Every organisation regardless of its size requires efficient financial management. Finances play a crucial role in the success of a business. For a small business to be sustainable and grow substantially, the owners and shareholders have to pay keen attention to their financial management. Financial management involves the creation, implementation, and control of the tactical and strategic goals directed towards all financial resources. Some of the significant roles in financial management include:
1. Accounting and Bookkeeping
Accounting and bookkeeping processes should measure, compute the data, record and translate relevant financial information of the small business. The central pillar of a sound financial system is accurate bookkeeping. Small companies should invest in having great bookkeeping systems or rather employ someone or use relevant applications to facilitate this. All transactions on a day to day basis should be recorded and well stored for future use and further decision making.
2. Accounts Payables and Accounts Receivables
Accounts payables enable the organisation to have relevant information on appropriate supplier account balances. In addition to this, the small business will be able to determine the outstanding payments, past transactions, and credit balances. The Payable accounts also enable the company to create invoices, have updated records and maintain well and fully integrated documents that represent their financial position.
Accounts receivables are the opposite of account payables, and they form the accounts and records of amounts owed for merchandise or services acquired without payment. It enables tracking of invoices, payments and allows calculation of outstanding costs. The calculation of the credits is crucial as it provides timely reminders that prevent pending payments from becoming bad debts. Consulting Business Advice Specialists Group Pty Ltd for managing finances accounts is crucial and therefore businesses must seek professional help.
3. Risk Management
Every small business must evaluate risk. Every financial management processes should be strategically curated to minimise risk and counter unexpected liabilities. There should be sufficient insurance for the business assets and key employees.
Quarterly managing budgets and well defined annual working capital to avoid financial risks from arising. Having significant financial systems also increase the business’s flexibility and prevent cash flow problems that may occur from creditors.
Importance of Financial Information Systems
World Bank defines the Financial Information Systems as automated systems that control financial operations with minimal human contact. Automation achieved by using financial applications and sufficient database management systems which are readily available today.
Financial Management Systems reduce the need to keep records and transactions on physical documents. The benefits of going paperless are immense, not only do they ensure data is safe but enables easy accessibility through various systems. Incorporating these systems into your small business is essential, below are more reasons why:
Quick Decisions – Financial management systems allow fast decision making as the data and information are readily available at any time. They create advance reports and financial data analysis that facilitates quick managerial decision making. These systems reduce uncertainties that may arise from inadequate records.
Planning– Get to schedule and forecast accurately from the data and information acquired from financial systems. Get to allocate resources appropriately to each department according to their needs. Planning is crucial for any business as it forms the layout to achieving success and meeting set financial goals.
Efficiency– Small businesses can achieve more efficiency within their financial operations and procedures by using financial management systems. The financial manager or small business owner can eliminate misuse of resources and lower the risks that may arise from inadequate control of finances. Historical data from the financial management systems can be used to evaluate the progress of the small business more efficiently.
Integration– Financial Management Systems create a platform that enables integration of all functions of every department regarding finances. It speeds up the processing of business transactions and conveys information almost instantly. System integration allows centralisation of operations which may minimise costs and time wastage.
Competition– Use of Financial Management systems increases the competitive advantage of small businesses. Use of technology in advancing customer growth and satisfaction rate is significantly efficient. Financial Management Systems will enable the small business to respond to environmental changes within the market and remain a step ahead of the competitors.
How to Choose the Right Financial Information System
After glancing the importance and functions of the Financial Information System one should know how does a small business determine which financial management system is the most suitable? Below is a list of factors to consider when deciding to integrate financial systems into your business:
Ease of Use
This financial software relays a straightforward dashboard that displays the financial status of your company. It should be easy to use and have clear instructions. There is no need to waste time in customising invoices or try to acquire data from the system only to be caught off guard by a due bill. The software should be simple enough to facilitate quick maneuvering that promotes the fast performance of essential tasks.
Integrates well with your other tools
Businesses use an array of different tools for different needs to keep operations running smoothly. As a small business, the number of devices may not be too many but as you grow the number may significantly increase. Choose financial systems that will be able to integrate all your other applications even in the future.
Connects to the business bank account
Other than the ability to track all transactions and generate relevant reports, an additional feature that may come in handy is the strength of the software to connect to the bank. A while back this was impossible, but today with cloud-based applications, one no longer has to enter any bank transactions in the software manually. The process of connecting automatically to your bank saves time and reduces the possibility of human errors once everything gets connect automatically.
Protecting data is quite simple, only choose software that has security systems in place. Financial information is very crucial to small businesses, landing in the wrong hands especially competitors will give them a competitive advantage.
The first thing to look out for before choosing software is the SSL (this refers to Secure Socket Layer encryption), any multi-layered server protection systems and frequent audits and inspections
Choose software that offers additional customer support in the form of video tutorials, webinars and chats support. Answers to queries may not be readily available online, or within online communities, so it is quite remarkable to choose software that accommodates appropriate customer support strategies.