I think we can safely say that 99% of us have improved our IT skills in some way as a result of living through lockdown, even if it’s only how to have video calls with our family.

The biggest change for businesses has been pushing on with their digitalisation plan to ensure they can continue to trade with the possibility of another lockdown on the horizon. This may include moving your business online, but for many, this includes moving your finances to the cloud. If you haven’t made this move, you need to catch up and fast, as this can leave you at a huge disadvantage to your competitors.

Your competition will have information about money in the bank, money they owe and most importantly, money that is owed to them, readily available at their fingertips, in real-time. By having this information readily available, 24/7, it allows you to stay on top of your cashflow and constantly be able to make informed decisions about what next steps your business needs to take to ensure you have the best chance of recovering.

But the biggest lesson that the most financially astute businessmen and women have already learnt is that you can’t take cashflow for granted and sales are only a final at the point you receive payment.

You are now living in a world where many businesses have been able to access lending that if they had gone through the normal lending process, would have been denied due to being unable to demonstrate good financial management and sound business proposition. With the extension of the deadline for repaying deferred VAT, PAYE and the possibility of the Bounce Back lending criteria changing, many businesses have been given much more credit than they would normally be able to easily access without setting out a clear plan for repayment.

I don’t believe most business owners intentionally build up debt to end up in liquidation, but sadly I fear this is the situation a lot of businesses will be heading towards if they don’t get on top of their finances on a weekly and monthly basis.

If you don’t have up-to-date management information on a weekly or monthly basis, you don’t have the information in order to make informed decisions to help navigate your business through Pandemic Normal and beyond. Nor do you have a cashflow plan in place which takes into account the debts that need repaying.

Our 5-minute cashflow tool is designed to help our clients keep on top of these issues. If you’re not using it already, you can download it using the form here.

What it won’t tell you, however, is who of your customers might also be in this situation.

The debtor collection process actually starts as part of the sales process where you consider how much cash you have tied up in making a sale and making your payment terms clear at the outset. That might be in materials, labour costs and so on, and is often why for large jobs, you are asked for a deposit up front to reduce the cash tied up.

The best businesses will then have a consistent approach for reminders until payment is received. I’m sure this sounds like common sense, but often credit control is done on an ad hoc basis when cash is needed but, especially at this time, this approach will expose you to an increased risk of bad debts.

Getting your finances onto a Cloud-based system like Xero is the first step for improving your finances. But by teaming it with an app like Chaser or Fluidly, you too can automate your approach to regular, polite chases, leaving you or your credit controller to focus on the trickier payers early.

We personally use Chaser to free up some of our credit controller’s time to help clients make the tricky calls chasing those harder debts and taking your bad payers through to court action. Head over to Chaser’s website to see read how Chaser helped us reduced one of our client’s time spent on credit control by 90%!

At a time when the business world has been massively disrupted by Covid-19, as a business owner you need to be constantly making decisions on what steps to take next to give your business the best chance of recovering. It’s time to start embracing cloud technology.

Whether you are new to cloud accounting or already started the shift I can guarantee there are ways to improve what you are doing for the benefit of your profits. Download our guide to embracing cloud accounting, which details:

  • Why is it so important to put the technology to work for you now?
  • The 5 fundamental tools of cloud accounting
  • Choosing the right Cloud Accounting Platform
  • Cloud Invoice Automation tools
  • Automated Credit Control tools
  • Cashflow Forecasting Tool
  • Finding the right apps for you
  • What to do now

Start embracing cloud technology and take your business to the next level by downloading our guide to embracing cloud accounting using the form below. 


Embrace cloud accounting in pandemic normal

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Emma White



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