Whatever the business you run or the sector you operate within, our advice is that you need to always be looking at least 3 months ahead. And that’s especially the case at the moment. But good forecasting is an equal mix of science and art…
Why’s that? Because no-one knows what the short-term future holds, and it’s more than true right now – it’s changing so quickly. So having fixed plans and budgets produced and in place for the next 3 months just isn’t relevant – or, in some instances, sensible – for many business owners.
Instead, we recommend you get some peace of mind by exploring the different probabilities and then make your decisions accordingly. You’ll sleep better at night once you’ve looked at the right numbers and got a better idea of the best possible plan of action – and we’re always here to help.
Don’t stick your head in the sand – be informed
One of the things that’s really worrying business owners right now – it typically sits near the top of the “I know I need to do it, but it’s too hard, so I’m going to leave it” considerations – is a cashflow forecast that looks at different scenarios.
The most successful businesses spend significant amounts of time planning ahead, carefully considering the impact that different opportunities and threats will have on their operations. Asking those “what if?” questions and being able to see the impact on the numbers before you make decisions one way or another is a real enabler of sustainable success.
Wholly understandably, you might not have the dedicated time or resources to be able to emulate quite that level of detail at this particular moment in time, but that’s no excuse for not undertaking any forecasting at all. So don’t stick your head in the sand.
If your bookkeeper is struggling to help you get to grips with forecasting the next few months, or you’re spending valuable time trying, and maybe failing, to clarify all the “what if?” questions that are relevant to your business right now, please don’t despair – just let us help. You can even take advantage of a free 30-minute call with one of our qualified and commercially experienced Financial Controllers to help you do the number crunching that your bookkeeper doesn’t have the expertise to produce properly.
You really need to keep your finger on the pulse right now…
It’s so important to keep one eye a few weeks ahead of what’s actually happening in your business this week. Because you’ll soon have employee costs, other fixed overheads and VAT liabilities to cover, even if sales are significantly lower than expected. What might that scenario mean for your business?
Forecasting is an art and a science, and it takes practice and experience to pull in all the different variables. So it’s perfectly fine if it’s not really your thing – or if you find your regular bookkeeper is looking slightly sick and overwhelmed at the prospect of helping you steer your business forward!
Our Financial Controllers have spent their whole career forecasting and modelling. We’re always available to help you access well-thought-through scenario plans that will help you make more confident decisions in these unique and challenging times.
Creating a proper cashflow forecast could prove to be a life-saving – maybe even a game-changing – move for your business. And it will take far less time and effort than you’d probably imagine. That’s because our Financial Controllers are expert at efficiently modelling different probabilities to help you see what options you have, and what impact your choices will have on your cashflow for this year and beyond.
Without the all-important visibility and clarity that cashflow forecasting brings, your business is unlikely to be in any healthy shape to fulfil its true potential – even at the best of times.
So get your finger on that pulse, and start forecasting short-term probabilities (and impacts) today.
Why not download our simple 13-week cash flow forecast template to help with your scenario planning.
Ready to chat? We’d love to hear how you’re doing and see where we can help