Investors Looking at VOIP Solutions

voip1Can you still make money investing in old school technologies? I like to find off the beaten path types of investments because almost no one else is investing in those types of businesses. Recently I was talking to a guy about investing in companies that sell hosted pbx solutions. I know what you’re thinking… Aren’t PBX solutions dead?

Forensic Accounting Jobs

magnifying glassMany people now days are curious about forensic accounting.  This seems to be a new trend that sounds interesting.  A forensic accountant is essentially a financial detective. They usually must have an in-depth knowledge of accounting process in order to detect fraud.  Usually this comes with many years of experience.  But sometimes it is possible for a recent grad to find themselves in this field.

Accounting is In Demand, Period

This is probably great news for that those who have a bachelor’s degree in accountancy. The question is, why now? In this highly competitive market environment, accounting becomes one of the most reliable professions considered in demand across all industries. Companies can’t run without money, which also means, they can’t run smoothly without an accountant in tow.

Before you run out and enroll in an accounting program you should know that according to most US news stories, like those reported here, you need to earn a master’s degree if you want more leverage in the industry. Yes, the nation is in dire need of accountants but employers are not hiring just anyone.

According to research, a high 45 percent of employers plan to hire business school graduates with a master’s degree. That’s 9 percent more than last year’s survey results. If anything, it explains the increasing interest on accounting MBA programs on top business schools in the country.

Continuing Education

An MBA degree in accounting usually takes one year to secure if you are a full-time student. You may enroll in a program fresh from your undergraduate studies or you may do it along with a current job hire. There is a process that will help prepare you for the recruitment and it involves fine tuning your resumes as well as preparing you for interviews. Career management offices take care of those.

After getting the degree, students can veer away to either of the two common paths for accounting MBA grads: in the world of taxation or auditing. Being employed in a public accounting firm, handling tax issues of corporate or individual clients, is the dream of many prospective accountants. It pays well and requires fewer working hours. What’s not to like?

On the other hand, some students would prefer to secure an auditing position in a company, handling the financial statements of an organization and seeing through their transparencies. You may be employed in a public accounting firm and be assigned to audit an organization or work in a specific organization as an internal auditor.

Besides handling tax issues and auditing, students may also open up to other job opportunities, including those in manufacturing, consultancy, or the government. The options are endless.

Compromises in Getting a Company Off the Ground

Whether a company is starting out or has already established a foothold, there is always the search for balance in doing business. There are expenses to handle, office space, warehouse space if needed, payroll and salaries, research and development, manufacturing, and other expenses. The compromises are due to the needs to be competitive, and at the same time to lower costs. The compromises can be put in economic models, where the cost partly dictates the amount of sales. Qualitatively, good products and the best services do not come cheap. There is always the need to get things done correctly the first time, or to redo everything in order to come up with a product or service which is acceptable to the customer.

For accountants, there are other metrics which can be seen in the way business is handled. These metrics are based on the actual numbers put in the journal, the balance sheet, and other accounting tables. From the way a company does business, the financial papers will show how many times it rolls over its money. In simple terms, the more rollovers there are, the better it does business. The better the return on investment. This means of course that a business has to look at its cash position like a hawk. As much as possible, it should be able to collect as soon as possible. However, it should also try to pay as late as possible and still maintain as good a relationship with its suppliers. A company should also try not to spend too much on its capital expenditures. If it can use equipment for as long as possible, it should.

In most instances, there is no need to buy office space. Getting an office space for lease solves a lot of things for a company. It can control its finances better, and it can have the option to increase or decrease the office space as it needs to. Most importantly, leasing space allows a company to spend less money on office space.

Getting a business running is not that easy. Growing it into a success is a matter of a prudent watch on money and how it can be used properly. There are no two ways to go about it. To make money, needs some money, however, there are different ways of running a business based on the amount of money a company has and what it wants to do with it.

