In business, cash is king. From your own financial independence, to your investors if you have them, to your top and bottom lines, everything pretty much begins and ends with money. Small businesses and veteran-owned small businesses are no different, regardless of scale. Your business might not have an official Chief Financial Officer, but “CFO” is just a title. The functions they typically perform are essential to the core of every business, so someone is getting this job done, and it might just be you.
So put on your CFO hat and check out these tools that can help your small business finance functions:
Budgeting and Financial Planning Software: Microsoft Excel
There’s a reason Microsoft’s spreadsheet software is still around after 30 years. It’s an extremely versatile tool for managing the data of your small business. Are there better, more tailored systems out there? Absolutely, but before you spend the time and money unnecessarily, Excel may be able to get the job done or solve the short-term need before a more robust system is required. For businesses small and large, Excel is used everywhere and for good reason.
Bookkeeping Software for Small Business: QuickBooks Online
When your business is ready to graduate from the spreadsheet method of bookkeeping, QuickBooks Online is a great solution. The software is accessible from anywhere, which helps for the CFO on the go. It’s an easy to setup and use interface for booking revenues, expenses, accruals, and everything else you need to put together your financial statements. You can even run your invoices through the software.
Small Business Taxes: Local CPAs
You want to make sure you’re getting your taxes and filings done correctly. Don’t underthink the importance of getting expert help when it comes to these functions. If you’re looking for a CPA in your area, check out the aicpa’s CPA finder website, or check with your local Chamber of Commerce, as they will likely have a list of the local firms in your area.
Tracking 1099s: Track1099
Need to send out 1099s to investors, vendors, etc? Track1099 can save you the papercuts of licking your own envelopes. Just upload a template spreadsheet and Track1099 will create the documents, stuff the envelops, and send it to the required parties (and the IRS).
Payroll Software for Small Business: ADP
Odds are, you employ at least one person at your company. Depending on the business structure, location, and timing, your business may owe payroll taxes at the Federal and State levels. ADP processes payroll for your company and files all the necessary filings for your business using a simple to use, online accessible interface. The software is scalable too so you can use this service from one to 100,000 employees.
Capitalization Tables: Carta
If you’re set up as a corporation and have investors, Carta provides an excellent platform to help you manage your “Cap Table”, stock certificates, share classes, and some regulatory requirements (409A, Form 3921, Rule 701 etc). They are a recent-founded small business themselves, so they have a great understanding of the requirements of early-stage businesses and have built a platform to help you navigate this once-confusing business area with ease.
Finally, be sure to check out your local business communities for CFO groups. There are usually always CFOs for hire in your area that can come in on a full or part time basis. The right person for the job should be able to help you identify systems for your specific business needs, have relevant experience at similar stage companies, and a track record of success.
Small Business Financing: The Critical Function of Any Company
So whether you employ a “CFO” or not, someone must be responsible for these critical functions for your business to be successful. With great business instincts, financial know-how, and the right systems in place, you can position your company for long term success. And as the unofficial CFO, learning the basics of small business financing is essential. Download the free ebook, “The Basics of Small Business Financing.”