Startups? Upstarts? We are glad you are here! As a smart and savvy entrepreneur, you’ve recognized the importance of identifying and partnering with a professional accounting team that you can trust early into the lifecycle of your business. And there are, indeed, some unique characteristics of newbie or green organizations that underscore the need to cultivate strong accounting relationships. With O’Donnell, Ficenec, Wills & Ferdig on your side, we’ll set you up from the get-go to grow in a sustained and healthy manner, not to wither away before your time, or to rot from outdated or stubborn ways of doing things.
You can secure benefits in your day-to-day work and personal life as well as over the longer term. Our services both save time, money and headaches in the near term and also aid in effective and smart planning well into the future. So, your business has a future.
Here are just a few of the areas of expertise that we’ve been able to apply to help so many businesses launch in the most favorable and robust way possible.
Incorporation as tax strategy -- The “default” structure for businesses is the “sole proprietorship”; however, how your operation is structured matters, and deserves more attention than merely “defaulting” or letting this process go on auto-pilot. This fundamental consideration can determine whether your personal assets will be on the line in the event that your business faces financial or legal hardship (read: gets sued). Also, how you register your business is very much interlinked with tax strategy. Your business can be a vehicle to either accelerate or, conversely, to put the brakes on your tax burden, resulting in savings that can then be invested back into your business and its growth.
Accurate and consistent management of what goes “in” – This may seem like a no-brainer. But the systems and processes that you use to manage your sales set the tone for the rest of your business. You want to assure that your customers are being properly invoiced, and that you are receiving full and correct payments in a timely fashion.
Similarly, accurate and consistent tracking of what goes “out” – Naturally, you do not want to be paying any more than was agreed-upon to vendors, suppliers, or any other partners and outside parties. You will not be aware of any monies that are potentially being leaked out if you do not have a good system in place to handle your payments. Likewise, as a business owner, you appreciate the frustration that arises when payments are late or fall short. It’s best to avoid this situation with proper financial management tools and procedures in place.
Increase your odds of obtaining capital, loans – A good handle on your finances is not just pivotal to the day-to-day running of the business, driving profitability and smart investments. It is also critical to achieving the support that is often necessary to keep your business going or to take it to new heights. In fact, analytics firm CB Insights reports that the No. 1 reason “why” startups fail comes down to “running out of cash/failure to raise new capital.” Fortunately, we’ve got you covered on this front! Partly, we provide the sound and trusted information that lenders, VC and angel investors, and financial institutions need to see before making a decision to throw some of their skin into the game, or to approve your loan application.
Maintain loyal vendors – We support your ability to retain the highest-quality suppliers and partners. This ties to bullet point No. 3, and tracking what you pay, when you pay it and to whom. Nothing quite kills a relationship and feeds into a bad reputation among other vendors and the broader community quite like repeat stumbles – errors with payments or late payments. Your vendors will play an important role in your success. So, treat them well!
Foster employee morale – The challenge of acquiring and keeping top talent has long been described as a “war.” There is fierce competition for the best, and we all know it. Now is definitely not the time to have stumbles with your payroll system. Nothing sends a worker looking for greener pastures faster than repeated failures to get checks on time or to get monies deposited into their accounts a timely and accurate fashion.
Continue to embody and live your “brand” – Remember that your brand is influenced by so many different factors, including your relationships with the vendor/supplier/contractor community, and with current and past employees, peers and thought leaders. Recurrent audits or other issues associated with a lack of compliance to regulatory and legal requirements, or related to poor and inaccurate tracking and reporting, can cost you more than $$$$ in the long run (due to the likes of penalties and increased tax burdens from failing to secure eligible deductions and credits). It can also leave an indelible black stain on the brand that you’ve worked so hard to build and nurture.
Business Intelligence – Yes, we know that “BI” is “buzzy.” But what this term really means is the act of using information and data analysis to drive decision-making. Real metrics inform the next steps to move forward. And we’ve been busy using this powerful tool long before it was everyday parlance. This is one of the most valuable aspects of partnering with professional accountants and what separates us from services providers who are limited in their scope to more rote, (yet undeniably important) bookkeeping tasks. As a full-service firm, we of course provide bookkeeping, payroll, and their ilk. But we also have a depth and breadth of extensive expertise in advanced or niche areas, as well as the sophisticated technologies and processes, to keep your date secure, managed, and positioned well for the analysis and deeper dives that are presented with a wealth of historical information in the form of well-tracked and -reported financials. We can even pinpoint inefficient areas of the business. So, you can benefit from our recommendations to gain efficiencies that streamline or help your operations run smoothly. These strategies could be incorporated right away to better your business!
Additionally, when the time comes that your business morphs into something else entirely, or you morph into someone else entirely as part of your professional and personal evolution, our team is there for you! The OFWF team includes seasoned and accredited business valuators and estate professionals. There is peace of mind in knowing that you, your family, your team and your legacy are in exceptional hands. We encourage you to contact us today. What you do today sets the tone for the rest of your business and your future beyond the business.