How Healthy Is Your SaaS Business? These 6 Metrics Will Help You Figure That Out
As a Sage Intacct certified accounting and implementation firm, Lavoie CPA is excited to share the latest findings for SaaS businesses to become successful in 2021.
From startups to organizations ready to scale each one of these indicators is an invaluable piece of information to evaluate your company’s overall health — not to mention prep you for that looming board meeting in the near future.
In this infographic we will dive into why each of these metrics is the difference between getting your next round of funding, scaling year over year, or hitting the wall.
Get the infographic and learn why you should care, how to calculate, and an interesting fact about the following KPIs:
The beginning of a new year always signals a time for trend spotting Which financial opportunities, challenges and changes should companies prepare for now? Below are six soon-to-be realities that you should consider for 2019. .
CFOs take on more
The role of the CFO has merged with that of the COO to
assume strategy and operations functions. This calls for greater collaboration
in business areas such as marketing, procurement, sales and design/R&D in
order for CFOs to build sound budget strategies and operational processes.
demands disrupt industries.
Think of it as forced evolution. Millennials and Gen Z crowd
are making their wishes known – pushing for greater transparency, asking for more
sustainable products, embracing technical conveniences. Business has no choice
but to respond – re-evolving business models, selling on social media, adopting
finance smarter and faster.
Automation and new technologies are making finance software
programs do more with less. This leaves more time for focusing on the
organization’s strategic vision.
We’re grappling with uncertainty
From foreign policy to data regulation, businesses are
operating under the strain of uncertainty. Expect another year of having to
navigate a turbulent, highly politicized environment.
Even the workforce is
2019 will introduce a diverse generation of employees with
new expectations and wants. For accounting, the skills gap widens, re-training requirements
grow, and a higher level of contract employees emerges.
New data risks are
Companies will need to have a deeper understanding of General
Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), because there will be a higher level of
concern about data security as more info is created, collected, and stored online
which allows for the possibility of hacking.
As these developments proceed, the role of
finance becomes more important and extensive. Many companies are turning to service providers to help them make the
transformation. This may entail consulting services, augmenting current staff
or even outsourcing the financial and accounting function.
Are you a startup and are considering hiring accounting and finance personal?
Having the right finance and accounting policy, procedures and technology in place could be critical to your success. Lots of startups outsource many of the tasks not related to your company’s core competency, including accounting & finance. Should you invest the money in hiring FTEs and purchase software or use an outsourced firm? Let’s look at four ways hiring an outsourced firm can help your startup business.
Select the right accounting package.
Too many startup businesses purchase off the shelf accounting packages that do not provide proper visibility into their business. As a result, they either spend a lot of time with Excel spreadsheets to try and gain necessary information or they simply neglect items that inhibit growth and put the business at risk.
With the proper technology you have visibility into your business from anywhere, enabling you to spevd more time on the business instead of in the business.
Help with investment capital.
Whether you’re applying for a business loan or seeking outside funding from angel investors or venture capital firms, accurate and up-to-date financials are essential.
Professional services firms will provide you with the up-to-date financial statements, along with explanations of the data in those financial statements, which can help your company standout amidst all those other businesses.
Be audit, partner and/or investor ready from day one.
CFO guidance including advice, counsel and insight — providing you with financial statements, budgets, forecasts and dashboards to monitor all your financial data. It’s one thing to have all the financial data you need to run your business. But the real benefit is to have someone to explain exactly what the financial statements mean, and help you to make the decisions that will steer your company toward growth.
4 . Scale with your company.
With outsourced services your variable cost become a scalable fixed cost. Why add non-revenue generating cost when you can gain resources, technology, quality and support all tailored to your needs? When your company grows the outsourced services company grows with you.
Lavoie CPA provides accounting & finance, technology and human resources support all as a service.
Most companies that are thriving view accounting as a strategic function. Companies relying on bookkeeping have a hard time keeping up in today’s changing climate. Bookkeeping by itself does not provide opportunities. In a fiercely competitive work environment, companies that properly manage finance can grow and protect themselves from risk.
The opportunities are exciting for the future but it also comes with lots of challenges. Too many companies are stuck looking into the past because of lack of expertise and or technology. It is important to understand the past, but essential to have the knowledge and tools to be able to see in real-time and make educated predictions into the future. As companies grow, hiring and retaining qualified employees can be a difficult task with lots of uncertainty.
A growing number are relying on Accounting as a Service (AaaS) to gain a competitive advantage. AaaS combines tactical and strategic accounting and includes leading software.
