As we step into 2024, it’s the perfect time for small business owners to set the stage for a prosperous year. Achieving financial success doesn’t happen by chance; it requires careful planning, realistic goal-setting, and a proactive approach to managing your finances. Here’s your guide to setting achievable financial goals and starting the year on the right foot.

Understanding Your Current Financial Position

Before setting new goals, it’s crucial to understand where your business currently stands. This means reviewing your financial statements, understanding your cash flow, and evaluating your debts and assets.

Compare your current financials to previous periods to gauge the impact of your decisions. Don’t hesitate to discuss your finances with a trusted advisor, be it your accountant, business partner, or financial consultant. A fresh perspective can often highlight areas you might overlook.

Planning for Success

Effective planning is crucial for any successful business. Dedicate time to review and adjust your business goals. Make an actionable plan and regularly assess your business’s performance against these goals. Keep your plan visible and use it as a guide during your financial reviews. This will help you stay on track and make necessary adjustments promptly.

Building a Strong Cash Flow

A robust cash flow is the lifeblood of any business. If you haven’t already, a 12-week cash flow projection can be an excellent start. It helps you understand the cash required to operate your business and anticipate any surplus or deficiency. Knowing your future cash position allows you to plan and adjust accordingly, or address potential problems in preparation for the next financial year.

ATO Due Dates for January 2024

As you set your financial goals, it’s essential to keep key dates in mind. The Australian Taxation Office (ATO) has specific due dates in January 2024 that you should be aware of:

  • 21 January

Lodge and pay quarter 2, 2023–24 PAYG instalment activity statement for head companies of consolidated groups.

  • 28 January

Make quarter 2, 2023–24 super guarantee contributions to funds by this date.

Note: Employers who do not pay minimum super contributions for quarter 2 by this date must pay the super guarantee charge and lodge a Superannuation guarantee charge statement by 28 February 2024.

  • 31 January

Lodge TFN report for closely held trusts if any beneficiary quoted their TFN to a trustee in quarter 2, 2023–24.

Actionable Tips for the New Year

  1. Review and Update Your Budget: Ensure your budget reflects your current financial situation and aligns with your goals for 2024.
  2. Set Specific, Measurable Goals: Whether it’s increasing revenue, reducing expenses, or expanding your business, having clear, quantifiable goals is the key!
  3. Invest in Efficient Technology: Utilise digital tools and software to streamline your financial management, like cloud-based accounting solutions such as Xero and Dext.
  4. Plan for Tax Obligations: Stay informed about tax changes and plan accordingly to meet your obligations without stress.
  5. Regular Financial Health Checks: Schedule regular reviews of your financial health to stay on track and make adjustments as needed.

Asking for Help

Remember, it’s okay to ask for help! Not all business owners are financial experts, and seeking advice is a sign of strength, not weakness. If you’re unsure about financial decisions or need guidance, reach out to professional accountants and bookkeepers.

As we face 2024, remember that setting goals is just the beginning. Regularly reviewing and adjusting your strategies is crucial for long-term success. And if you ever feel overwhelmed, Accounts All Sorted is here to help. As Xero Platinum Partners, we offer expert bookkeeping and financial advice to keep your business thriving.

Ready to set your business up for a successful 2024? Contact Accounts All Sorted today and let us help you achieve your financial goals.

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