Why I don’t believe in ‘year ends’

Business woman with lots going on around her.

Recently I looked up a company with a January year end.

They have still not filed their 2022 accounts with Companies House.

Given that you have to file your accounts within nine months of the end of your financial year, they are cutting it very close! They have less than a month to get this critical task done.

Yet such delays are not uncommon. Time and again, companies wait for the very last minute to file their annual accounts, or even file them late.

The last-minute dash to get your accounts in order is often hugely pressurising for everyone involved, with alternately desperate and annoyed messages exchanged between you and your accountants.

And it is terribly bad practice.

One of the downsides is that your credit rating can be affected. The credit agencies will either assume that you are trying to hide bad news, or that you are so disorganised that you can’t get your accounts in earlier. Because they are unable to form a view of your financial position based on statements that are 21 months’ old, you can be downgraded.

So why does it happen so often?

I believe there are two main reasons:

  1. Your accountant is not keeping your accounting records up-to-date year-round, so getting them into structured order once a year is a huge job.
  2. Your accountant isn’t very fussed about managing your accounts. If you haven’t given them the information they need, you won’t hear (much) from them until the deadline is close.

This is simply not a professional way to run a business.

And it’s not the way we work with our clients.

You see, we don’t believe in “year ends”. We believe your accounts should be in order every single month.

For us, that happens naturally when we prepare your monthly management accounts. These are the much more detailed accounts, tailored to your business, which give you a complete picture of your financial situation on a monthly basis.

This can’t be done without your basic financial records being in order. So it makes no substantial difference to us whether we’re preparing your accounts on month 1 or month 9 – for a standard business with no complicating factors, we’re always prepared.

Our all-time record for filing accounts with Companies House is just five weeks after our client’s year end.

We also had a client a few years ago with a February year end, who was subject to audit. Even under those stressful circumstances, they still filed within two months…

No fuss. No panic. No last-minute rush or pressure.

Just orderly financial management, with lots of attention to detail, year-round.

If that’s the kind of financial management you’re looking for, please get in touch with me today.

We typically work with companies turning over £1 million or more, who would like to grow faster and maximise their profitability – and who understand that they need to professionalise the way they manage their finances in order to do so.

Or call our office on 01279 647 447 to find out more.

Warmly,

Garry

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