3 Tips to Make the Most of the Fiscal Year-End
Preparing your fiscal year-end information often feels stressful—there are receipts to sort out and reports to review, and you need to make sure you have all the necessary information about your income and expenses. It can be overwhelming, and it can make the year-end feel daunting.
The end of the fiscal year isn’t just a time to collect receipts and find invoices, however. It’s also a time to reflect on how your past year went, what went well and what didn’t, and what you can change for next year.
Here are 3 tips so you can make the most of your fiscal year-end.
1. Consider redoing your files
One of the most overwhelming parts of the fiscal year-end is finding all the invoices, receipts, and reports you need so you can properly file your taxes. Pay attention to how easy it was—or wasn’t—to find what you needed his past year.
Did you have to search 15 different places for all your receipts? Did you have a combination of online and physical invoices? Did you have clearly labeled folders for everything? Did you leave everything for the last minute?
If you found yourself searching high and low for every piece of paper you needed, you might want to consider revising your paperwork so it’s easier and less time-consuming to manage.
Can you keep track of everything through software and apps? Is there technology or equipment that can help you? Is it worth investing in a filing cabinet?
The effort you put now into sorting your paperwork will pay off hugely every year when you can quickly and easily find all the information you need. Let’s face it, you’ll come up against the fiscal year-end every year so you may as well be systematic about it.
2. Reflect on your year
The fiscal year-end is a perfect time to reflect on how the past year went. Celebrate the big successes, but remember to focus on other victories as well. Even if you didn’t meet your financial targets, did you survive a particularly tough year? Did you manage to pivot your business and try a new model? Did you take some risks and learn from them? Did you grow your business or expand your offerings?
It’s great to have goals for each year and celebrate when you achieve them, but it’s also important to look at where things didn’t go according to plan and how you grew from those situations. You may need to refine your business plan if you’re not meeting your financial targets, or rethink how you arrive at your goals in the first place.
Do this before you start planning the year ahead, so you can revise your strategies going forward.
3. Plan for the future
Now that you’ve reflected on what went well and what went sideways last year, you can better plan for next year. Research upcoming events and schedule your marketing calendar. Plan ahead to address slow times or busy periods. If you didn’t meet your financial targets last year, either change how you set your goals or your strategies for achieving them.
Many retailers offer big discounts at the end of the fiscal year. Does it make sense for you to make a purchase right now? Should you buy new equipment, technology, or other goods at this time? It may be worth it if you have the money to do so and you need those items.
Although the fiscal year-end can feel stressful, it’s also a fantastic time to reflect on the past year and celebrate your achievements. You can take the time to plan ahead and incorporate the lessons you learned from the past year to make the upcoming year your most successful.
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