Top 3 benefits of Accounting as a Service:
Focus on Core
Concentrate on growing the business
Eliminate staff turnover complexities
Ability to scale as you grow
Qualified controlled/CFO leading accounting and finance department
Improve cash flow
Reduce financial risk
Audit ready at all times
Real-time visibility into your business performance
Reduced IT headaches
Integration with other applications to eliminate information silos
Forward thinking companies put themselves a head of the curve. Interested in learning more about Accounting as a Service? Contact us.
Outsourced Accounting or Accounting as a Service (AaaS) provider can be the catalyst to take your organization to the next level. For some SMBs, accounting is not looked at as a strategic function of the organization, but it should be. It also shouldn’t take focus away from growing your core business. Lots of SMBs don’t consider Outsourcing. Here are 5 main reasons why.
1) They think it is too expensive
By using Accounting as a Service, you have access to shared service center. Providers have put a lot of investment, thought, and execution into their model and have staffed accordingly. With an AaaS provider you now have access to a full accounting department that often is less expensive than one full-time FTE. This doesn’t even figure in technology costs that come with the service.
2) It is the same as bookkeeping services
Bookkeepers are responsible for recording daily financial transactions. Controllers are responsible for financial reporting, internal audit and internal controls. CFO are responsible for financial planning, financial data analysis and strategic planning. By relying only upon a bookkeeper you are stuck looking in the past and cannot see into the future to effectively make critical decisions for your business. AaaS providers ensure daily transactions are done correctly but also greatly reduce risks and provide necessary forward-thinking strategy to help growth your business.
3) We can just do the same in-house
For most SMBs it is hard to justify the expense of having a bookkeeper, controller, VP of finance and CFO. All positions have importance. You don’t want to pay a senior level person to do daily transactions and you definitely don’t want to ask an entry level person to manage financial risks.
4) We cannot have any finance staff in-house
Often AaaS providers work with internal staff to fill voids. Yes, providers can function as the entire finance department but often work with existing staff to help maximize their production.
5) We have more control and stability by utilizing in-house staff
Employees turnover and training are always on the minds of companies. If you don’t have a defined professional develop plan for each employee, you are at risk of losing your top talent to other opportunities. By using an AaaS provider you eliminate the risk of employee turnover. You also will not miss a beat when people people are out sick, on vacation, or on leave.
According to a recent report by Adaptive Insights, CFOs want their employees to spend less time on collecting and preparing data and more time on forecasting and analysis. The survey revealed that financial planning and analysis (FP&A) teams are currently spending 53% of their time on reporting and data gathering alone.
“Reporting, whether it’s on actuals or forecast or planning should be quick. We shouldn’t be spending a lot of time on that,” says Jim Johnson, CFO of Adaptive Insights. “We should be spending much more time on the model that’s supporting it. The predictive analysis, the key performance indicators and the stuff that is really important for the company.”
There is a good reason why employees should spend more time on analytics. Oracle found that businesses who were effective at integrating financial and operating data, using analytics in processes and utilizing predictive analytics outranked their peers by 70% on profit and revenue.
How Can You Improve Your FP&A Process?
Implement a Dynamic Planning Process
First of all, your business need to incorporate a FP&A process that allow for flexibility. Rolling forecasts, for example, is one way to ensure you are adapting to market forces. Since rolling forecasts ultimately is an approach where you add or drop data on a rolling basis, you consequently have real-time insights to your performance against your predictions. APQCreported that an organization can save a median of 25 days on the annual budgeting cycle by using rolling forecasts.
“It makes no sense to use a 19th-century tool to manage 21st-century company in a volatile global economy,” argues Steve Player, a program director at the Beyond Budgeting Roundtable. “In the old days, the CFO sat in the back of the ship recording what happened. Now, the CFO stands on the bridge looking forward and adjusting for variables.”
Traditional annual budgets have limits. They often take too long to prepare, and when completed the data is already out of date. Rolling forecasts offer continuous updates to your data and a longer horizon with data up to 12-18 months ahead. Thus, you have much more accurate data and reliable insights. This, as a result, allows you to take more strategic decisions about your business.
Collaboration among employees and management is crucial for your business. First, they help you realize your goals, but they can also aid in reducing hidden costs. According to research byCEB, hidden budgeting and forecasting costs may prevent companies from realizing their full potential of investments in FP&A improvements.
How do businesses encourage collaboration? There’s one simple answer. Leverage technology. Cloud-based software is a great solution for companies that have data that needs to be shared and aggregated by more than one employee. In addition, cloud software also allows for employees to access the same data from virtually anywhere. Finally, most cloud-based software providers offers integration with other enterprise systems, which allows you to have one source for your performance management.
While you may think your business is doing well enough, your competitors are advancing by implementing better FP&A processes like the ones discussed above. Don’t wait, instead, invest in FP&A processes that will help your business achieve outstanding results and reduce hidden costs.