Thinking for your self

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This may sound silly but you do need to think for yourself, your business may not be like any other, your management team may need more information in some areas than others.

If you have an exceptional item that throws the accounts think about why and how you should handle it, ask your accountant for support and make sure that you understand what they suggest, make them explain it to you in words of one syllable if need be. Every business has special exceptions, get to know your company, discuss how you handle things with your accountant and with the management team to be sure everyone understands what is being done.

Accounting is seen by some as a necessary evil, it is up to you to show them that it is a valuable and vital business tool that can help them be more effective in managing the company, producing results and reaching or exceeding their goals.

Remember 95% of the work has to be done to meet statutory requirements, so the cost of producing good quality information is relatively small and could change your role from statutory compliance to key player in the development of the company.

Financial reporting may not be enough on it's own, management may want to know the turnover per person or the profit per sq ft of factory. These key indicators can be very useful and you should not limit yourself to purely financial information, subjective information such as customer satisfaction may be an important criteria in reviewing managements accounts, don't be afraid to incorporate additional information.

If you do have additional information to prepare, spreadsheets such as Excel are a great way to calculate and present the information. Using the ODBC links from Sage you can have Excel automatically update cells from your live Sage data, this can save a lot of time, trouble and errors, manually entering information.

Check our Sage tips section to see how to link excel with sage!