In the early days of business growth, entrepreneurs often try to do their own bookkeeping.
However, as their business expands, they soon realize that it is too hard for them to balance all the responsibilities involved.
Then it becomes necessary to create an internal accounting department or hire an external accounting firm.
As a result, the accountancy market continues to grow, and accountants and accounting office owners are becoming more and more successful.
If you are interested in growing in this direction, you need to check how to create an accounting office business plan. Let’s proceed?
Before you decide to set up an office, analyze your chances in the market and the risks associated with such an idea by creating a business plan.
How to do it? Where to start?
This is what this article is about.
But first, it is worth defining what an accounting office is and how running it is like.
What is an accounting office?
The encyclopedia of management definition says it is a business entity that provides services to individuals, businesses, institutions, and other business entities.
In short, as the founder of an accounting firm, you will primarily deal with the provision of accounting services for various clients, most often entrepreneurs.
Occasionally, employees also accept orders related to the maintenance of personnel records of companies.
What is a business plan?
A business plan is a document that defines the key aspects of a company’s operations. However, it should not be static. It is analysis that needs to be systematically updated with market changes and company development.
A business plan is a great way to share information about your company, as well as analyze and test different scenarios before changes are implemented, and it’s one of the responsibilities of an HR department.
It is a useful tool when planning activities resulting from seeking additional funding, such as creating applications for business loans or attracting investors.
A basic business plan should describe such aspects of running a business as: company purpose, operations, and strategic goals.
What is the purpose of an accounting office business plan?
Creating a business plan can help an entrepreneur get a complete picture of their venture.
Both in terms of defining competitive advantage and taking a clear view of market conditions, and opportunities and threats to the business.
Entrepreneurs often skip this step, which can have huge consequences for their future business. Without analyzing the many aspects that affect their business, they often cannot predict their future, and business opportunities often pass them by.
Why is there such an aversion to business plans when there are extensive benefits of making them?
Many people assume it must be a voluminous document with a lot of complicated analysis, facts, and figures. However, this assumption often appears to be untrue.
The most important thing about a business plan is to choose a document format that is appropriate for the entrepreneur and their business.
It should be easily accessible and readable so that both you and your employees can always look at it. Create a file besides the paper form.
Traps of a poorly formulated business plan
Before you read the next steps for creating a business plan, consider some general advice:
- Time devoted to make a business plan – if you have thought through your venture well, creating a business plan should not take you long. The document must be relatively short and simple. Choose the format that best suits your needs.
- Uncertainty about the future of the company – even a perfectly prepared business plan will not allow you to fully and successfully predict how your company will develop. However, a deliberate plan of action will show the potential pitfalls and understand the many dependencies.
- Flexibility of operations within the company – some entrepreneurs fear that meticulous business planning holds back business growth by avoiding spontaneous decisions and building an HR process. Remember that a good business plan should be constantly updated and adjusted. It is an interactive part of your business, not just as a document lying in a drawer.
Another pitfall that awaits you as you start and grow your business is treating your business plan as an unnecessary old document.
Many entrepreneurs initially spend a great deal of time on a business plan, but then they never use it again. The document gets forgotten and all the previous work and analysis are about to be wasted.
Creating an accounting office business plan: step by step
A business plan is not a document with predefined requirements or templates.
What the document looks like depends primarily on you and your needs and the purpose of the business plan.
Whenever you start working on such a document, it is always a good idea to use proven schemes. Although you rarely have to adhere to the categories given in them.
The only exception to this is if you are creating a business plan for a bank loan or a grant. In this case, it is necessary to find out about the requirements of the institution in question beforehand.
What should a well-prepared business plan consist of?
- Summary of the project – provides a concise, abbreviated version of the whole. The executive summary is a showcase of the full document to entice a potential investor to your idea. Because of its importance, the executive summary should be written with care and precision. Depending on its purpose, the executive summary should run from one to a maximum of four pages.
- Company characteristics – this part should be relatively short. In the characteristic it is worth to include background and basic information about the company (including your professional resume, contact information, the full name of the company, the location and area of operation, the type of business, the subject and scope of that business, and the organizational and legal form).
- Description of the product/service offered – this is one of the primary goals of the business plan, where you explain exactly what you want to offer and why someone might want to buy it from you.
- Management and employees – the management team and other employees of a company are an extremely important part of how the business operates. Hiring people, especially in HR, means they will influence the way you run your company. Here you should include information about education and qualifications of personnel, organizational structure, number of people employed, the form and duration of their employment, and payroll policy.
- Market and competition – this section of the business plan should present the environment in which your company will operate. It should include the characteristics and all the most relevant aspects of the market analysis. This will give both the entrepreneur and the recipient of the business plan a full picture of the company’s environment.
- Marketing strategy (marketing plan) – identifies the actions you intend to take in a marketing area. A useful addition to your strategy will be a sales plan, in which you describe how and to whom you will sell your products or services.
- Financial plan – this is the part that investors pay the most attention to. The financial plan should describe the estimated revenues and venture costs, and determine its financial position, highlighting the planned and foreseeable development of the company over time.
Where to look for ready-made templates?
You can find sites on the internet to help you create a business plan, whether it’s a generic template, one tailored to a specific industry, or even one created exactly for setting up an accounting office.
These websites usually consist of a set of descriptive and financial wizards that allow you to work collaboratively on your business plan.
The main goal is to keep all financial calculations consistent with the country’s accounting rules.
Thanks to these sites, you can get a balance sheet, income and cash flow statement, and key financial ratios for your new business.