Creating Cash Flow with Old Inventory

Being a retail consultant, there is a comment many business owners used. It is “I’m not giving away my inventory”. It is most common among store owners that business is in bad shape. It is too bad that most retail owners don’t understand about inventory. Inventory does two things. It eithers makes you money or costs you money.

You need to have sufficient inventory to be profitable. However, having too much inventory is a larger problem than too little inventory.

Too much inventory ties up critical cash for your business. It can also result in more damages to your merchandise. The key is to find the right price to move your merchandise. Slow moving items take up space and cash that could be used for more profitable items.

There are times you have to adjust your pricing strategy. For example, let’s assume your retail price is double your cost. In this example, you pay $10 and it retails for $20. If it is a slow mover or discontinued item, what should be the new price? I would take 20% off for 1-3 months, 50% off and then 75% off. If you have to sell at 75% off, you will sell below cost. Cost should never be a factored in marking down an item.

I can hear you yelling now. I’m not giving away my inventory. You are looking at your inventory from the wrong perspective. Your product is worth what a customer will pay for it.

Using my example, let’s say you sold your product at 75% off. How much did you make on that item?Your answer most likely was a loss of $5.This was based on a $10 cost and $5 retail. That answer is partially correct. The more correct answer is that you made $5.

You took an item that was producing zero and turned it into $5 cash. You can take that cash and space and use it for a profitable item. Many times a business does not have enough cash to buy the needed quantities of the best-selling products. If you take the cash from the poor sellers and use it for good sellers, you will more than make your money- back.

No matter how good a buyer you are, there will be items that don’t sell. The key is to realize this and react before it ties up too much cash and profit.

An added benefit of taking care of your problem inventory is increased sales. You will get customers who will shop your store regularly looking for your markdowns. Many of them will buy your high gross items also. If you take care of your problem inventory regularly, your markdowns dollars will be less.

Inventory is critical to your business success. The key is to take action on the slow moving and discontinued. This will make your bottom line better in the long run.

Business Cost Savings Through Safety

Business Cost Savings Through Safety

Setting a health and safety program in place will reduce costs. Having a program will reduce accidents and will lead to lower company worker’s comp premiums; further business insurance companies prefer their customers to have health and safety programs. These insurance companies might even discount the premium if a program can be proved to exist. The average cost of an accident is $68,000. Direct costs in accidents such as worker’s comp and fines levied can close a business. Indirect costs such as low morale of employees, legal fees, and retraining can be as costly if not more.

A working program will:
1) Improve employee morale – Shows care in their well being
2) Reduce revenue loses – Fewer accidents keeps all employees at work
3) Give a boost to the customer – Makes sure business is operating optimally

Small businesses that have a voluntary health and safety program in place have fifty percent less accidents and reported insurance claims than that of their counterparts according to OHSA stats. Most small businesses fall below the legal requirements for having a formal health and safety program in place due to number of employees on staff. Sixty eight percent of reported accidents are in the service industry which shows even businesses such as retail establishments are not free of accidents.

A health and safety program can be started by writing a health and safety policy; this is simply values that a company wishes to convey in its work processes. Secondly, is how communication between all employees and owners will function. And lastly, put procedures in place to ensure safe practices.

To find unseen hazards and unsafe practices, an audit needs to take place. Take a hard look at the workplace and record all factors that may lead to injury. These hazards might be dangerous chemicals or as simple as a letter opener. Identifying these hazards will lead to procedures to controlling them. Controls such as “Don’t run with scissors in your hands” are effective. Write all procedures in a manual.

Implementing these health and safety procedures will be done with behavioral change. Some programs become weak and non effective because of:
1) No definition of safety practices – No written processes
2) No teamwork – Safety is communication from the top to bottom and vice versa. A well written plan will describe what roles everyone plays in safety policies.
3) No effective goals – The “accident free days” poster will come as a result of sound safety processes.
4) Wrong incentives – Money as a reward does not work well. Health and safety should be fun and worth employees effort. The right incentive plan can be cost effective and have obtainable goals. Incentive plans can include movie passes or simply “free coffee on the boss.” The insurance industry reports for a dollar spent on health and safety yields four to six dollars in savings.

Once all of the hard work of developing and implementing the health and safety program is done, set aside some time each month to review the workplace. Record what is found; this is a good practice to see dangerous trends that might occur such as a fire exit constantly being blocked. On the quarters of the year post a meeting with employees. These meetings are a great way to get vital feed-back from employees and keep them involved. At least once a year, do an audit to make sure your health and safety program is current with present business operations.

