Know your numbers - Information powers growth
When it comes to growing a successful business, few things are as important as having a clear picture of where your business is at and an equally clear plan for where it’s going. That’s where a good accounting software package comes in.
Software that is able to help you extract the right information, quickly and usefully, can make a huge difference to the growth potential of your business.
Accredo has been providing exactly this for New Zealand customers for over 30 years. Its accounting software is specifically tailored for small and medium enterprises that have started to outgrow the basic accounting products they may have started out with.
“Most ‘solo-preneurs’ have figured out some magic,” Accredo director Paul Wilson says. “They know their point of difference. They know how to serve their customers’ needs. The business is growing. They need to start adding troops. And now the question is, how do they make sure the things that made them successful keep happening – so they’re not having to apologise to customers, or not really knowing where the business is going anymore because they can’t hold it inside their head.
“That’s often when businesses come and talk to us. They feel the business is growing, and as owners they feel they’re starting to lose control – getting speed wobbles. That’s where we can help.”
People sometimes think of accounting systems as a cost, but they can actually be an incredibly valuable asset, says Wilson. For instance, if you are able to see at a glance exactly what, when and how much your business spent with a creditor last year, you have an immediate and powerful negotiating tool next time you meet that creditor.
Accredo provides information about spending trends which offer deeper insights into spending behaviour.
It’s the power of information: “Any accounting product can print out a list of transactions,” Wilson says. “But that’s data, not information.”
As a New Zealand company, Accredo also understands the complexities inherent in New Zealand businesses of all sizes: our geographical diversity, our distance from key markets.
“Most accounting software packages from overseas have no idea,” says Wilson. “They think, ‘Fifteen staff, how complex can it get?’ Well, quite complex, actually. New Zealand companies have to deal with what’s there and can’t dictate terms. If their customers or suppliers do things in a certain way they have to ‘get with the programme’.”
Pushing through to success
“I don’t think businesses that are scared of change will grow,” says Accredo general manager Tish Brindle. “The ones that just sit there because change is scary – the wheels fall off. The ones that succeed are the ones that have someone with enough vision to see it’s going to be painful and there’s going to be a period of shake-up, but they can look past it and say, ‘This amount of change is going to lead to us being able to push out to bigger and better things.’”
Many, if not most, business owners find it hard to let go of the control they had in the early days. But doing just that is critical, if you want to grow your business, says Wilson.
“It’s the owners who find a way of increasing their reach who are successful,” he says. “Whether that’s through using systems like ours or nurturing the right staff. I think a lot of business owners are afraid of the machine starting to shake – ‘If I let go of this it will all fall apart.’
“Now, if you’ve got good people and you communicate your vision to them and let them have autonomy, they’ll grow the business alongside you.”
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