An industry-first Business Funding Guide that aims to help Australian small businesses tackle the funding crisis has been launched.
The guide is primarily aimed at SME trusted advisors like accounts receivables and financial modelling professionals to help small business owners find the right funding and increase their likelihood of having funding approved.
The guide was developed by the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman (ASBFEO) in partnership with Scottish Pacific Business Finance. Also launched was FitSME- Essential Guide to Business Funding which gives small business owners the most important information they need to know about becoming ‘financially fit.’
“The biggest barrier to small business growth is access to finance,” said ASBFEO Ombudsman, Kate Carnell. The growth of young people entering entrepreneurship was referenced. “We want to see more of them,” Carnell said. “It is essential that small business owners understand the range of financial providers and products on the market.”
Senior Tax Advocate, Susan Franks CA, also spoke at the event: “Small business owners are often time-poor, cash poor, working against a backdrop of wide-ranging business and regulatory issues,” she said. “Every time I walk down the streets of Castle Hill and see for lease signs outside of shops, it brings tears to my eyes, because really the average lifespan of the majority of small businesses is three years.”
“This guide is not a magical wand as the underlying business still needs to have good fundamentals and not all businesses do. However, it helps accountants coach clients on sound business practices.”
Scottish Pacific CEO Peter Langham agreed that more could be done to support the businesses that make up the majority of the Australian economy. He touched on the little, costly things that occur every day when running a business that people don’t think about. “Business owners operate on long hours and carry a lot of responsibility, working so hard to grow their business,” he said. “We feel very strongly that the key to their success is understanding where to get assistance, including ways they can finance their enterprises so they can find funding that fits their needs.”
“Business operators looking to grow, employ and stimulate the economy, need to consider all of the funding options, including options that are not linked to their personal property, to make the best choice for their business.“
The guide is a handy checklist that accountants can use to step their clients through important funding choices. It focuses on understanding the existing cash flow, ensuring the separation of personal and business finances. And developing realistic business plans.
A financial checklist includes:
– Getting business accounts in order
– Create monthly cash flow financing
– Ensure a clean company credit report
– Check the Personal Property Securities Register
– Sort out ATO affairs
– And more…
In a climate of late payments affecting cash flow, poor funding and lack of time and resources, the guide is a helpful tool that can assist small business owners to make better financial decisions based on information that they otherwise wouldn’t have known about or had the time to research.
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