Bookkeeping Accounting Software Essential Requirement of the Organization

Account and Finance Critical Activity in the Small Bookkeeping Business. Accounting software is essential for any business as it gives many benefits like maintains all your financial records and helps in completing bookkeeping accounting requirements.

bookkeeping services, bookkeeping business, small business bookkeeping, bookkeeping software, small business bookkeeping software

Article Body:
In the area of Bookkeeping Accounting there are many critical financial activity which has require to compulsory in the small Organization to manage it. So For that Bookkeeping Accounting Software is essential in this time to get fast work. These types of work are very time consuming because of double data entry type of work. A useful benefit to those organizations and their financial staff is the quantity to which financial data maintain in the data base can be queried for financial control purpose.

Bookkeeping services India has own bookkeeping accounting software professional their expertise and experience handling most of the bookkeeping business accounting and financial software solutions:

* QuickBooks
* Peachtree
* Sage Line 50
* Quicken
* LaCerte
* Pro Tax

Financial Statements:
An accountant requires not only guarantee that the financial information is exact but also get any part of the accounting reports to reply bookkeeping accounting queries on the accounts. It is also offer a legal basis for the queries and report the financial statements at daily intervals.

But Financial Power is also required from middle level organization accounting software as the bookkeeper is often the head manager who has most important person understanding of every task. Templates are also required for reading and a perfect acquire of create a set of financial theory for tax purpose is that each inserted record is by other proof.

Accounting Software for small or middle level Business Profit:
Choose your Accounting Software for bookkeeping business but it is thing to do very carefully. Because of prefer your software will meet your most important work and your work running smoothly and improve your profit? There are numbers of bookkeeping accounting software available in the market but you have to find effectiveness, accurate and reliable from it and make your business fast. So be sure when your new business account software will purchase.

Any Bookkeeping Business requires the most important thing is Accounting Services. All process of Business has recorded carefully in day by day. For that Accounting Software is useful software for any Business to keep all your financial records and help to complete your bookkeeping accounting requirements. And generate daily, monthly and yearly reports for give you accurate future planning of your business.

If you are small Bookkeeping Business or large Business, you don’t want to hire personnel for software and want to low cost account software. For that it is best that use a web based software so you don’t worry about changing computers, storing the data and lost of data. And important thing is you can access it at any time.

Foreclosure Listings Home Buying Tips

Home buying is a big deal, but it doesn’t have to be difficult.

People buy homes for many different reasons. Most buy for the sole purpose of living the American Dream, others use the home buying market as an investment tool, and some even use the margins inherent in real estate transactions as their daily income. Many homes are sold each year as foreclosure listings. These can be purchased for a significant discount over market value.

There are many factors one needs to consider when buying a house, whether to live in or as an investment opportunity through a foreclosure listings directory.

First and most important is do the research. Know what you’re buying.

One of the most important factors to research when buying a home is location. City, State, and, even neighborhood should all be considered carefully.

We’ve heard it said over and over again. “Location, Location, Location”

So why is location so important? Well, unless you plan to live in the house forever, eventually, you or your estate will want to sell it. You want the home to appreciate in value. You also want to be able to sell quickly. What you don’t want is a house for sale sign sitting in your front yard for years.

It doesn’t matter how wonderful your property is, you’ll have a very difficult time trying to sell your home for top dollar in a bad neighborhood in a reasonable amount of time. This doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s a bad home. It simply means that there will be less demand. That’s not what you want when you decide or have to sell your house.

One needs to apply a neighborhood litmus test when buying a home. Things to consider include schools, nearby growth and development, and convenience. Local governmental agencies often list a school district’s rankings. This information can also be found on the Internet. If all else fails, real estate agents have access to this information and can be very helpful. The value of your home will appreciate much more if it is located in a neighborhood with good schools.

New construction nearby also plays a great role in improving the value of a house and should definitely be considered when buying a house. A neighborhood which is on the outskirts of a new development will benefit from the higher prices of the newly constructed homes. If, however, the neighborhood exhibits signs of decline, one should think twice before buying that house.

One other item to consider when looking for a house for sale is it’s proximity to places of convenience like shopping centers, transportation hubs, and parks. Remember, someone else will be house buying from you in the future. It will happen. And… They will be looking at the same factors at that time.

Business Strategy – Year End Considerations

As we enter the final weeks of 2005, you are undoubtedly hunting for gifts. While these are obvious year end considerations, you should also be reviewing your business strategy for 2006.

Business Strategy – 2005

Whether your fiscal year ends in December or doesn’t, the end of the month is a good time to take stock of how things went in 2005. While the old saying is “time flies”, it is particularly true for businesses. Business owners tend to be fixated on two to three month time periods. As a result, they can fail to see developments over longer periods of time.

After you’ve taken care of all your holiday gift purchases, you should have some down time in the last two weeks of the month. Business tends to slow down as people deal with the holidays, travel to see family and so on. This is the perfect time to go back and consider the business year. Specifically, you should focus on where your business was in January 2005. What were your goals at that time? Did you meet them during the year? If not, why? You will almost always be surprised when you realize how the business developed over the last year. This global view can give you a better perspective and evaluation of how things are going.

