowing the return on that investment wouldn't come until much later in the year. But in the meantime, they still had to meet their regular expenses, including payroll for eight employees. The math on how to accomplish that could get a bit fuzzy.

Into the Right Boxes
As is often the case, the first step in solving this problem was to acknowledge it. Partner/COO Scott Kerns, who had been doing the company's books, realized it was time to outsource that responsibility to a specialist. "We needed someone who could put things in the right boxes in the right way," he says, "Then we could look at all of the data together and make informed decisions based on where the money was flowing."

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3 Key Questions to Ask When Choosing a Bookkeeper

July 18, 2019 / by Indre Bauza posted in Small Business Advice, Northern Virginia, Bookkeeping Services, Business Advice

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Note: This blog first appeared in the Arlington Chamber of Commerce Blog.

Small-business owners sometimes have trouble delegating responsibilities. We get it. Once you've invested so much time (and money, in many cases) in launching a business, it's difficult to relinquish control over key aspects of that business — especially the finances.

But as your business grows, you eventually realize there literally aren't enough hours in the day to do everything yourself. And unless your goal in launching the business was to become a full-time bookkeeper, that's one of the first areas you should consider outsourcing. Have questions regarding how to go about it? Here are some answers.

1. Will the bookkeeping services provider help you focus on your business rather than on bookkeeping?
The best bookkeeping services providers understand their role is to minimize your involvement in bookkeeping so that you can refocus on your core strengths. And they'll assert their expertise in accomplishing that — sometimes from day one.

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Improve Franchise Efficiency With Bookkeeping

July 9, 2019 / by John Gleason posted in Metrowest, MA, North Shore, Bookkeeping Services, Business Advice, West Houston, Central MA

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According to a 2016 government report, a new franchised business opens somewhere in the United States every eight minutes of every business day. Franchises are highly popular because they offer many advantages for both the franchisee and franchisor.

Standardized bookkeeping procedures, which enable everyone involved to compare apples to apples, are one of the simplest ways to fully leverage those advantages.

Look at Both Sides of the Ledger
Both entrepreneurs and franchisors have a lot to gain from the franchise business model. For an entrepreneur who wants to become a franchisee, it's a great way to jumpstart a new business. The list of benefits includes:

  • Instant brand-name recognition, which helps secure both bank loans and customers
  • Access to a proven business model, which helps the franchisee avoid costly rookie mistakes
  • Economies of scale that come with buying supplies in bulk quantities
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Opening a US Subsidiary: Next Steps

July 5, 2019 / by Pete Denholm posted in Northeast Florida, Bookkeeping Services, Business Advice

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The response to our post on setting up a U.S. subsidiary of a foreign company demonstrates there is great interest in this topic. Here is some additional information.

Determine Your Expectations
For a foreign entity, the thought of entering the huge U.S. market can be very enticing. But pursuing that market can also create a financial hardship if not done correctly. That's why, as we covered last time, you'll have to follow a specific set of parameters, including (in most cases) choosing a subsidiary over a branch office and setting up an LLC.

The most important step in setting up a U.S. subsidiary is to determine exactly what you hope to accomplish. Consider questions like these:

  • If you're selling a product, have you done the research to determine who your established U.S. competitors are?
  • Does your product meet U.S. safety standards?
  • Can you simply export your product to the United States from your existing manufacturing facility, or do exorbitant tariffs make it more cost-effective to build a manufacturing facility domestically?
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How to Gain Financial Insight From Your Bookkeeper

June 25, 2019 / by Ida Abedon posted in South Florida, Bookkeeping Services, Business Advice

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As a business leader, you're laser-focused on doing everything you can to improve your company. You explore every possible lead. You network with influencers. You read everything from bestselling business books to the most obscure industry-related websites.

But there's one area of your business that you might not realize is worthy of a deeper dive. And yet, it's an area that can yield some of the quickest and most tangible improvements: bookkeeping. Here's a brief guide to how you can gain financial insight from your bookkeeping services provider — insight that can drive your most important decisions.

By Determining If (and When) You're Ready to Grow
Most anyone running a business has considered expanding at some point, whether by hiring another employee or two, moving to a bigger office or opening a second location. As a business leader, you want to think through each potential move. Will a new employee help generate enough revenue to cover their salary? Will moving to a new office create too big a disruption? Would a second location spread time and resources too thin?

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Crossing State Lines: What Small Businesses Need to Know

June 20, 2019 / by Gianluca Santinelli posted in Small Business Advice, Bookkeeping Services, Business Advice, Ecommerce, Wilmington, DE

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The phrase "interstate commerce" used to have a fairly straightforward meaning: transporting goods or services from one state to another. But the advent of ecommerce has blurred those traditional state boundaries. If you are based in one state but are doing business, or intend to do business, in other states — even if only via the internet — how do you stay in compliance with all applicable regulations?

The answer depends on the precise nature of your business as well as individual state laws. Here's an example.

Let's Cover the Easy Stuff First
Let's say you live in Delaware and decide to open a seafood restaurant near the Pennsylvania border. You might not even realize this, but you're already off to a good start because Delaware has such a good reputation as a business-friendly state that more than 1 million businesses have made it their legal home.

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How You Can Use Bookkeeping to Prepare for Business Growth

June 11, 2019 / by Steve Barber posted in Small Business Advice, Bookkeeping Services, Business Advice, Northwest Maryland

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You've launched a small tech startup that makes an app for digital widgets. Business seems to be going well, but you can't tell for sure because the office manager who also does the books is always running behind and you don't know where your cash flow stands.

Finally, when your CPA prepares your taxes and straightens out some bookkeeping errors (running up a big bill in the process), you get confirmation: Business for the first year ran 50% ahead of what you'd anticipated.

That tells you two things. First, you should hire another sales rep and ramp up production. Second, you'd better get your bookkeeping squared away, and fast.

A Valuable Asset to Your Business
A strong bookkeeping practice can help you keep pace with your business today and better prepare to grow your business tomorrow. Here's how:

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