Consulting with My Business ManagerIan McManus
Every successful business needs regular access to financial information and to non-financial performance data that drives the business’ results.
My Business Manager automates these processes and makes it easier to be aware of how the business is performing and whether there are any potential problems that need early attention before they affect the business and the profits. In most businesses, there are several relationships;
1. The Business Owner
2. The Business Manager or Supervisor
3. The Bookkeeper
4. The Accountant or Financial Advisor
5. The Franchisor (if the business is a franchise)
6. Shareholders (if different to the Owner or Manager)
7. Staff (need to be aware what their roles are and how they can contribute to the results)
8. The bank (if you have an overdraft or loan
9. Possibly a landlord (for those businesses that need to report results as part of their lease)
10. Possibly a financial planner or investment advisor
What all of these people have in common is that they need to know what the result should be and they need to know what the actual results are.
Managing Business Performance
Managing business performance is a continuous process of setting (and continually revising) budgets or targets that will help you to reach your business goals and objectives and checking to see whether they are being achieved by comparing to actual results
My Business Manager is a continuous business performance model that uses financial and non-financial information to get the best out of a business.
Don’t set your sights too high. Select 10 – 15 critical items that you want to monitor. It has been said that 70% of the effort in managing a business, is in managing the non-financial activities that contribute to the revenue or that help to manage expenses.
We suggest that you adopt a process of checking a high-level management report daily, a more detailed Business Snapshot weekly and detailed management reporting monthly.
We also suggest that a monthly review be conducted as part of the business performance improvement program. If your business is more “dynamic”, then you may need weekly monitoring or even daily monitoring.
If cashflow is “tight” then you may need to be monitoring that on a daily or weekly basis.
Accountants, Business Coaches and Bookkeepers
Accountants, Business Coaches and Bookkeepers using My Business Manager, should organise a monthly or Quarterly “Board Meeting” with each Client to review the Business Snapshot results and to discuss problems and improvements to the existing business.
The “Client Watch” dashboard is designed to help with monitoring Client and Business results, highlighting potential issues before they become a serious problem. From Client Watch, you are able to launch the “Your Business” CFO report, produce a simple 3-month data analysis report to indicate trends over the last 3 months, and, if necessary, you can launch the Client’s accounting solution to drill-down for more details or to make adjustments and enter journals.
The “Your Business” report has been designed to give each business an overview of business operations and to highlight any potential problems.
If you need more detail, the My Business Manager “Professional” solution provides more functionality and more detail.
The My Business Manager “Business Snapshot” is an ideal way of reviewing any business in more detail. It is easy to tailor to any business’ exact requirements. It comprises of a Title page, Executive Summary, selected dashboard, the default reports and, if active, non-financial performance KPI summary data. All items are optional.
Starting with the Default Business Snapshot, add or delete items as required to focus on the items that are critical to each individual business.
Using the My Business Manager “Professional” solution, there is a wide range of management reporting, budgeting, forecasting, cashflow and Financial KPIs plus Consolidations for those businesses that have multiple business entities.
We also offer ClientFileSync for automated offsite backup of your Client’s accounting files plus the ability to synchronise a copy between the Client, Accountant and Bookkeeper using “Cloud” technology.
Potential Revenue Streams
These consulting services are made easier and cost-effective by utilising My Business Manager. When small business clients can actually see and understand what their accounting data means, you have new opportunities to provide them with new consulting services to monitor and build their businesses.
These new services may be delivered directly by you or indirectly by a business associate or an MBM specialist you may nominate. In both cases, you can gain additional revenue.
These consulting services may include but are not restricted to:
• Reviewing a Client’s accounts and ensuring that they are set up correctly
• Providing dashboards and reports to help clients manage their own businesses
• Explaining MBM reports, what they mean and what clients need to monitor
• Hosting regular board meetings to review results and address highlighted issues
• Providing regular oversight with an Executive Overview service
• Providing business consolidations to show how combined entities are performing
• Helping with preparation of budgets based on past performance or future targets
• Helping to create a Business Plan which can be understood by all stake-holders
• Assisting with business planning and business improvement
• Providing regular business mentoring on key issues
The Business Health Check Stage 2, may also identify services that your clients need. If you can’t provide them yourself, sub-contract them or arrange for others to provide the services. Set up reciprocal referral services with other Professionals in your area. Most providers will willingly cross-refer business, helping the Client in all ways.
The importance of a regular management review cycle
For effective business management, we suggest that you set up a regular reporting and review schedule for every business.
Daily (or a couple of times per week)
1. Check the Client Watch Dashboard to see if there are any potential problems.
2. Send a “Your Business” report to every business client and ask them to review it to make sure that there are no serious issues.
Weekly / Monthly
1. For each business, import accounting data into MBM
2. Check that each business has entered non-financial data into PKPI
3. Run a Business Snapshot for each business
4. See any problems that need more detail?
5. Run additional detailed reports
6. Add your comments to the reports
7. Send Business Snapshot (and reports) to Clients for action
1. Run a “Board Meeting” with all management and stakeholders present
2. Collectively review the Business Snapshot and detailed reports (See Reporting and Monitoring)
3. Discuss problems that have occurred over last month.
4. Discuss the goals and plans for the next month.
1. Review Operational Goals
2. If budget has been exceeded or not met, consider re-casting the forecast by saving the actual results to date and either the budget or a re-cast budget for the remaining periods.
Six Monthly or Annually
1. Review Strategic Goals
2. Run a SWOT analysis
3. Assess capabilities of the business, managers and staff
4. Review market positioning