Top 10 Trends of 2019 and Beyond for Growing Businesses
Make your business more profitable, staff more productive and future proof your business.
1. Automation and its machine driven algorithms remain at the forefront of any developing business in 2019. Smart software and systems are replacing repetitive processes, such as traditional methods of bookkeeping. Be open to automation as a means of improving workflows and becoming more efficient. Anything from invoicing to processing payroll and bank reconciliation and expense categorizing are targets for automation, allowing businesses to handle these duties more efficiently and accurately.
Automation brings multiple benefits including cost, a reduction in human error and time saving. This makes more time available for customer interactions, innovation and creative thinking, all of which can enhance productivity and profitability.
Set up and automate the collection of payments and reconciliation of invoices using either GoCardless or iZettle. Save valuable time and money.
2 Embrace the cloud. Cloud computing and storage promotes mobility, and ensures remote work is easily managed. It will allow teams to work anywhere at any time, enabling a business to run virtual workforces without large fixed premises.
Cloud accounting provides a clear overview of your business by creating sales invoices, managing expenses and creating links to your bank accounts to give a clear real-time overview of your financial position. Cloud accounting is not just essential for future compliance changes, but an invaluable way of maintaining business records to ensure that finances are managed efficiently and effectively.
Many of today’s leading cloud solutions offer enhanced security, quality control and data recovery options that may otherwise be inaccessible. Additionally, the cost savings is notable, especially when compared to adding, managing or maintaining internal servers with the same level of accessibility.
We at FUSE are experienced and trained in providing support for the main cloud accounting software providers, QuickBooks and Xero. We can assist with problems you encounter by sharing data on a real-time basis and can advise on building your business in the cloud.
3 Making Tax Digital. HMRC’s flagship project is being rolled out from 1 April 2019. Businesses with annual taxable turnover over the VAT threshold of £85,000 (with some exceptions) will be required to keep electronic records and submit their VAT returns digitally. VAT registered businesses must enrol for MTD, alternatively this can be done by an agent. For cloud accounting users aside from the initial set up, little will ultimately change. However, businesses keeping their records on spreadsheets will need to use complex bridging software or upgrade to cloud accounting.
If FUSE prepare your VAT returns then we will ensure that your business is MTD compliant.
4 Social media for selling. In this digital age you can’t afford to overlook the importance of a user friendly interactive website, Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn pages. In a competitive market, glowing online reviews let your business speak for itself. Would you use a business without ‘Googling’ it first? Testimonials and reviews are an essential part of the sales process.
5 Cybersecurity. Small businesses are more vulnerable when it comes to cybercrime and it is important to avoid security breaches, particularly following the introduction of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). With cloud solutions at our fingertips, this is a crucial area to pay attention to, but with careful planning you can stay protected.
6 Outsourcing. Don’t underestimate the importance of outsourcing to cut costs and improve in-house efficiency. With virtual working and cloud efficiencies, this is becoming more and more popular and preferable for many businesses.
7 Mobile accounting and Apps. Innovative apps can be used to manage your business on the go. They are important adjuncts to core bookkeeping tools. They play an essential role in capturing income and expense details. You can create and send invoices and track those paid and unpaid. A recent business survey revealed that mobile users can save up to nine weeks per year by effectively using mobile devices.
The benefits of mobile Apps includes:
Increase in personal productivity
Improved client services and satisfaction
Increase in billable hours
Improved communications and coordination with colleagues
Enhanced work/life balance.
We at FUSE would be happy to introduce you to 1tap or ReceiptBank. 1tap is a mobile expenses app designed for sole traders. All you have to do is take a photo of a receipt, and the data is automatically extracted and categorised. Alternatively for company’s and larger businesses you can subscribe to ReceiptBank for a small monthly fee. This will enable you to manage and track a company’s expenses in a much more efficient way.
8. Research and Development. R&D tax relief was introduced in 2000. Research and development takes places when a project seeks to achieve an advance in science or technology through the resolution of scientific or technological uncertainty. The definition is broad and can
apply to any industry. Small and medium businesses carrying out eligible R&D costs can claim an enhanced deduction against their profits reducing the corporation tax payable or for loss making companies it could trigger a repayable tax credit. With new technology being at the core of business growth, there is a lot of potential here and thus it is now becoming more and more relevant.
FUSE partners with a specialist R&D claims expert, so if you are unsure if your work qualifies then please seek a second opinion.
9. Incorporation and company formations. The number of companies formed in the UK reached a record high in 2018. A record breaking 669,855 companies were formed. The rate of corporation tax is set to fall over the next few years making this option increasingly attractive for the small growing business.
10. And last but not least THE IMPACT OF BREXIT. Many of the implications of Brexit are unknown, however, VAT is likely to be affected. If the UK exits the EU then UK businesses will have to apply VAT to goods traded with the EU in broadly the same way that already applies for goods traded outside the EU. There would be cashflow implications as a result of this.
FUSE is an independent Chartered Certified firm of accountants and tax advisors based in Highgate Village, North London. We provide a dynamic range of services to clients working in property, media, entertainment and professional services. Our clients vary in size from self employed sole traders, small enterprises and medium size businesses. We believe that comprehensive financial planning and sound business financial advice are the keys to growth and profitability.