How to Account for Temporary Fencing

I had a client ask me the other day how to account for temporary fencing they have had to purchase to put up while renovations take place at their premises. It is an interesting one and there are several things to take into account. First, the following two have to be met for the fencing to be classed as a fixed asset:

•  The fencing must have a useful life of more than one year

•  The cost must exceed the corporate capitalization limit

The latter is the limit of expenditure below which items are recorded as an expense and not an asset.  

If that fencing meets both criteria then you have to determine the classification. In this case, it would go under Construction in Progress, as that is what the fencing is being used for.  However, there are a number of other classifications it could go under, including Buildings, Fixtures, even land at a push, depending on the use of the fence.  Land Improvements is another good classification for temporary fencing as well.

If the fencing has been leased from a company like Temporary Fencing Pros instead of purchased the rules for recording it are slightly different.  Instead they must be accounted for as a capital lease. A capital lease is not generally put as a separate asset on the accounts, as it is just a form of finance rather than an actual physical asset.

The asset must be accounted for as the appropriate classification, i.e. one of the above, with notes and paperwork to back it up, and the lease itself is put down as a liability – the cost of the lease in other words per month or year for example.

The world of accountancy is interesting but it can also be difficult, especially in the case of corporate accounting.  Sometimes, wrong though it may be, I don’t believe in allowing internes tot eh accountancy business sole access to corporate accounts.

However, I do think they should be allowed to work with a senior accountant just to get a feel for how involved corporate accounting is and how many different problems can raise their head.

How to Choose the Best MPLS Provider for Your Business

Using MPLS or the multiprotocol label switching is getting more popular these days. It allows fewer errors in dealing with internet connections. It also allows users to have safe and secure access to any data online. The speed also becomes a lot faster if you migrate to MPLS. Though this means another expense for your business, you will still benefit from it in the end. Therefore, if you are considering migrating to MPLS, here are some of the tips that you may use in choosing the best MPLS provider:

• Consider the cost of the services. As a business owner, you always have to think about return of investment. This is important since anything that you do to improve your business will always have a corresponding expense. However, will this give you back more profits at the end of the day? If a particular MPLS provider has affordable rates and you think you will benefit a lot from it, then go ahead and give it a try.

• Check if they can provide good customer service. Take note that it is not easy to decide to migrate to MPLS especially if you know very little about the whole process. Thus, if you show interest in seeking for their help, they need to guide you in every step of the way. They must show interest in you as well as potential client. This will give you an idea on what kind of service you are to expect from them once you close the deal.

• When going MPLS services, there are lots of packages to choose from. Therefore, you have to be wise in choosing the right service. You should check out services in bundles so that you can maximize the benefits while minimizing the overall cost.

• Find a service provider that will help in managing the entire transaction. You need them to handle this whole thing from the start until the end. You don’t want to just ask them to do installations and changes, and you will be left out on your own.

Once you have found the right partner, then you can now start migrating your entire system. If you want to know more about the best Orange County mpls provider, go to http://aerocominc.com/.

Starting an Accounting Business Online

The Internet makes it possible to offer services to clients on different geographical areas. If you’re a professional accountant, you don’t have to limit your services to people in your local area as you too could offer your expert help online. You can do this even if you already have an office where you operate locally. This is a cost effective and convenient way of expanding your business as you don’t have to open an office and hire people elsewhere. Here’s how you can start your accounting business online.

Determine the Services You’ll Offer

Decide on what services you wish to offer so potential clients would know about it. Will you be offering tax preparation, payroll, bookkeeping or all? Choose the services that you specialize in to get the best possible assistance.

Get a Website

Having a website is important if you wish to offer your services on the web. This is where you will post all the information regarding your business, including your services and contact information. It should look professional and easy to navigate. Moreover, you should update it with information that potential clients would find helpful.

Choose the Software to Use

You would need an accounting software that you can use online. One of the most popular accounting programs that many accountants use is QuickBooks. This software comes with payroll and accounting features.

Create a Merchant Account

A merchant account is needed to receive payments from your clients. This would make it possible for you to receive credit card payments, which is usually the mode of payment online. You may create this account with your bank or using your PayPal account.

