Frequently Asked Questions
Welcome ! We have answered a number of commonly asked questions about us and the services that we offer.
In our experience many accountants are very good at handling the compliance side of things, and can help you set up your operating structures and maybe even some of your Finance systems - but they simply don’t have the breadth of “hands on” business management consulting experience that we bring, from multiple industries.
One of our Principals worked in public accounting for nearly 12 years and is a Fellow of Chartered Accountants Australia & New Zealand, and certainly recommends that you engage a qualified accountant to provide advice that complements what we and other experts can bring to you.
We prefer not to provide compliance-based accounting services ourselves, but can certainly advise you how to select and get the best out of a specialist accounting or bookkeeping firm.
That is not one of our core strengths, so we suggest that you engage more specialised advice. As an aside, however, it is our view that it is generally better and healthier to focus on getting your core business strategy, model and processes right rather than targeting particular taxation outcomes from the outset.
We understand that many businesses wish to appoint formal or informal Boards that might include some highly qualified people. However, it is our direct experience that many Boards do not get close enough to the practical issues, many Independent Directors are spread too thin and / or lose their perspective with time, and it can be challenging to attract suitable persons to act as Directors for an affordable fee.
Furthermore, even some of the most experienced “professional Directors” out there don’t being the specific skills and experience that we can - or have been so removed from routine business processes and issues for so long that they can’t offer contemporary advice regarding those matters.
In our experience the best time to set up a growing business for success is when it has commenced operations but it is still establishing its regular Processes and building its Platforms. Too many businesses develop “bad habits” at this stage that they find difficult to shake later on - and some of those habits can ultimately cause businesses to fail altogether. We would like to work with you now to help you get those practices right; after all, prevention is almost always better - and cheaper - than a cure.
In fact our Business Health Check costs only 0.3% of your annual turnover, if you are currently making sales of around $500k, which is only about a tenth of what many businesses pay just for credit card merchant fees.
We also believe that the typical cost of addressing any one of the many common challenges that our Business Health Check Assessments will usually detect will generally be $5,000 and up, so we are confident that our clients can earn well over 200% as a return on their investment with us, if they take the actions required.
First of all, we believe that our Business Health Check is very well suited to established businesses that wish to take stock of where they are now, even if they don’t think that they have any pressing issues. In that context we also think that our Business Health Check process is a very cost-effective Risk Management tool - and we’ve all heard that “risk management is the new black” in the business world.
Secondly, it is also commonly true that many well established businesses will eventually begin to decline if their owners and leaders don’t step back and critically assess their circumstances from time to time. Our Business Health Check is also suited to helping you through that process, and could even be your first step in an urgent “turnaround” process.
We can’t guarantee exactly what we might find and recommend, or what outcomes you might achieve by engaging with us - that will mostly depend on your business's circumstances and how much you disclose to us. However, we know from past experience that every business will generally have at least one significant area for improvement where we can help you - and surely its better that we help you find and deal with that issue, rather than it be exposed by customers, competitors or regulators.
We do of course provide warranties regarding the quality of our services - please refer to our standard Terms and Conditions.
We are fully confident that we can provide all of our clients with very good service in person, over the telephone or digitally. Furthermore, our Principals have travelled extensively in the past in previous roles and enjoy visiting clients that are located elsewhere in person where it is more effective and efficient to do so.
We personally prefer to avoid using most business jargon, but sometimes that is very hard to do - or the jargon is actually useful. We encourage you to answer each question as well as you can, and you can always discuss any particular gaps in understanding that you had with us during the subsequent Interview, without embarrassment. After all, it took us over 50 years of collective experience to develop this knowledge… we certainly don’t expect our clients to have all of that too.
We also publish Insights that may help you to understand more about important business concepts and expressions.
Please pick the answer option that is closest to your current position, that is a much better approach than not answering at all. The options have been carefully designed to provide you and us with both a broad picture and highly focused data that will help you to understand where your business currently stands and where it might be improved.
There are also a number of questions where you will have the option to provide clarification Comments if you wish.
As much as we believe in our Business Health Checks and Advisory Services, we do appreciate that there may be instances where clients may wish to adopt that project-based approach, so we would certainly consider doing that where the engagement is right for both parties.
The simple answer is just that - simplicity. Its also part of our lean business model, which helps us to keep costs and therefore our prices down because we don’t have to fund our own debtors and collection risks.
We also think its the easiest way for clients to receive value for money service from us straight away.
In the case of our Advisory Service and other consulting offerings, we give our clients the opportunity to purchase levels and quantities of service over defined periods in advance so that they can manage their spend and commitments. We know from our own experience that many business advisers and management consultants who invoice in arrears can easily overrun agreed time budgets, and no-one appreciates “bill shock”.
Absolutely ! In fact we think that our Business Health Check is also a quite comprehensive and very cost effective "due diligence" checklist, which prospective purchasers could ask sellers to complete as part of the negotiation process.
Similarly, existing business owners who may wish to sell their organisation might use the Business Health Check to determine if there are any risks or gaps to be addressed that might otherwise reduce the sale value of the business. Healthier businesses are inherently more valuable.
Finally, we can certainly offer you tailored project-based consulting services to assist buyers and sellers of businesses with any specific acquisition or divestment issues.