This websites uses cookies, by continuing to browse the site you are agreeing to our use of cookies. View our privacy policy.

You’ve survived the pandemic – now’s the time to update your business plan

11 May 2021 •

Life and businesses have gone through a rollercoaster in the past 13 months, as we slowly start to come out of this third lockdown, Fulham based chartered accountants, Warrener Stewart takes a look at what comes next. 

“Businesses have gone through some remarkable and challenging times in the last year,” recalls audit manager James Shepherd. “Some have been forced to close due to imposed lockdowns, whilst others have faced changes brought about through Brexit while having to embrace working from home. 

As chartered accountants it is our mission to help clients make better informed business decisions with greater confidence. It is going to be important for businesses to remain resilient – whilst the Bank of England's chief economist " believes there is pent-up financial energy" waiting to be unleashed, small to medium sized businesses will still need to plan. Some business owners may find their old business model needs to be adapted – that’s where we can help ensure that a business fulfils its potential and the owner reaches their personal goals.” 

Adapting your business model 

Over the coming months as the world transitions back to workplace-based life many companies will be forced to adapt. The most obvious change will be our home versus office life with many companies adopting new hybrid working practices giving greater flexibility to work from home for part of the week.  

“Going forward for companies with a hybrid working from home model there may be economies of scale to be made,“ notes James. “For example, consider how much space your business will need. Many others are in the same situation - are you able to make savings by reducing office space or even sub-let part of your building?” 

Review business overheads 

Several businesses reported they saved money in 2020 – largely on ancillary costs such as entertainment, travel, heating and even stationery. Now is the time, James advises to look at your business overheads and examine what other savings could be made.  

“Carrying out a cost cutting exercise is a simple way for a business to manage its finances,” James acknowledges. “Our highly experienced staff can help identify where and how a business can save by reviewing what are realistic costs. Sometimes it can be simple changes like renegotiating with a supplier – especially if your business model may have altered.” 

Embrace technology 

If there is one overriding takeaway from the pandemic it’s technology. Both our personal and business lives were lived over it, through and because of it! Cloud accounting software like Xero and Quickbooks even helped companies continue with tasks such as invoicing and filing business taxes whilst in different locations. Plus, accounting packages are a perfect and safe way to share information with your own accountant. 

“One of the latest developments to some packages includes using AI to populate invoices directly to the purchase ledger,” confirms James. “This way electronic copies of invoices can easily be uploaded and stored centrally. When it’s time to prepare VAT returns having access to the original invoice will help us since we no longer have to wade through paper copies to check the information we submit for VAT returns is correct. Also, it also gives us a current snapshot of the company’s outgoings.” 

As life and businesses start to bounce back Warrener Stewart is preparing to ensure its clients’ businesses get all the advice and support they need to make. If you would like more information about how your business could fulfil its potential then call 020 7731 6163. 

“Warrener Stewart understands our business; they give us more than any other Accountancy service we have ever received in the past. They are extremely commercially aware and very current when it comes to changes in tax policy. ”
Diana Hoare - Anderson Hoare