Although the holiday season can be full of excitement and anticipation of a good holiday break, for small businesses it can be extremely stressful and the worry about cashflow and the slowing down of business is real. We’ve put together some practical ways to prepare your business for the holiday period so that you can rest assured you’ll be fit and ready to go for the New Year.
Send out invoices early
Getting your December invoices out a bit earlier and before Christmas is a great idea – it gives you peace of mind that that job is done and it also allows for your customers to get their affairs in order too and get payment sorted before Christmas. If they’re closing down over Christmas and they have payments due during that period, organise with them to pay earlier so that you can both start the new year without anything outstanding. Keep the conversations going to make sure that you know if a late payment will occur due to lack of funds during this time of year.
Sort out your staff
If you’re not closing down for the entire holiday period, you’ll need to make sure that you’ve got a staff roster sorted well in advance so that your team knows when they are needed and can plan their holiday schedules around that. You’ll also need to ensure that you have enough revenue during what can be a quieter time to pay your employees fully – including any extra for public holidays worked. Before it gets too busy, make sure you check through your employee contracts to remind yourself of their entitlements over this period and keep an eye on the calendar for any ‘Mondayisations’ – when a public holiday falls on a Saturday or Sunday, employees who don’t normally work get the following Monday as their paid public holiday.
Enjoy your success
It’s a great idea to boost team morale and cohesiveness by throwing some sort of event or dinner for your staff to celebrate Christmas and the hard work they’ve done throughout the year. Something as simple as a shared lunch or a team outing or activity will do the trick and you can even claim back some of your expenses. Sending out a small token of your appreciation to your clients is also a great way to keep those relationships going – a Christmas hamper, a nice bottle of wine, anything that lets them know you appreciate their business and yes, you may be able to claim these as as business expense too.
Cultivate the Christmas spirit
Get those good Christmas vibes flowing by doing some good for your community. Donating some Christmas presents or food to children’s hospitals or charities supporting the vulnerable during the holiday period is a great way to give back. There are many charities to get involved with and you may be able to facilitate an ongoing relationship with them going forward to engage with the community and boost your profile. You can also deduct 100% of the cost of what you provide to members of the public for charitable purposes – but this is just a bonus, giving back is the most important thing!
If you’re not sure how best to plan for the Christmas period or you want to know what you can claim back on, get in touch with our friendly accounting team today and we’ll make sure this Christmas is as stress-free as possible!
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