Promote Your Business

Once you have everything ready, you need to promote your business on the web. This is an important step because even though you have a website, if no one knows about it; it would still not serve its purpose. SEO experts can help you in making your website more searchable online. Social media sites can also be used for marketing your business. You would find professionals in Toronto that offer this service. Social media marketing companies in Toronto have proven track record in this field so they can maximize the use of social media to build your brand.

With the right marketing strategies, you’ll be able to build your name online in no time.

How to Save on Your Business Travels

When you have your own business or company, you also need to be careful not too overspend, especially if you’re not very liquid. The truth of the matter is that it sometimes takes 30 days to 60 days to collect a payment from a certain company, sometimes more, if you’re talking about construction supplies and other long-term engagements.

Since travel is inevitable, you can save some money on your trips by booking early and getting the rack rates from travel agencies. How can you do this? Stick to one travel agent who will handle all your travel arrangements for you. You can make them as your company’s resident travel agent. They will handle everything from pass porting, ticketing, car rentals and your hotel accommodations. They can go as far as come up with a travel itinerary for you if you are traveling for pleasure with your family or associates. The advantage of having only one travel agent is that they can give you the best prices on all of these activities knowing that you are a returning customer. They are also aware that if they do a good job on your account, you will not hesitate to refer them to your partners or other individuals. This in turn, will give them more business in the months to come.

Secondly, this same agency can also get big discounts from airlines and hotels. Booking and paying in advance can get you as much as half off the prices of tickets and accommodation. For example, you will be billeted at Liverpool hotels on the months of September. To save money on rates, you should book and pay for your reservations as early as April of the same year. The latest you can wait would be until June. After that, you might have to pay full price for your tickets and hotel.
Getting the lowest rate possible on your travels will help your cash flow a lot, especially if your business requires you to travel often. Even if this will be charged as a company expense, it will still be to your advantage if you get discounts and packages while you’re just starting.

4 Tips for Efficient Accounting Practice

Recently picked up a new client, one who was concerned that their current accountant was not looking after his business fairly.  To check out the records, I visited the client, and, for the duration of my stay, I booked one of the Miami Beach Suites at this marvelous hotel.

What I found when I went through their records was shocking. The accountant was to blame only for not pointing out what they were doing wrong and not making suggestions on better practices.  The clients themselves have to take a big portion of the blame for the way they keep their records.  I thought I would share with all of you four ways that efficient accounting practices can help a business no end – in case you ever come across such a badly run business!

This area can be improved no end with online invoicing. Vendors can email their receipts in which then get integrated into the system automatically. That puts an end to waiting for invoices and playing a guessing game.

  • Cash Cycle

If a company uses an integrated accounting system, they no longer have to worry about invoices being generated and then lost. Integration is a huge help when it comes to cash forecasting, accounts are more visible and customer billing information is held where it should be. That makes it easier to work out who is overdue for payment.

  • Close and Reconciliation

Closing and reconciliation processes become much easier with an automated system. The entire process can be shortened and mistakes all but eliminated. SaaS – Software as a Service – can also carry out cash reconciliations using downloaded bank statements. This cuts the paperwork and the time spent by employees on manually reconciling accounts.

More and more companies are using automated data analysis using automated tools. This kind of system cuts down on errors and speeds up the process no end and human errors are cut out.

Companies need to evolve with the latest in technology and software, designed to help them make life easier. But, accountants also need to recognize when a business needs to adopt one or more integrated solutions and not just leave them to make a deeper mess of things.

Impact of Online Presence Over Business Profitability

Coming from a background where everything is calculated and analyzed on the basis of digits, the framework within which businesses today emerge as successful and profitable have changed drastically. A few decades ago, having a unique service or product that is targeted and launched with smart marketing tactics was considered to be sufficient for generating decent profits for a business. Let's discuss how things have changed ever since businesses have gone online and a whole new array of marketing, finance, human resource management and operations has been structured through the digital world. 