Business Strategy – 2006

After contemplating 2005, you should give consideration to what you want to accomplish and where you want to be by the end of 2006. Ask yourself the following:

1. What is a reasonable revenue increase for 2006 compared to 2005?

2. Are their products or services you should pursue?

3. Are their products or services you should drop?

4. If a strategy is underperforming, does it make objective sense to continue pursuing it or cut your losses?

5. What are your biggest frustrations and how can you deal with them?

6. Who are your most valued employees and have you taken a moment to thank them?

7. Who are your least valued employees and what should you do about it?

8. Which vendors or suppliers do great work for you and which don’t?

Many other questions will run through your mind. There are no wrong ones. What is important, however, is you write the goals and thoughts down and keep them somewhere private. Next December, you should pull them out and see how things are going.

Cheaper is Not Always Better

I work for a large insurance firm in the northwest, in an office with over 500 other employees. Management recently decided to replace our existing phone system as the old system was no longer meeting our needs. I and my co-workers were under the impression that they were going to update the system, as in “make an improvement”, and that we would have late model phones with technological advancements galore. Boy, were we in for a surprise.

One day a few weeks ago, we all came in to find new phones on our desks. These were not the state-of-the-art communication devices we had in mind. Instead of the sleek, sophisticated, caller IDing, multi-line handling, LCD displaying wonders of the modern age we all dreamed of, there was a simple phone with a keypad on the receiver…not unlike what you might have had at home 15 years ago. In addition to the new phone, there was a sheet which explained in graphically painful detail exactly which series of buttons one would have to push in order to make this thing function properly. We had to now enter a digit to put someone on hold, enter a three digit code to transfer someone (one digit, dial tone, two digits) and enter a ridiculously long series of numbers to access our voicemail.

Needless to say, we were in shock. I knew it wouldn’t take long before the roars of complaining would drown out the usual office din. Sure enough, by lunchtime our office manager came in to tell everyone that we were simply going to “try it out for a while” and that the company had saved thousands by choosing this option. I and the other employees were fairly certain that we had already lost thousands in reduced productivity that morning alone. Oh, well…it’s their company, we just bring in the money for them.

For the next few days, we tried to get used to saying “hold, please, while I transfer you”, removing the receiver from our faces and trying not to curse as we made a lame-duck attempt at pressing keys, listening and pressing more keys. It was a nightmare. We were getting pretty fed up with it, but just assumed that this was what we would have to deal with. Then, out of the blue, we came in one day to find real phones with real features at our desks. No more looking at the receiver while we frantically tried to key in numbers fast enough not to drop the call. No more ten digit voicemail “pins”. No more of having no idea who was calling or where the call came from. Ahhhh, relief at last.

Later the same day, we heard a rumor circulating around the office that the VP of operations had returned from a two week trip to New York. His words, upon seeing one of the phones management had originally purchased on his desk were, “get rid of them”. All it took were those four words from a higher-up to set things right. Unbelievable.

Can accounts receivable factoring help your business grow?

Are you stuck with great but slow paying clients? It is interesting how your biggest asset (great clients) can also be your biggest liability. But that is how business is. And as an owner you must adapt.

Whether you like it or not, slow paying customers are here to stay. As a rule of thumb, commercial clients pay their bills in 30 to 60 days. And lately, the trend has been deteriorating. So, what do you do if you have slow paying receivables.

Many owners try to go to the bank to get a business loan. Not surprisingly, few business owners get business loans. As a rule, banks will only finance companies that have long and established histories. This is not your case if your company is new or emerging from tough times.

If your biggest challenge is that you cannot afford to wait up to 60 days to get paid by your customers, then the solution is accounts receivable factoring. Most commonly known as factoring, this type of financing eliminates the usual wait to get paid. It provides you with the necessary funds to pay suppliers, meet payroll and take on new business opportunities.

And how does factoring work? Simple:

1. You finish the work and send an invoice to your client. You also send a copy to the accounts receivable factoring company.
2. The financing company advances you 70% to 90% of the invoice (a small reserve is held to handle disputes, etc.)
3. You get the funds in 24 hours
4. As soon the customer pays the invoice to the financing company, they rebate the reserve (less a small fee)

As you can see, accounts receivable factoring can easily be integrated into your business, providing you with prompt invoice payments. Usually, funds are advanced within 24 hours of submitting invoices.

Accounts receivable factoring is easy to qualify for. Accounts can be set up in as little as 4 business days. As opposed to business loans, the main requirement for factoring is to do business with strong credit worthy customers. So if you do business with good commercial clients (or the government), be sure to add factoring to your business tool chest.