Accounting and planning
Every business must keep sufficient records of all business transactions. It is a legal requirement to document all financial transactions (and retain records/receipts for a minimum of 6 years). These records are also an essential means of analysing your business’ performance. There are many different options when it comes to book-keeping and accounting for your business. You may decide to invest in appropriate accounting software, create your own spreadsheet to manage your accounts or perhaps you might prefer the more traditional manual book-keeping route using accounts books (available from a good stationers). If you do need advice on setting up a suitable accounting process for your business, our Business Support programme can help so please get in touch.
Once your records start to provide a regular analysis on how your business is performing, you can compare where you are with where you anticipated you might be at this point of your journey by comparing actual figures to those set out in your budget or business plan.
A business plan is a vital component that sets out your vision for the business and maps where you have started, where you would like to finish and how you anticipate you will get there. We have recently published a Business plan guide that can be accessed here.
Support from the HMRC
HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) are offering additional help and support with free webinars, emails and videos that include subjects such as self-employment, employment, international trade, construction industry schemes (CIS) and VAT.
The support breaks into the following:
- Free starting in business webinars and e-learning.
- HRMC guide to software and mobile apps to help you to keep records for your business.
- The HMRC ‘ready reckoner’ also enables sole traders to quickly establish their tax liability on a weekly or monthly basis, which is particularly useful when budgeting for self-assessment bills.
- Tax Guide for the self-employed
- Business expenses guide for the self-employed
HMRC have also developed a new series of short video clips to help those who are self-employed to quickly deal with common issues. The following links will help to lead you to the video of most interest to your business:
- Registering for Self Assessment (1:07)
- Your first SA Tax Return (3:41)
- Viewing your calculation (1:01)
- Paying your Self Assessment tax bill (2:58)
- Budgeting for your Self Assessment tax bill (1:55)
- Important Dates for Self Assessment (3:03)
- Can’t pay your tax bill? (1:57)
- Self-Assessment Penalties (1:48)
The series of films can also be watched in sequence through the HMRC Youtube Playlist.
HMRC has also created the following videos to help those new to employing people.
The links are;