Change in Investment Goals
Businesses previously were cautious about the budgets allocated for marketing. The only medium to reach out to the target audiences and build sales was through television, radio, newspapers and magazines. All of these were extremely expensive mode of advertisements and promotion. Today, with the advent of global markets and businesses being present online, the same investment budgets are redirected to the quality of product and service. Marketing and promotion costs have reduced considerably, leaving room for setting new investment goals and providing customers with more innovative products and services. 

Unlimited Outreach
One of the best things that an online presence does to a business is, expand and leave no limits to its outreach possibilities. Getting smart professionals on the board and working around with fresh ideas guarantees viral ideas that can go big and reach millions of people. Today the concept of going global and targeting almost anyone and everyone has become much easier and practical than in the previous years. An example of how  businesses can create limitless outreach with a huge profitability margin can be seen with how SEO companies cleverly designs custom online marketing strategies and win over its clients. Check out one of the famous SEO companies, Sacramento SEO Company here for more details. 

Diverse Group of Employees
Cost reduction can be created through flexible hiring policies. There are many services that are more expensive to hire in home towns when compared to other parts of the world. Apart from that, the level of creativity of work performance is also better in some regions. Businesses take advantage of this fact and hire diverse group of employees from different countries and continents, which lead to better financial and qualitative work outputs. 

Tips in Buying High Quality Used Forklifts

Forklifts may be used for different purposes. They are extremely helpful for construction and renovation. When you make use of forklifts, things will be done a lot faster. They will also reduce human labor. Thus, if you can buy one to be used for many purposes, then it will help a lot. The only problem is that forklifts are very expensive. In order to reduce your expenses, you might want to check out used forklifts.

These forklifts have been used for some time by the previous owner. However, they are still in good condition and may be reused provided that the damaged parts have been repaired. If you plan to buy used forklifts, here are some tips to reduce your expenses:

1. Find out what type of forklift is needed. There are different types and sizes for forklift. You
need to know the specific model that you need. You might buy a big one, but you only need something small. It could also be the other way around. Thus, you need to evaluate your need ahead of time to avoid wasting money.

2. Contact different companies that offer used forklifts. Ask them about the prices of the forklift. By then, you can easily compare them and eventually limit the choices. You may also ask if they have other promotions or discounts so you may avail of them as well.

3. If you have trimmed down the options, visit the actual store and request for a demonstration trial. It will be easier for you to determine if there is a problem with the forklift if someone does the test drive. If you find no problem with the equipment at all, then nothing should stop you from buying it. It is important to check the forklift for any problem right from the start to avoid spending a lot for maintenance and repair. You don’t want to spend less for purchase, and pay a lot later on for repair.

When it comes to the best forklifts for sale, you can go here. Hopefully, you will land with the best deal.

Tips in Reducing Cost for Water Heater Installation

Hot water for bathing and drinking is essential. This is why homes should have water heaters. This will make hot and clean water more accessible. Those who wish to avoid the biting cold during winter can just soak themselves in hot water and their problem is solved. The only reason why still a lot of homes don’t have water heaters is because of the price for water heater installation. Therefore, if you really want to install water heater, here are some tips to avoid spending a lot:

1. Look for a company that provides a package deal for water heater. This means that they will offer you the actual water heater and the fee already includes the installation. Buying the water heater from one store and asking another company to install it will just double your expenses. If you can find a deal like this, then make the most out of it. You can even ask some companies to offer the installation almost free of charge.

2. Wait for off season to install the water heater. Usually, people go for water heater installation during winter as part of their last minute preparations. This is why the cost may skyrocket. Be wise and have it installed during summer. At this time, no one would think about water heaters due to the hot weather. However, since you will be using the water heaters anyway, there is nothing wrong with installing it earlier.

3. Look for a company that offers discount rates on their services if you ask them for both installation and maintenance. There are companies that can give you this package deal. This is also great since when you will encounter problems with the water heater later on, you know whom you can trust. Besides, if they won’t be able to fix the problem, they can just ask you not to pay for additional service fees.

With these tips, you now have no excuse for still not installing the water heater. If you want to know more about Water Heater HQ, go here. For more ideas on water heater repair, you can go ahead and check this out.

Things to Remember When Searching for Banks for Small Businesses

Finding the right bank is extremely important if you wish to have a stable partner for your business. Banks offer tons of financial services that you will surely need to keep your business afloat. Thus, right from the start, you need to make sure that you partner with the right bank so that all your financial transactions are safe. In doing so, here are some tips that you might want to take into consideration:

• Make sure that the bank has an affordable interest rate for small business owners who wish to borrow money. At some point, you might have to borrow money from the bank. Therefore, it is important to find a bank that can help you with an affordable interest rate. They must also have a repayment scheme that will make it easier for you to pay off your loans in no time. They must also have different types of loans that will cater to different needs.

• See to it that the bank is insured and is big enough that they won’t place your money at risk. Don’t go for smaller community or local banks that could go bankrupt any time. Your money will be at risk with these banks. Just find a partner that will give you peace of mind every time you sleep at night.

• Find a bank that has extensive ATM networks. Wherever you may be, you must be able to have access to your money. For instance, you are traveling to another state to meet a client, you must be able to withdraw or deposit money right away. If it is recognized internationally, it would be a lot better.

• The bank should provide good customer service. Aside from stability and good track records in providing help to small business owners, the bank must be able to extend reliable customer service. This is very important since you want to process all your transaction smoothly.

Once you have found the right partner, go ahead and seal the deal. To help you out in your decision making, you might want to refer to the infographic below for more important things to consider.

Small Business Infograph 2013-2014 , California Bank and Trust
Presented by California Bank & Trust, Business Banking

Price Comparisons – An Accountant’s Point of View

So, how does an accountant perform a price comparison? Does he or she use one specific method over another?  Are there any tricks or techniques to it?  For many accountants – and customers – the trick to a price comparison is simply knowing the prices and how to compare them to work out which way is the cheapest. Other accountants take a more advanced route and look at other factors before they make a decision. This way they can work out the most cost efficient way, rather than just going for the cheapest price.

Is this The Job of an Accountant?

Most accountants tend to stick with doing calculations and reconciling accounts, keeping records and tax paperwork rather than getting involved in doing price comparisons.  They don’t tend to have much, if any, involvement in purchase decision, how and when a company acquires equipment, or rental decisions.  However, some do so it is worth taking a look at whether an accountant’s view on the matter can be of any help.

When you get an accountant involved in your business, they expect far more details. They want more numbers to crunch so that they can work out the perfect price comparison for your benefit.  Let’s say you are considering renting a forklift.  There is quite a bit that needs to be taken not consideration, including features and rental prices before you can make a decision. Using a site like this to check forklift rental prices is a good place to start.

The accountant wants to look at all the factors involved including working out which ones suit your budget. Most accountants are educated enough to know that forklifts don’t necessary have a great deal of difference in features or quality especially used ones.  Reliability shouldn’t be an issue because if there are any defects, it’s easy to get a replacement forklift or your money back.

The most important part is the price but there are also a few other things to consider as well:

Lift Height and Load Size – The forklift must be fully capable of doing the job you are hiring it for. Can it extend tall enough and can it carry enough load?

TerrainIs it suitable for the terrain it will be working on?  If you rent one that is only fit for paved areas and then use it on a more difficult terrain, it will give you problems and won’t be suitable.

Fuel Efficient – This may not be the easiest to figure out so it should only be used as a deciding factor. Obviously, the more fuel-efficient it is, the lower the overall costs.

Driver’s Preference – If you already have your driver decided on it may be better to let them decide. He will know which ones are best in terms of load and lift, efficiency and ease of use.  This is more common sense than an accountant’s advice

Rent or Buy – If you are likely to need a forklift for several different jobs or are renting long term, it may be more cost effective to compare prices of used forklifts for sale before making your decision.

You don’t need to be an accountant to work out price comparisons. Most of it common sense and you don’t need to be fully au fait with accounting standards to make your mind up.